Written by Christy Hinko Friday, 22 June 2012 00:00On Tuesday, June 19 the students, teachers, alumni and families of St. John Baptist De LaSalle Regional School, Farmingdale’s Catholic elementary school, held an emotional “farewell” prayer service at the St. Kilian’s auditorium, followed by a reception.
The closing is a very sad event, not only for the church parishioners and students, but also for the Farmingdale community. Church families have written to the Observer since the December announcement sharing their grief and disappointment about the school’s closing, but also demonstrating their commitment to maintaining Catholic education for their children, something that is becoming more difficult to achieve.
In addition to the school closing, in order for students to maintain their Catholic school education, it will require many of them to go their separate ways, and disperse into another area school. Continuing Catholic students from LaSalle will attend St. Edward’s, Holy Family, Our Lady of Mercy, Maria Regina, or St. William Abbot at the start of next school year.
Monday, June 18 marked the final full day of school for the children, but the school will finally close its doors in a few short weeks, as announced by the diocese in December. According to the school’s own homepage, its website is scheduled to be deactivated on July 6, including any remaining email accounts through the school. Parents can still call the school’s main office for residual questions for administration concerns for the next several weeks, although it has yet to be determined what will become of the actual school building.
The decision to close six Catholic schools on Long Island was explained by the diocese as a decline in enrollment and economic difficulties. In addition to the Farmingdale school, St. Catherine of Sienna School in Franklin Square, St. Ignatius Loyola School in Hicksville, Sacred Heart School in North Merrick, Our Lady of Perpetual Help School in Lindenhurst and Prince of Peace Regional School in Sayville will also close at school year’s end.