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Mooney may be on the move to southern Mahoning County



Published: Wed, September 4, 2013 @ 12:05 a.m.

photo

Murry

Staff report

YOUNGSTOWN

The move of Cardinal Mooney High School to southern Mahoning County is still a possibility.

In a news release late Tuesday, Bishop George V. Murry of the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown said he would agree to move Mooney to a “suitable location in the southern tier of Mahoning County if the results of the financial feasibility study indicate there is sufficient financial support for a new school building and for an endowment fund for scholarships for financially needy students.”

The five-member committee, which the bishop established to review all the information concerning Cardinal Mooney, made the recommendation late last week, said Dr. Nicholas Wolsonovich, diocesan superintendent of Catholic schools.

Wolsonovich said new information on the estimated cost of removing and abating asbestos in the school building on Erie Street on the city’s South Side was among factors in the bishop’s decision.

That figure could be in the millions, he said. The estimated cost of renovation, about $15 million, would increase because of the asbestos situation.

But Wolsonovich emphasized that other factors, in addition to the asbestos issue, played a part in the recommendation. He said the goal is to make available a Catholic education to the greatest number of Catholic families and non-Catholics.

Wolsonovich said the feasibility study would gauge financial support for the estimated $25 million it would take for a new school building and property acquisition.

He continued that Cardinal Mooney’s endowment fund, which provides money for scholarships, is about $1.5 million. The bishop would like to see $5 million in the endowment fund to provide scholarships for economically disadvantaged students.

The money in the endowment fund would be considered as part of the financial feasibility study.

As part of this decision, the bishop consulted with the executive committee of Ursuline High School and Cardinal Mooney board of directors about the possibility of a merger of the two schools.

Both groups did not think a merger was a viable option. The bishop’s five-member review committee also did not support a merger of the two schools.

Wolsonovich said the Rev. Gerald DeLucia, president of Cardinal Mooney, and its board of directors will develop an overall plan for the new building, including a funding plan and an endowment fund.

Last year, Mooney officials began exploring whether to renovate the school building or construct a new one in southern Mahoning County.

Initial reports pegged the new construction at $25 million with the renovation at $18 million, but now the asbestos removal or abatement is increasing that figure. Mooney’s board of directors recommended moving.


Comments

1willinnyny(66 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Why does part of me feel like Cardinal Mooney HS is running away from the minority populations that now surround the present school building?

I say, "Bloom Where You Are Planted."

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2misterlee(118 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Good job Mooney! You killed the neighborhood your school is in by placing your stadium in the middle of Rush Blvd turning it into a dead end and a haven for crack dealers. Now that the neighborhood by you is completely decimated you want to just pack up and run away. Stay where you are and be part of the solution to the problem you created, don't hide from it.

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3Millerh113(86 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

There's a brand new high school in youngstown with an enrollment of less than a hundred students. I refer to chaney high school Why not approach the city Board of Ed about buying this under used bldg. Current chaney students could be enrolled in brand new volney rogers and brand new wilson.

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4mrblue(923 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Could it be that the Bishop changed his mind because of the drop off in the weekly collection basket? Money talks.

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5Tigerlily(472 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

He would like to see 5 million in the endowment fund. Sounds like he's telling the Richie Richs who want him to move the school to put their money where their mouths are. Pay up, and then we'll move.

That's a decent maneuver on his part, if in fact it's a maneuver.

If he's just bluffing and they move anyway, it was all for show for the public to make it look like he cared.

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6ComeOnMan(17 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

They don't have the money to fix the school or relocate it and have their hands out asking for money.

If the people have to fund everything then what do they need the DOY for? What is their annual budget? Based on how they handled this so badly it should all be questioned.

The kids in the city can go to Ursuline. 5 million are you kidding me. With Ytown schools they go for free under the voucher anyway.

I think people want to help but the comments coming out of there are red flags. How could you expect them to handle 25 mil project with the way they have handled everything to date.

Take over one of the new City Schools not being used or go to Ursuline.

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7filter(2 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

@Comeonman
Just watch how its handled. It will be spectacular!

No need to take over one of the city schools we WILL build our own!

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8debbie2751(2 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Your are missing the boat people! Come on Who is in charge here? The Bishop stated that committees from Mooney and Ursuline did not want to combine. They should have combined 10 years ago. When the Bishop combined most of the the area Catholic Churches a few years ago no one had a say so. Combine the schools and be done with it. How long do you think these schools can survive with the declining enrollment and the high tuition costs?

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9dmacker(224 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

It would seem that the neighborhood around Cardinal Mooney was deteriorating years before Rush Blvd was closed. The fact is that the student population has moved to the south and most of the students have to drive or are driven into the city. This would be an opportunity to center the school into the community it serves.

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10EWandF(22 comments)posted 7 months, 2 weeks ago

Filter, who are you kidding?? Seriously!!! As a practicing Catholic, my envelope will be used in part to subsidize this racist and elitist move!! Sure, the big guns will pony up at first...but, who will maintain it? Church envelopes!!! Build your own!! Go ahead and see if you can do it without the help of the parishes of the Youngstown Diocese!! You may be able to pull the wool over eyes of others, but, I served on a parish council/finance and I know how churches are assessed to support these schools!!
Also...the endowment?? Sure to any inner city youth who can run the football. !!!! All smoke and mirrors to show that they have a heart for the inner city youth!! NOT!
Hypocrisy at it's best. Shames me as a Catholic!!! Bishop succumbed to the monetary powers that be.!!! That is what guides organized religion And Catholics are obviously no exception!!!

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11twentyonetwelve(93 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

Rich elitist fools. I gave up the Catholic faith years ago. Grasping hands and bleeding hearts will only cry out for more. Drink wine from a gold cup while preaching about helping those with less. The hypocrisy is overwhelming. Its easy to be a saint for an hour on Sundays. They leave church smiling and go back to their wicked ways... until next Sunday.

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12jmagaratz(154 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

1) practice of birth control severely limits ability to maintain "full enrollment" of student numbers in future years
2) preponderance of "lay faculty" insures that the cost of "Catholic Education" can only increase
3) expectation that Catholics from many parishes will support indirect taxation for the support of a new high school is example of "la la land" thinking that is unrealistic.....
4) best bet is to let the money folks at Ursuline slug it out with the Mooney money folks....doubt that there is willingness on either side to spend themselves into oblivion....may lead to conclusion that merger is strong viable option....

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13southsidedave(4709 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

$25 million is a hefty sum that will no doubt require a "hands out" approach for many years to come...

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14zz3(874 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

good job Mooney! Who the heck wants to go to school dodging bullets and drug dealers? Willinnyny, are you serious? You mean possibly get "Planted while trying to learn" don't you? Take a look at YSU's enrollment. Seem a little low. DUHHH. People are not going to come to Thugstown with the stats this area has and the subculture within, as simple as that! Mooney hopefully will make the right decision and get out of Dodge! Go to where people that want to learn can go in an do that in a safe atmosphere. Good luck Mooney

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15dd933(216 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

If Mooney stays they can be part of the solution for the concentrated poverty of the neighborhood, if they move they contribute to the problem.

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16Rooster(78 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

If Mooney is counting on suburb parents helping their bottom line with this move, they better figure out their academic problems. Being part of the Mooney family ain't going to count for the non-Catholics, and the suburb kids aren't all about sports like the inner city kids who want to go there. Too bad no one is looking out to improve Catholic education in the area and involving Ursuline, who runs the best academic program, with better teachers and administrators. This will make Ursuline decline and they were doing the best job. Just another one of those old stories about the better outfit losing out to the pushiest mouths and the Bishop not a strong enough leader to move out in front of these types. Even though he knows what he should be doing, he can't get it done. Scooted off to a meeting and can't comment is just par for the course.

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17formerdemliberal(181 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

Saint Eddie Muransky/DeBartolo Memorial High School. Build a new football stadium while your at it and tail gate at the Lake Club. Better than taking your life in your hands on the north side of Y-town.

The big money is there already or else there wouldn't have been the third (by my count) flipflop by the bishop in the last several months. No leadership from the diocese. Bishop is a pawn in a big money game to start raiding best athletes from Poland/Canfield to upgrade declining football program. And has been previously stated, maintenance of this new Taj Mahal will fall on the backs of parishioners.

One more thing. The bishop didn't seem very concerned about declining enrollments when merging long-time local churches into the mess of conglomerates that currently exist in the diocese. Merging parishioners were told to work together to build on our differences. But when it comes to merging two Catholic high schools, all of a sudden the superintendent expresses concern about enrollment losses. Hypocrisy at it's finest. I can only say that when my church merged with another, the 50-year personal identity I had since my baptism with that church was lost. Haven't been back since.

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18tdclac69(13 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

Well said ( former demliberal)- agree 100% especially your last paragraph!!

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19ringo(12 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

Money is the whole issue here.

It's about getting donations to build it so they don't have to spend their own money. They would rather keep their own money for retired priests and nuns to live in luxury at the expense of their teachers and other employees.

Do you know priests and nuns never pay a dime for health care, and that is forever. When diocesan teachers rand other employees retire they lose their health care completely and don't even have an option to buy.

Mooney will get a new high school when the wealthy from Boardman and Poland and Canfiield ante up, and not until.

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20ringo(12 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

I find it funny that that there are 3 Catholic High Schools in the Youngstown-Warren area and all three of them are one-third full.

The answer seems pretty obvious to me as what the Diocese of Youngstown should do.........but the will NEVER, EVER close the shrine that is Ursuline.

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21Education_Voter(816 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

Ringo, you are sooo off-base.

"The Diocese" is not priests and a handful of remaining nuns. It is the parishioners. Few, if not none, of us would have any problem contributing to healthcare costs for priests and nuns. The fact is that the Ursuline nuns have done a good job of taking care of their own community.

Meanwhile, what you call "the shrine that is Ursuline" is also the better school in the better building in the better location. Wake up. People who are devout Catholics would no doubt enroll their children in Ursuline just as they did before Mooney was opened during the baby boom.

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22Irrigateirritate(2 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

If you look on Google Maps, you can see the stakes already in place at the Bruno Compound off Tippy Road...I mean it's already gated, high security already, much safer for the rich kids...

Anyone else notice how Jane Marie left, John Young stepped in and now Mooney needs a new high school? Must be some good Koolaid they are drinking....I think I'll start taking my offerings elsewhere...grow a set of nuts Murray.

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23zz3(874 comments)posted 7 months, 1 week ago

much safer for any kid!! Or are you saying poor kids inner city poor kids are stupid??? At its current location A.K.A Vietnam, the "poor stupid inner city poor kids" as you stated irrigate, must be causing all the crime in that area. Or are rich kids that much "boring" that they just don't see carrying a gun, 20" wheels, drug dealers, shooting people, very much fun!! Just sayin...

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24DeAngelis(5 comments)posted 7 months ago

I am a Ursuline Grad class of "52 from Boardman and a charter member of Mooney's Booster Club and a personal friend of Bishop Hughes the first head of Cardinal Mooney with whom I stayed in contact with until his death at the age of 93. I am not a resident of Youngstown or Boardman now and am not here to tell the residents of Youngstown or Boardman what they should do as to the location of a new or renovated school but I think that whether you stay in Youngstown or move to Boardman you have to include as part of the cost the removal of asbestos from Cardinal Mooney and the tearing down of their building. I believe that is you moral obligation to Youngstown. It just cannot be another abandoned building in Youngstown.

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25polhack(111 comments)posted 7 months ago

I graduated from Mooney in the sixties. It was a financial burden for my parents, a privilege for me and a good education as I could pay attention to the teachers and not some insolent fool running his/her mouth as a way to build their "gangsta cred". Punks weren't tolerated by the school or by parents who were shelling out college prices for kids to attend it. Everything has changed now, including the price, which is in the thousands each year per student. Combine schools, remodel,
move; none of it matters if parents have no financial skin in the game and schools have no ability or the will to provide appropriate discipline, including expelling chronic problem punks.

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26tired2(4 comments)posted 7 months ago

I agree with polhack. My child just started at Mooney an I am appalled at the stories of disruptive behavior and disrespect. Sit outside when school lets out to get a real eye and earful. You can't expect parents to pay college level tuition for the same junk that goes on in public school. I am even more amazed at the number of parents who truly think it is OK. The school website lists the number of Catholics vs "Other Faiths" back in 2011-2012 school year. At that time 37% were non-catholic. I bet the number of non-catholics is much higher now and would love to see the numbers. That and vouchers will be the slow death of this school just as it was of the feeder schools that have closed.

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27interestedparty(2 comments)posted 7 months ago

@tired-vouchers had no hand in the closing of the Catholic feeder schools. Economics and population shifts did. If anything vouchers as you refer to them have helped bolster enrollment at feeder schools and high schools.

@polhac-This isn't the sixties and parents definitely have "skin in the game". The school you graduated from in the sixties and I graduated from in the eighties no longer exists. The school is much better now then when we went there. It was a great school then and it is a better one today.The schools has and does exercise appropriate discipline.
UHS and CMHS do a nice job of graduating well rounded students. Are either of them perfect? No, but neither are any of the othe schools in this or any other area.

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28struthersfan(8 comments)posted 7 months ago

Anyone with any sort of reasoning knows that ideally the bishop should combine both of the schools like was done with the many parish consolidations/closings.
Several elementary schools were also closed due to declining enrollments.

For me, it's just a matter of time. Especially if the enrollments show any kind of decline.

Realistically, Ursuline could handle both enrollments at it's campus. Use Mooney's building until Ursuline is remodeled. Or as has been suggested, there are plenty of unused buildings throughout the city that could house a combined school. Really, would it really kill people to get used to a "Youngstown Central Catholic" high school? They may fight it for years to come, but I think eventually a merger will happen. It's a matter of time.

I understand mergers and closings are sore subjects. No one wants to lose their identity.
However sometimes you have to sacrifice in order to remain solvent.
If Mooney does get a new building in the suburbs as anticipated, the real loser in the equation will be Ursuline. Due to it's age and a possible drop in enrollment, the bishop would have no financial reason to keep it open. Alumni or not, UHS would be a goner.

Rather than relocate far from the city, the bishop needs to look at other options available right in Youngstown.
Including consolidation.

Just my opinion.

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29interestedparty(2 comments)posted 7 months ago

@struthersfan-Ursuline cannot handle both enrollments at its campus. The school although larger at one time is not suited for both schools.

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30Ypublius(20 comments)posted 6 months, 4 weeks ago

In 1969, Ursuline had a graduating class of 400 seniors....so yes, UHS could easily accomodate all the Catholic high school students in Mahoning County.

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31city_resident(498 comments)posted 6 months, 4 weeks ago

Students per classroom, and students per teacher ratios have changed dramatically since 1969. So, even if UHS could accommodate 400 students then, it can't today, and still provide a learning environment that is competitive with other schools.

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