Stella Maris Regional Catholic School will close after the end of this school year, according to a letter sent to parents from Father Mike Rieder of St. Therese of Lisieux Parish in Montauk.
“I have prayed that I would never have to write this letter,” he wrote. But because of low enrollment numbers for the 2011-2012 school year, it’s come to this. “We have no choice but to close our school at the end of this academic year,” he continued.
The school collected enrollment forms for 44 students, which is less than half the amount needed (102) to keep the school in operation next year.
On April 12, parents and teachers learned from School Superintendent of the Diocese of Rockville Centre, Sister Joanne Callahan, that the school faced a $480,000 deficit. In order to keep the school in operation, the diocese provided an austerity budget, required parents to raise $116,250 by August 31 and wanted to ensure the school maintain an enrollment of 102.