Bishop won't be swayed by parent protests over school closings

Apr 9, 2014

Two days after a protest outside his Oakland Place mansion, Bishop Richard Malone says his mind won't be changed on the closing of ten Catholic Schools in the diocese. 

Parents, teachers and students from some of the soon-to-be closed schools held a prayerful protest outside the Bishop's home on Sunday, hoping to convince him to reverse his decision.  Parents from St. Bernadette in Orchard Park, St. Francis of Assisi in Tonawanda and Annunciation in Elma have been especially critical of the Bishop.

Bishop Richard Malone.
Credit WBFO News file photo

But in a WBFO News interview Tuesday, Malone said he won't be swayed by the protests.

"What families are focused on is the individual school in which their child is enrolled.  I get it.   But we have 45 parish elementary schools.   There's no way with our demographic decline that we can keep all those schools going," Malone said.  "It can't be done."

Even if the parents succeeded in obtaining a reprieve from the Vatican, Malone said the diocese would appeal.  He said planned change is preferable to allowing schools to die on the vine one at a time.