The financially troubled St. Helena Catholic School will close after the end of the current academic year in June, school officials confirmed Tuesday evening.
The closure was first announced in January. But parents, faculty and other supporters rallied to keep the school open with a campaign aiming to raise money, increase enrollment, and create a financially viable business plan.
“I want to give a big ‘thank you’ from the bottom of my heart to everyone who has contributed to maintain this school,” said Ernesto Martinez, president of the school’s Parent Teacher Organization.
That plan was presented to the diocese on Monday, Martinez said. The next day, parents got word that the 55-year-old school was closing.
“In the end, the obstacles we were facing are just too many, and we were fighting an uphill battle,” Principal Mary Herboth wrote in an email to parents. “Some of the things are just out of our control, and could not be fixed in a few short months.
Herboth thanked parents and faculty “who worked so hard these past few months to try to save the school.”
The school’s viability was threatened by declining enrollment, increasing need for tuition assistance, a lack of donors and volunteers, and the cancellation of the school’s annual wine auction during last October’s wildfires.