St. Brigid School, which was founded in 1856, will close at the end of this school year, stunned students, parents and teachers learned yesterday.
Said one: "Kids sent home crying with a letter to their parent/guardian. School being closed by the Archdiocese without warning." Another parent told me this via Facebook: "The school said they had no idea. Teachers and the administration are distraught and so sad ... such a good and well-kept school. Hard to believe."
Here's the announcement on the school's website:
On Feb. 4, the Archdiocese of New York announced that St. Brigid School in Manhattan will cease operations at the end of the current academic year.
We understand that this is upsetting and concerning news, but rest assured that additional information on this development, as well as the resources to ensure that your child can continue their education at an excellent Catholic School nearby, will be forthcoming this week and posted on a special web page we have created for parents: https://catholicschoolsny.org/st-brigid, where additional information and resources will be available and updated regularly.
Here's what the Archdiocese posted:
On February 4, the Archdiocese of New York announced changes to a number of Catholic schools across the Archdiocese. Regretfully, St. Brigid School will cease operations at the end of the current academic year.
Despite the Archdiocese’s best efforts to maintain the operational and financial viability of the school, continuing to educate students in a building that is underutilized and in need significant improvements has proven unfeasible.
St. Brigid School students will have the opportunity to continue their Catholic education at another nearby Catholic School, some of which are listed below. We encourage you to visit potential schools at your earliest convenience to see how your child can continue receiving an excellent faith-based education.
• Guardian Angel Elementary School
• Immaculate Conception Elementary School
• Our Lady of Pompeii Elementary School
• Transfiguration Elementary School
Only one of those schools, Immaculate Conception, is in the East Village.
St. Brigid, located on Avenue B at Seventh Street (prime spot for condos some day), serves students from nursery school through 8th grade.
St. Brigid's Roman Catholic Church on Avenue B at Eighth Street was nearly demolished in 2006, but an unknown donor put up the money ($20 million) to renovate the historic structure. The church reopened in January 2013.
Updated 10 a.m.
School parents are organizing ... and they want to know more about the decision to close St. Brigid.
Said one parent in the comments:
Receiving a letter home in a kid's backpack, like it was a field trip permission slip, is unacceptable. It gave no concrete reasons but claims that they did their best to keep the school open. It is not 'your best' if you did not include the community most affected. The families are not naive, but they are getting organized!
There is a Twitter account now — @BrigidSave ... and a Facebook group.
Updated 5 p.m.
The Post followed up on the story, talking to students and parents...
Heartsick students at a 163-year-old Manhattan Catholic school burst into tears Monday after learning it would shutter permanently at the end of this academic year.
Founded in 1856, the Saint Brigid School in the East Village was one of five city Catholic schools marked for closure by the Archdiocese of New York this week.
“They told us during assembly,” said a downcast Carly Auringer, an 11-year-old sixth-grader. “Everyone was crying.”
Students said they had formed rare bonds with classmates over the years — and struggled to accept being separated from them next year.
Image via Google Street View