Saint Vincent’s Day School Closing
For many decades Saint Vincent’s has provided special education from Kindergarten through High School with an average student enrollment of 120 students per day. In recent years we discontinued both our elementary and middle school classrooms due to sustained reductions in enrollment. With the addition of increased capacity for in-district high school students within the Fall River Public Schools and other school districts in the Southeast Region, Saint Vincent’s student enrollment at the High School level has also been impacted. It has now become necessary for us to make the difficult decision to close our day school program.
We have made every effort to maintain our school program and provide effective education and social/emotional supports for our students while enrollment each year has been below budget. Our students have done well. Students have met the graduation criteria of their local school districts; we have graduated students with diplomas each academic year. Our students have been successful at passing the MCAS qualifying tests required by the state; they have been able to learn to deal effectively with the many barriers to successful education; and they have been supported to become effective young adults as they venture into the community post-graduation. We have had a dedicated, committed staff who have met each challenge straightforwardly. They adapted programming in response to each challenge to ensure that our students were learning and growing consistently with their specific IEP goals.
Unfortunately, given the sustained lower enrollment of students, Saint Vincent’s can no longer carry the financial burden of the school. After much thought and consideration we have decided to close the Saint Vincent’s Day School effective March 30, 2018. Our first priority as we moved to close the School was the well-being of our students and staff. We have worked collaboratively with DESE, local school districts, the students and their parents/guardians to procure alternative placements to ensure that they would continue their education uninterrupted and in compliance with their IEP.
We regret the need to take this action and we have made every effort to avoid this closure. Saint Vincent's is not facing these challenges alone; many special education programs within the state have experienced similar challenges.
Saint Vincent’s has undergone dramatic changes over the last ten years or more. We are proud of the stellar work that our school staff have done over the years to engage and support our students' wide ranging skills, abilities, and challenges. We have modified our programming, service delivery types and locations, and created and implemented new and different levels of care. Saint Vincent’s has developed different staffing positions and functions to ensure that we continue to deliver effective and clinically sound services in our remaining network of programs and services.
For more information please contact Saint Vincent's at (508) 679-8511.