Justice Sotomayor’s emotions are shared by a generation of accomplished Latino and black professionals and public servants who went from humble roots to successful careers thanks to Catholic schools….The draw [of these schools], [Former Bronx Borough President Fernando] Ferrer said, was not only that the parochial school system provided a better education than available in the public schools, but also that it was a Catholic education rooted in shared values.
In the past, Catholic schools have routinely outperformed public schools on standardized tests, and they boast college admissions rates near 100 percent. Just as important for many Catholic parents, the schools have also helps parents bestow the values and culture handed down to them through the generations.Unfortunately, the decline of Catholic schools will be difficult to reverse. The NYT points to the expansion of charter schools, large tuition increases, the evaporation of cheap labor as nuns leave the teaching profession, and migration from urban environments to the suburbs and the South as important factors. None of these things are likely to change anytime soon.It’s an interesting take on the decline of a long-standing American institution and the effect it could have on the marginalized communities these schools have served for years. Read the whole thing.[Closed school image courtesy of Shutterstock]