Facts of Redemptorist High/Jr High closing and reaction
BATON ROUGE - The Diocese of Baton Rouge announced Friday they would be shutting down Redemptorist High School and Junior High.
The announcement was made by Bishop Robert Muench at a press conference called Friday morning. He cited plummeting enrollment as the primary reason for the decision, and said the schools would close at the end of the current academic year.
"The decision was reached after much prayer, reflection and consultation," the bishop said. "We understand the pain, disappointment and hardship this decision can bring to the members of the Redemptorist family, and we share a deep sense of sadness, grief and loss."
Redemptorist High was founded in 1949 and boasted 1,100 students in 1980. Muench said the schools were projected to only have an enrollment of 150 students in 2015.
Redemptorist Elementary would remain open because it still has enough students to cover operational expenses. It merged with St. Isidore and St. Gerard schools in 2010, and there are plans to expand it to include 7th and 8th grade in the next two years.
The bishop said five feasibility studies and other work have been done in the last dozen years to find ways to keep the schools open. He said recent developments in recruitment made it clear the school "could no longer be maintained past the current academic year."
The state voucher program also contacted the school in October to let them know they would not be eligible to receive more students next year, which Muench said was a significant impact in their projected enrollment. He said the students brought in on the scholarship program were learning, but did not produce high enough results to meet state standards for the voucher program.
The school posted information about how high school and voucher students would be affected on their website.
Stay with News 2 for more updates on this breaking story.