Six Catholic elementary schools -- including campuses in Boyle Heights and Silver Lake -- are closing due to low enrollment, shifting demographics and financial difficulties, with the coronavirus pandemic likely providing the final nail in their coffins, according to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
The following schools will be consolidated with other area Catholic schools at the end of the current school year in June.
-- Assumption School (Boyle Heights)
-- Blessed Sacrament School (Hollywood)
-- St. Catherine of Sienna School (Reseda)
-- St. Ferdinand School (San Fernando)
-- St. Francis of Assisi School (Silver Lake)
-- St. Madeline School (Pomona).
"These six schools had been trying to overcome financial challenges long before the pandemic," said Paul Escala, Superintendent of Catholic Schools. "After careful discernment with Archdiocesan and school leadership, the decision was reached to consolidate these schools with nearby schools to create a union that would strengthen the school communities in the area so that all students can continue to receive the quality Catholic education that our schools provide."
The announcement came earlier this week as Archdiocese officials noted the academic gains made by students during the pandemic, as schools continued welcoming back students now that restrictions are being eased.
The L.A. Times said that about 350 students are enrolled at the six schools with a staff of 50.
Assumption, located in Boyle Heights, the corner of Evergreen Avenue and Malabar Street, has been around since the early 1950s, according to one former student.
Located one block north of Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake, Saint Francis of Assisi opened in September 1938 with 92 students, according the school website.
Both schools currently have about 75 students each in grades K-8, according to a spokesperson for the archdiocese.
What will school facilities, which are owned by their respective parishes, will be assessed for new uses after the end of the school year, said the spokesperson.
This story was updated with details about the Boyle Heights and Silver Lake schools.