Updated 4:40 p.m.
YONKERS, N.Y. – St. Casimir Parochial School in Yonkers will close its doors for good at the end of the school year, according to parents.
The Archdiocese of New York will shutter the Nepperhan Avenue school as part of a consolidation effort.
In a letter sent home to parents Tuesday, Superintendent of Schools Timothy McNiff called the closings a difficult, but necessary decision.
“Please know that this painful decision was made only as a last resort, and that despite everyone’s best efforts, it was not possible to change the outcome of the situation,” he wrote.
Archdiocesan officials are expected to make an official announcement later Tuesday afternoon.
Our Lady of Fatima in Scarsdale was also notified it would close at the end of the year, according to reports.
In November, 110-year-old St. Casimir was designated “at risk” of closing amid financial concerns at the archdiocese. It was one of 26 archdiocesan schools, including four in Westchester County, targeted after an evaluation process involving school boards and a reconfiguration committee.
Each school was given two months to come up with a long-term financial plan to convince the archdiocese it should remain open.
At St. Casimir, administrators learned that, among other things, the school would have to come up with a plan to raise an additional $140,000 a year for the next three years.
At a December meeting, school leaders and parents pitched a number of ideas, including fundraisers and tuition hikes.
But in the end, it wasn’t enough.
Outside the St. Casimir Tuesday, parents said the news the school would be shuttered came as a surprise.
“It’s devastating,” Ssive Sola said. “As a parent it kills me. Its a shame."
Sola said the school’s plan would have exceeded that amount and even generated a surplus in the near future.
“We completely superseded their expectations and it meant nothing,” Sola said. “Apparently that wasn’t enough. It doesn’t make sense.”
Now, Sola and parents of more than 230 other students are faced task of finding another school for their children to attend next year. In addition, more than a dozen teachers will be left without jobs when the school year ends.
“These poor teachers know they are being left without jobs and they have teach for the next five months knowing their not going to have a job,” Sola said.
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