June 1, 2020
Dear Members of the St. Joseph School Community,
It is with deep sadness that we regret to inform you that our beloved Saint Joseph School will be closing at the end of the 2019-2020 Academic Year. This is not an easy decision since SJS has been offering area students an outstanding Catholic Education since 1882 and has been an important fixture in the Quiet Corner.
As the Pastor of St. Therese Parish, I have witnessed the tremendous dedication of so many of you as well as the great love that you have for this school. However, despite all of the hard effort by so many over the years, the school has fallen into serious financial difficulty stemming primarily from a significant decline in enrollment which has been trending downward for some time. The number of students that had been enrolled for next year was 84.
Clearly this is a difficult decision and one which took serious time and consideration by many people both locally and on the diocesan level. Obviously, all of us wished for a different outcome. However, despite all of the efforts that were made, the reality is that our parish, diocese, and local community face demographic and financial challenges that we cannot ignore. The school has not been able to generate enough income to meet expenses and as a result the financial burden has fallen to the churches in the parish as well as the diocese. This is no longer a possibility for either entity.
Adding to the already very serious financial situation of the school, The Coronavirus Pandemic has complicated matters. Unable to hold any further open houses and the uncertain economic times our families are facing make it very difficult to insure enrollment for next year. Additionally, the pandemic has affected the parish’s and diocese’s financial contributions which are the main sources of the school subsidy.
On behalf of the Parish Community, I thank you for the love and support that has characterized SJS for so many years and has touched the lives of so many within our Community and beyond. May God bless you and your loved ones today and always.
Very Reverend David P. Choquette