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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — One Catholic elementary school in the Pittsburgh area will close in the spring, and several others will merge for the 2018-19 school year.

The Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh announced Saturday that the elementary education program at Saint Rosalia Academy in Greenfield will close at the end of this school year.

The Diocese says they will help current Saint Rosalia Academy students find another Catholic school to attend.

“In no way is this sign that somehow Catholic schools are dying. We’re trying to strengthen them,” Bishop David Zubik said.

In Monroeville, North American Martyrs School and Saint Bernadette School will merge their elementary education programs for the 2018-19 school year. Both buildings will remain open, however. Pre-K education programs will be located at the North American Martyrs campus and kindergarteners through 8th graders will attend the Saint Bernadette campus.

The schools will go by the new name Divine Mercy Academy after the merger.

Amy Wadas’ Report:

Also merging for the 2018-19 school year are Assumption School in Bellevue and Northside Catholic School in Brighton Heights.

The Assumption School campus will close and all pre-K – 8 education programs will be located at the Northside Catholic School campus. The school will operate under a new name starting in the fall. That name has not yet been determined.

“While schools may need to merge and close, we continue to work to strengthen the value of Catholic education for the students and families we are called to serve,” Dr. Michael Latusek, diocesan Superintendent for Catholic Schools, said in a release.

Declining enrollment and increasing financial struggles were cited as the reasons for the closure and mergers.

“It’s getting nearly impossible for most, if any, parishes to have a school today because one parish simply can’t handle what it costs to run a school,” Zubik said.

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