As hundreds of students across the Archdiocese protested his decision to close dozens of schools, Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput spent Monday morning in calm confines at a school that will not close: Bishop Shanahan High School in Downingtown.
An Archdiocese panel is recommending a sweeping consolidation that includes the closure of dozens of Philadelphia-area Catholic schools.
Students huddled and hugged, some cried, outside West Catholic High School, upon news the school is on the closing list.
The girls at St. Hubert’s were dismissed around 12:45 p.m. They came through the doors, tears streaming down their faces, cell phones up to their ears, calling home and letting their parents know their school was on the list.
The students want the Pennsylvania House to take up the bill already passed by the state senate that would provide vouchers to low-income students at failing schools.
For example, the 213 seniors at Sts. John Neumann and Maria Gorretti High School, in South Philadelphia, earned $9 million in college scholarships.
Archdiocesan Superintendent Mary Rochford suggests people brace themselves because the economy, paired with the high cost of education, is forcing more than a few parents to opt out of Catholic schools.
Superintendent Mary Rochford confirms the closings of Our Lady of Charity school in Brookhaven and St. Philomena in Lansdowne. She wouldn’t immediately identify the third.
Catholic school teachers have authorized a strike if they don’t reach a new contract with the archdiocese by the end of the summer, when the current contract expires.
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has announced that it would be closing seven Catholic grade schools in the Philadelphia area at the end of this school year due to low enrollment.