Our community was saddened to learn that the St. Stephen-St. Edward School will not reopen for the 2020-21 school year. This news was painful for many, and we send our best wishes to the school’s students, families, and staff.
We know too well the hurt and disappointment a school closure causes in a community. With that said, I must dispel two false rumors about this news circulating on social media.
The school district and church leaders never discussed renting the St. Stephen-St. Edward School before yesterday’s announcement. After receiving telephone calls about this rumor, I spoke with Father Jack to discuss the situation. Father Jack confirmed that St. Stephen-St. Edward School was not available to rent.
It was also brought to my attention that an online petition is now circulating, claiming the closure of St. Stephen-St. Edward School will financially burden Warwick Valley Central Schools, citing a total cost of almost $4 million. This claim is also false. Last year, about 63 students, who reside within the Warwick Valley CSD, spanning grades K-8, attended St. Stephen-St. Edward School. If these children enroll in our schools next year, this increase in student enrollment poses no significant financial burden on the district.
As we prepare to reopen our schools, please anticipate us sharing more information directly with you. While the use of social media platforms offers many benefits, it continues to be a challenge for us all when inaccurate information spreads quickly, often not verified or fact-checked.
DAVID LEACH, SUPERINTENDENT
WARWICK VALLEY CENTRAL SCHOOL DISTRICT