Parents, students protest closing of Catholic school
Parents and students protested Sunday morning in front of St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church in downtown Las Vegas, in an effort to draw more attention to the sudden closure of St. Joseph's Catholic School.Photo: Video by ktnv.com
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Parents and students protested Sunday morning in front of St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church in downtown Las Vegas, in an effort to draw more attention to the sudden closure of St. Joseph's Catholic School.
Officials emailed parents just before Memorial Day Weekend to notify them that the doors will officially be shut on June 7, which is the last day of school.
"I think it's a travesty for the future of the Catholic religion in our city," said Grace Mitchell, parent.
Families are outraged with Father Dave Casaleggio, who took over the school two years ago. They said he's tearing apart the campus that's become their home.
Casaleggio said St. Joseph's would need to double in size to stay open and cover a $350,000 budget shortfall.
"This is not easy on me and not just because they're mad at me. Who wants to be in charge when something fails? Basically, it failed," said Father Casaleggio.
Parents told Action News there were numerous fundraisers held throughout the year and they question where all that money has gone. Casaleggio said that money helped with maintenance around the school, but it wasn't enough to dig the campus out of the hole.
Students are getting assistance with placement in other schools, but some of the teachers are left scrambling for new jobs.
"Those teachers have nothing. Some of them are just one year away from their 25 years and my heart just breaks for them," said Angela Sligar, graduate.
Casaleggio said he warned teachers a couple years ago that the end could be near. However, he does admit fault when it comes to how he broke the bad news to parents.
"There was a mistake made and that mistake was waiting so long before telling them but the reason for that was stupid. Hope against no hope that we could make a miracle happen," he explained.
Casaleggio said the property will soon go up for sale.