Tuesday, June 22, 1999

$1M grant to help with tuition

200 children now can attend Catholic schools

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        A $1 million grant announced Monday will pay for more than 200 inner-city Cincinnati children to attend one of eight Catholic elementary schools in their neighborhoods next year.

        “It just came into being, and I'm just thrilled,” said Sister Kathryn Ann Connelly, superintendent of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati schools, about the grant from the Zenon C.R. Hansen Foundation in Edgewood, Colo.

        Hansen foundation officials will present the $1 million check at a luncheon Wednesday in Cincinnati.

        The grant will provide four-year scholarships for first- through eighth-graders who haven't attended the local Catholic schools before. It's the second-largest grant ever to the Catholic Inner-City Schools Education Fund.

        The largest came in October 1997 from Cincinnati financier Carl H. Lindner and family, who gave $1.5 million to buy com puters for the schools.

        Sister Connelly said many students come from one-parent households. Their parents sacrifice a relatively large amount of money to send them to private schools.

        “They come from homes in which the poverty level is great, but the love is very great, too,” she said.

        About two-thirds of the 1,535 children who attended the eight schools last year lived in poverty and were on scholarship. About two-thirds were minorities, and the same amount weren't Catholic.

        No child gets a full scholarship, said Dan Andriacco, spokesman for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, which includes 19 counties in southern Ohio and operates 134 schools. Parents pay as much as they can afford, so they have a stake in their children's educations.

        Sister Connelly said tuition averages $1,200 among the schools, although it varies at each. The schools spend about $2,600 yearly on each student. The difference is paid by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, as well as corporate and individual donations, which reached a record $1.18 million this year before the Hansen grant.

        Parents who wish to enroll their child with a scholarship must contact the principal of the school in their neighborhood.

        The schools are: St. Boniface in Northside, Corryville Catholic, St. Francis de Sales in Walnut Hills, St. Francis Seraph in Over-the-Rhine, Holy Family in East Price Hill, St. Joseph in West End, St. Mark in Evanston and Resurrection of Our Lord in Price Hill.


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