Students react to Catholic schools closures

OLNEY - October 9, 2009 The Cardinal Dougherty student body left school this afternoon feeling let down and dispirited. Their historic school will close its doors for good this spring as it is the victim of failing enrollment, rising costs, and competition from charter schools.

Some students have been crying since word came out yesterday.

Back in the 1960's Cardinal Dougherty was the world's largest Catholic high school with more than 6,000 students. Today, it is down to only 642. There's been a 43-percent drop in the student body over the last 10 years alone...

The Archdiocese projects another 34-percent drop over the next 10 years. Still parents, teachers, and alumni are deeply upset to learn that school is soon to be out forever here in Olney.

In Frankford this morning, on the front steps, the student body of Northeast Catholic High School for Boys, which is also targeted for closure at the end of this school year, gathered to rally and lament what they know is a done deal. With a capacity of 1700, North has only 551 students enrolled..

Back at Cardinal Dougherty, parents, many of them feeling betrayed and angry, met with the administration tonight. There were told again, the Archdiocese is pulling the plug on these two schools.

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