Delaforum

News

July 7,  2011

Catholic schools losing their
students at an accelerated rate

Catholic schools in Delaware have lost more than a fourth of their enrollment during the current decade, according to the state Department of Education. The down- ward trend has been accelerated  by the recession and slow recovery in the most recent years, but has been evident since 2000.

Two elementary schools -- St. Paul in Wilmington and Pope John Paul near Bellefonte -- will not re- open in August. Three others -- Corpus Christi in Elsmere, St. Catherine near Prices Corner, and St. Matthew in Woodcrest -- will be combined as All Saints School in the Corpus Christi building.

It is generally agreed that rising tuitions are the main reasons families are opting away from Catholic education. While financial aid is available at most schools, the ability of the diocese to subsidize budget shortfalls has been adversely impacted by its bankruptcy.

Despite a gloomy prognosis for the future, there have notable exceptions. Two new schools -- Christ the Teacher at Glasgow and St. Thomas More Academy at Magnolia -- have opened in recent years and both appear to be attracting enrollments.

And the second-largest high school -- Salesianum in Wilmington -- is operating at close to capacity and appears to be holding its own.

 

Grades

School 2010-11 2005-06 Change 2000-01 Change
9--12 Archmere Academy 475 509 -6.7% 482 -1.5%
k--8 Christ Our King       105  
k--8 Christ the Teacher 574 548 4.7%    
k--8 b-Corpus Christi 286 433 -33.9% 564 -49.3%
k--8 Holy Angeles 361 498 -27.5% 530 -31.9%
k--8 Holy Cross 569 629 -9.5% 642 -11.4%
k--8 c-Holy Rosary   232   431  
k--8 Holy Spirit       269  
k--8 Immaculate Heart of Mary 455 506 -10.1% 522 -12.8%
5--8 Nativity Preparatory 38 35 8.6%    
k--8 Our Lady of Fatima 250 544 -54.0% 570 -56.1%
k Our Lady of Grace   21   24  
9--12 Padua Academy 546 592 -7.8% 605 -9.8%
k--8 d-Pope John Paul 173        
k--8 Saint Ann 248 244 1.6% 266 -6.8%
k--8 Saint Anthony of Padua 234 367 -36.2% 512 -54.3%
k--8 b-Saint Catherine of Sienna 187 250 -25.2% 303 -38.3%
k--8 a-Saint Edmond 243 261 -6.9% 245 -0.8%
k--8 Saint Elizabeth Elementary 321 465 -31.0% 555 -42.2%
9--12 Saint Elizabeth High 403 427 -5.6% 438 -8.0%
k--8 Saint Hedwig   175   251  
k--8 d-Saint Helena   176   325  
k--8 Saint John the Beloved 586 583 0.5% 610 -3.9%
9--12 Saint Mark 1,224 1,583 -22.7% 1,550 -21.0%
k--8 Saint Mary Magdalen 493 526 -6.3% 537 -8.2%
k--8 b-Saint Matthew 169 364 -53.6% 479 -64.7%
k--8 d-Saint Paul 121 165 -26.7% 216 -44.0%
k--8 Saint Peter 203 269 -24.5% 260 -21.9%
k--8 Saint Peter Cathedral 193 211 -8.5% 216 -10.6%
9--12 Saint Thomas More Academy 240 163 47.2% 130 84.6%
k--8 Saint Thomas the Apostle   209   221  
9--12 Salesianum 1,023 1,038 -1.4% 1,025 -0.2%
5--8 Serviam Girls Academy 42        
k--8 Ursuline Academy Lower 312 395 -21.0% 463 -32.6%
9--12 Ursuline Academy Upper 508 615 -17.4% 671 -24.3%
  Total enrollments 10,477 13,033 -19.6% 14,017 -25.3%
a-had only grades 4--8 in 2005-06 and 2000-01        
b-being consolidated in August as All Saints at Corpus Christi      
c-previously consolidated as Pope John Paul at St. Helena      
d-will not reopen in August          

SOURCE: Delaware Department of Education

         

 

2011. All rights reserved.