Saint Wendelin students uncertain of their future

Saint Wendelin students uncertain of their future

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - A community is in shock after learning that one of its high schools will be closing.

Saint Wendelin Catholic School was founded back in 1873, and for the last 144 years has been a foundation piece of the Fostoria community.

But due to declining enrollment and funding, the parish has decided to close the high school at the end of this school year.

High school enrollment has continued to decline from 133 students in 2013 to 96 this year.

Only 70 students were projected to be enrolled for next school year.

Father Todd Dominique explained that between the shrinking operating budget and much-needed renovations for the school building, the parish would have ended up with a $400,000 deficit after the next school year.

Father Dominique said it would be irresponsible to drain all of the parish's resources.

"All in all I think it was really a sad decision, a hard decision to have to make. But when we make a decision like this, it's to really save the overall production here of the parish community itself," said Father Dominique.

Now with the announcement that the high school is closing, the remaining high school students and 8th graders are wondering where they will be attending school next year.

Students at Saint Wendelin feel a close bond with their classmates because of the smaller number of students.

"It's just one big family. That was our motto a few years ago, and it truly is. Because everyone knows everyone, we are so small that everyone is just a part of each others lives." said Saint Wendelin senior Jaden Ogg.

Which is why for current 8th through 11th graders, it is difficult to think of not attending classes together next year.

Since Fridays announcement, one question has been on their minds.

" 'What school are you going to?' That's mainly the question." said sophomore Samuel Seibert. "Everyone is curious if we're able to go to the same school, or if not, and everyone is trying to get them to all go to the same school that they're going to."

St. Wendelin Parish administration has already been working with Tiffin Calvert and Fremont St Joe's to see if these students could attend those schools.

"Not only guide them, but try to be an advocate for our families and our students as well." said Father Dominique

The plan is to move the kindergarten through 8th grade school out of the current building and into the former St Wendelin school across the street from the church on Wood Street for the 2018-19 school year.

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