SAN ANTONIO – After over 60 years of service to the San Antonio community, St. Margaret Mary School is closing their doors.

The Archdiocesan Department of Catholic Schools and Father Jimmy Drennan, pastor of St. Margaret Mary Church, announced on July 17 that the school would permanently close its doors and not reopen for the 2017-2018 school year.

According to the Archdiocese of San Antonio, only 53 students were registered for the fall semester. Financial projections for the school, even with an enrollment of 117 students, indicated that the school would still operate at a significant financial deficit for the upcoming year.

“Making the decision to close the school has been difficult and painful. St. Margaret Mary has been an important part of this community since 1956, educating and forming many of today’s community leaders,” Superintendent Marti West said.

Earlier in the spring, it was announced that the school would cease to operate its junior high due to low enrollment in sixth to eighth grade. Students were encouraged to continue their studies at the new St. Gerard Regional Catholic Middle School. According to the Archdiocese of San Antonio, summer enrollment figures also indicated low in the pre-school grades, with no students enrolled in the pre-K 3 program.

St. Margaret Mary School was dedicated on Oct. 21, 1956, by Archbishop Robert E. Lucey and the school opened with an enrollment of 746 and peaked with 1,038 students in 1960.

Archbishop Gustavo García-Siller, MSpS, said he hopes and prays that all the students will be able to transfer to one of the other Catholic schools in the area and that the teachers and administrators will be able to continue working in Catholic education.

“I particularly want to thank Father Jimmy Drennan for all of his efforts on behalf of the students at St. Margaret Mary School. I know the decision to close the school was not an easy one to make, but we carry on in faith,” the archbishop said.

A meeting with parents and staff will be held at the school on Wednesday, July 19, at 7 p.m. to discuss plans moving forward for the students and personnel. There are 39 Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of San Antonio with a total enrollment serving more than 12,000 students, according to their website.

For more information, you can visit the Archdiocese of San Antonio.