One of the most historic national powerhouses in America may be shutting its doors at the end of the school year unless $10-$20 million are raised by January, according to a statement released by the school’s Board of Trustees on Thursday.
“This afternoon our Board of Trustees met with the faculty, staff and students and made an announcement we would rather not make,” read the statement. “Regrettably, due to ongoing financial deficits, it appears that Saint Anthony High School may have to close next June unless we raise between $10 million and $20 million by January. We prayed this day will never come, but we must be realistic and make certain that our faculty, staff – and most especially our students – are as prepared as can be for that eventuality.”
The Friars are regarded as one of the top basketball programs on an annual basis, despite not even having a gymnasium or weight room in the school. Its Hall of Fame head coach Bob Hurley has led the program to a legendary run the last four decades, which has included a record of 1162-119, 29 state titles, four national titles (1989, 1996, 2008, 2011), and eight undefeated seasons (1974, 1989, 1996, 2004, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2016). Hurley, a former correctional officer, ranks third all-time on the National Federation of State High School Association’s list of coaches with most wins in boys’ basketball history.
“The School has experienced a confluence of circumstances over the past several years that have taken a large financial toll,” added Thursday’s statement. “These include: a double-digit decline in enrollment; the gap between what is charged for tuition and the actual cost for educating a student – $6,500 tuition vs. $14,000; a deteriorating physical plant; heightened competition for students by charter and public schools; changing demographics in the area; and increased operating costs.”
For those interested in helping, please visit www.stanthonyhighschool.org