Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Faith, Not Buildings

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Faith, Not Buildings

Article excerpt

Parents seem to be upset over the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh's mission to regionalize the grade school system ("Parents Wary as Diocese Eyes Regional Schools," Nov. 20). I'm surprised that it took the diocese this long to address a problem that has existed for many years.

The model of parishes bearing the financial burden to keep their schools open with dwindling enrollment has devastated many congregations since the 1980s. We had to close our school (St. Robert Bellarmine, East McKeesport) in the late '90s due to a steady downward spiral of the enrollment. And there wasn't any regional alternative available - it was just "send your kids to another Catholic school and hope that works out."

The diocese has a model for this as it long ago regionalized its high schools. The concept of consolidating the parish and local schools into a broader-region environment has made better use of shared resources and lessened the burden of individual parishes. …

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