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Community members raise over $431,000 for St. Germaine Catholic School

Community members raise over $431,000 for St. Germaine Catholic School
Posted at 6:21 PM, Mar 01, 2024

ST. CLAIR SHORES, Mich. (WXYZ) — Parents and community members rallied around St. Germaine Catholic School after learning it was going to close.

Now, they are just waiting to see if their efforts to save the school were successful.

“Kids who have graduated still come back to help with the sports teams and all the volunteer efforts we do, so it’s just been a great community and it’d be a shame to close it down,” said Phil Jones, parent.

Phil Jones has two kids at St. Germaine. He was one of the many parents who helped raise money to keep the school open.

Back in January, school administration announced that they had been running an operational deficit of about $150,000.

“We were both surprised and it got everybody motivated all at once to kind of come together for the school and the kids,” Jones added.

The Archdiocese of Detroit gave the community a chance to save the school. To pull it off, they had to raise $150,000 and enroll 150 students in the school by March 1st.

“It was a lofty goal, they wanted both cash donations and pledges just to show we were good for the current and good for the future,” said Jones.

Parents and community members were able to raise more than $431,000 in donations and future pledges.

“We’ve got so much to offer and we want so many more families for so many more years to experience what we have,” said Sharon Witte who has two kids at the school.

When it comes to the staff at St. Germaine, they are just as thrilled to have the community support.

“We’ve never witnessed anything like this before, we know we have something special here, we love coming into work every day, we are a solid family,” said Debbie Talanges, a teacher at St. Germaine.

As of right now, the school is three students shy of having 150 students enrolled.

“Even with the news that the school is planning on closing in the fall, we’ve had a good amount of new families come in and say they would still like to be part of it if it stays open so I’m very optimistic,” said Jones.

According to the Archdiocese of Detroit, they are working with St. Germaine to determine next steps.

They have not provided a date on when they will decide if the school will close or not.