Maybe the Catholic Church can play a role in being a decision maker when it comes to our state educational system.
In an unfortunate event this past week, the diocese made the decision to close the Catholic Academy of the Holy Family School in Jamestown, which had existed since the 1870s. The reason? Low enrollment.
"The Catholic Academy of Holy Family community exhibited resounding energy and commitment to keep the school open, viable and sustainable," said Dr. Rosemary Henry, superintendent of Catholic schools for the diocese, "but only enrolled 69 students for next year, falling short of the 100 benchmark established by the local leadership. Such low enrollment and financial challenges may affect the educational environment for students, compromise the ability to meet payroll for teachers and impact future viability of the school."
Every school in Western New York, especially those subsidized through taxpayer dollars, is facing declining enrollment. Many of the residents have been too stubborn over the years to accept it.
How viable are our small schools and what type of educational environment is it really providing? It is in no way sustainable in its current form.
Catholic leaders understand what low enrollment numbers mean. Why can't our state leaders with the small schools?