The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced today the closure of two schools in the region, including Bishop McDevitt High School in Wyncote (the second is John W. Hallahan Catholic Girls’ High School in Philadelphia). Both will close at the conclusion of the 2020-2021 academic year.
“Today is one of great sadness,” said Archbishop Nelson Pérez. “Catholic education is a precious gift that bears lifelong fruit to all those who receive it. The closure of any Catholic school is deeply painful, most especially for the students, teachers, faculty, staff, alumni, and supporters so intimately connected to them. I know that today’s announcement will weigh heavily on every member of the Hallahan and McDevitt school communities. I share in that grief. Understanding that this moment is one of extreme difficulty, I pledge that we will provide every possible assistance during this transition and that the rich legacy of these schools will be upheld. I have an obligation to ensure that each of our students is being provided with the best educational experience possible and that their teachers and coaches are provided with the resources to fulfill that mission. Given circumstances, those resources were depleting rapidly and could not be restored. My prayers are with all of you and my heartfelt gratitude goes out to our school families for choosing the gift of Catholic education as well as the faculty, administrators, and staff working each day to provide it.”
Bishop McDevitt Catholic High School was dedicated on December 8, 1958 and had its first graduating class in 1961. It was initially an all-boys school, but became co-educational in 1970. The class of 2019 graduated 99 students.
McDevitt is the second Catholic high school in the area that is set to close after the current school year. In October, The Provincial Council of the Sisters of Saint Basil the Great announced that it is closing Saint Basil Academy in Jenkintown.
The announcement includes more detais regarding a sustainability study for the archdiocese’s schools in Philadelphia, Montgomery, Bucks, Chester, and Delaware counties. The study showed that McDevitt was operating at 40% of enrollment capacity and the forecast was for a continued decline in enrollment.
You can find the entire announcement here.