Archdiocese asks six area parochial schools to join consolidation plan; changes could be in place by fall of 2016
by BRIAN NADIG
The Archdiocese of Chicago recently asked six area parochial schools to participate in a regionalization program that could result in fewer schools by the fall of 2016.
Those schools asked to participate are Saint Tarcissus, Saint Cornelius, Saint Pascal, Saint Thecla, Saint Constance and Our Lady of Victory. Schools which choose not to consolidate reportedly risk losing financial assistance from the Archdiocese.
In a Jan. 20 letter to parents at Saint Tarcissus, principal Michael Johnson wrote: “Over the next few years, it is proposed that we look at creating a new educational model, one that will have fewer schools but stronger ones for children to attend. We will all be involved in this process and have the ability to shape the discussion of what we want in our new school model and how this model can provide our children with a high quality educational experience.
“In this manner, we will continue the work that we have begun this year to develop a critical curriculum that challenges our students to be critical problem solvers. We will also be able to suggest new programs that we don’t have to be incorporated as well as new opportunities involving fine arts or other areas, such as broadcasting.”
If the school does not participate in the consolidation program, the Archdiocese would no longer provide financial assistance to the school, the letter states.
“The school must then be self-sustainable without incurring any debt to the parish. In the event that the parish did not show sufficient cash reserves to cover the school’s deficits, the school would be closed,” Johnson wrote.
Each of the area’s parochial schools is holding an open house this weekend for prospective students.