By Mike DeNardo
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Fourteen area Catholic elementary schools will be opening under new management in the fall.
In a sweltering auditorium at St. Gabriel School in the Grays Ferry section of the city, Archbishop Charles Chaput signed an agreement turning 14 parish schools over to independent control.
All of the schools are in Philadelphia except one — St. Cyril of Alexandria, in East Lansdowne.
The Independence Mission Schools system will operate the schools. IMS president Al Cavalli says the aim is to control costs.
“The primary goal is affordability,” Cavalli (right) tells KYW Newsradio. “We have to get the costs down so that the families can afford to send their children here. Especially families with two and three children.”
Tuition assistance comes largely through corporate donors taking advantage of state tax credits. Chaput says those credits are essential.
“Without it, I don’t think our schools would have as much of a chance for success as we do now,” the archbishop says.
Chaput says teachers and staff at the 14 schools should remain the same. He says the only difference that students may notice is that they have more classmates, because enrollment is up seven percent.
The fourteen school under the new agreement are:
- St. Frances Cabrini Regional
- St. Gabriel
- St. Martin de Porres
- The DePaul Catholic School
- St. Veronica School
- St. Thomas Aquinas School
- St Raymond of Penafort School
- St. Rose of Lima School
- St. Martin of Tours School
- St. Malachy School
- St. Helena/Incarnation School
- St. Cyril of Alexandria
- Our Mother of Sorrows/St. Ignatius of Loyola
- Holy Cross School