Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New York Archdiocese Says It Plans to Close 27 Schools

Good news in NY is offset by this very sad news.  I've said it before and I'll say it again: from a societal perspective, it is absolute MADNESS to allow inner-city Catholic schools to close for lack of a relatively small amount of money, especially when at the same time we're pouring enormous amounts of money into chronically failing public schools:

January 11, 2011

New York Archdiocese Says It Plans to Close 27 Schools


The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York announced on Tuesday that 26 elementary schools and one high school that had received heavy subsidies in recent years because of declining enrollment would be closed at the end of the current school year.

The announcement capped a two-year review process and represented the largest school consolidation in the history of the archdiocese, which includes 2.5 million Catholics in a sprawling territory stretching from Staten Island to Sullivan County. Among the schools to be shut, six are in the Bronx, four are on Staten Island and three are in Manhattan.

Timothy J. McNiff, the archdiocese's superintendent of schools, said in a statement that schools were chosen for closing because of declining enrollment and money.

The 27 schools marked for closing received subsidies totaling $10 million this year. By comparison, the remaining 189 parochial schools in the archdiocese received a total of $13 million in subsidies, Joseph Zwilling, the archdiocesan spokesman, said.

Most parochial schools depend on tuition, which ranges from $3,000 to $6,000 per pupil, and the support of the members of the parish in which they are located, as their main sources of financing. As part of its Pathways to Excellence reconfiguration of schools, the archdiocese plans to shift some of that burden from individual parishes to clusters of two or more parishes.

The archdiocese has promised to find places in other parochial schools for all of the roughly 4,700 students affected by the closings.

The announcement contained good news for 5 schools among the 32 identified by the archdiocese last year as "at risk" of being closed. One school in Manhattan — Good Shepherd — another in Westchester County and two in upstate counties will remain open. A decision on a fifth school, Sacred Heart of Jesus, in Midtown Manhattan, was deferred for several weeks, according to the announcement, "so that additional information can be gathered and analyzed."

 Subscribe in a reader