Catholic cuts couldn’t be done ‘episodically’

Archbishop Charles Chaput.

Students, parents and teachers are still reeling from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s decision to close 44 elementary and four high schools in June, but officials said the massive cuts are a result of years of inaction.

While a handful of schools have been closed in recent years, several schools have continued operating at a deficit due to the gap between tuition and costs per pupil.

“If the governance model that we’ve talked about works, we won’t be doing 40 schools again ever — because you can’t manage something episodically like we’ve done,” said John Quindlen, chair of the 16-member Blue Ribbon Commission that Cardinal Justin Rigali assembled 13 months ago.

Under the new model, there will be an Executive Board of Education chaired by the auxiliary bishop responsible for overseeing Catholic education and four additional boards focusing on elementary schools, secondary schools, religious education and special education.

While they acknowledge the pain in the short-term, officials hope the moves will stop the bleeding and facilitate growth.

“I have no crystal ball,” Catholic schools teachers’ union President Rita Schwartz said, noting about 150 teachers work in the four high schools and another 400 to 500 grammar school teachers could be affected. “I would hope that what they put forth to us today is going to work and work well.”

Petitions begin

An online petition urging the Archdiocese to keep     St. Hubert School for Girls open had more than     5,000 signatures already.     A comment from one signer read: “I want my youngest sister (who is a Sohpomore) to graduate as a Bambi like I did and my other sister. Brown and Gold Pride!”


Mets mascot Mr. Met target of Bill Clinton…

Mets mascot Mr. Met has told how he ended up in the crosshairs of a Secret Service sniper rifle. The man behind the Mr. Met…


Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.


African couple claiming misidentification in robbery case to…

At a bail hearing today for Vickson and Lorfu Korlewala, charged in the robbery of an 80-year-old woman, bail was reduced from $1 million total to $500,000.


Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."


Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…


Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.


Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.


Both feet on the ground with Aimee Mann…

What began with a cool double-bill of Ted Leo opening for Aimee Mann morphed into a full-fledged collaborative project that they're calling The Both. “There…


Rangers draw first blood against Flyers in Game…

Brad Richards and Derek Stepan scored power-play goals 47 seconds apart to lead the Rangers to a 4-1 win.


Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.


Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.


Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.


Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.


Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.


Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.


Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.