St. Bernard's to close St. Paul grade...

St. Bernard's to close St. Paul grade school at end of school year

There are 124 comments on the TwinCities.com story from Mar 23, 2009, titled St. Bernard's to close St. Paul grade school at end of school year. In it, TwinCities.com reports that:

Saint Bernard's Grade School in St. Paul will close at the end of the academic year, the Archdiocese of St.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at TwinCities.com.

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Bailed

Saint Paul, MN

#2 Mar 23, 2009
Thank goodness the high school remains open. There are no other neighborhood options as St. Agnes is not what it use to be. The IB program is a smart decision and I wish all the best to the Bulldogs of Rice Street.
The Last Word

Schaumburg, IL

#3 Mar 23, 2009
Can't they get state funding like the islamic school?
A Mom

Saint Paul, MN

#6 Mar 23, 2009
This saddens me. Another fine institution gone.
Saint Bernards Parent

Saint Paul, MN

#7 Mar 23, 2009
The Star Tribune and Archdiocese website both state the in addition to the grade school teachers only 1 administrative position will be lost. It seems a little odd considering the grade school enrollment is more that half of the high school enrollment. The administration is way too big for that little school the way it is. It just goes to show that nothing will change if Father Mike and Jennifer Cassidy are allowed to remain.
How many Saint Bernard's administrators does it take to screw in a light bulb up there?
SBH Grad

Saint Paul, MN

#8 Mar 23, 2009
Former SB Grade School wrote:
<quoted text>
Can you provide a little more info on what you mean by ""out of control" and that they were "warned many times over the years"? Thanks.
A few examples would be the excessive number of administrators and staff and their outrageous salaries; the continuous hiring and creation of positions as other companies have had to cut back in these hard economic times, and the scholarships which go to the basketball players Jennifer Cassidy's husband recruits for his team. Since Father Mike came, several people have gone to the Archdiocese with problems, all to no avail.
annoyed reader

AOL

#10 Mar 23, 2009
This is a very sad day for the North End... and the loss of an institution the kids who attend really, really care about. All due to incompetence and greed, greed, greed.
Why doesn't the Pioneer Press investigate the bad management of this school? It would be a GREAT story!
Saddened

Saint Paul, MN

#11 Mar 23, 2009
It's really ashame to think about all the generous, kind-hearted donors Saint Bernard's sought out over the years, only to bleed them dry with their never-ending requests to bail them out. The real reason the school is closing is because they've run out of donors; they've all become wise to the financial mismanagement there.
I'm glad the University of St. Thomas has decided to step in, but I hope they go in with their eyes WIDE open. Take my advice and request that Father Mike and Jennifer step down, I'd hate to see St. Thomas be used like all the others.
parish member

Saint Paul, MN

#12 Mar 23, 2009
Over the years there have been many St. Bernard's employees who have tried to speak up about the mismanagement going on there. The people who have done so have been fired or forced out. The administration that remained were either a part of the problem or to afraid to say anything for fear of retaliation.
I am sick about the school's closing.Especially when I think of the trust generous donors placed in these greedy people.
What they have done will affect the community and its families for generation.
Former Employee

Saint Paul, MN

#13 Mar 23, 2009
annoyed reader wrote:
This is a very sad day for the North End... and the loss of an institution the kids who attend really, really care about. All due to incompetence and greed, greed, greed.
Why doesn't the Pioneer Press investigate the bad management of this school? It would be a GREAT story!
It sure would reveal a lot! They'd have their work cut out for them though, they have to hide all the inappropriate expenditures or not document it. Why do you think they first claimed the money that had been embezzeled was around $200,000. They really had no idea what money was where! Then it turns out to be about $30,000; that's quite a big difference especially if you want to dispute the fact they don't mismanage money. Anyone who investigates should get a hold of the Saint Bernard's credit card statements.
Amused

Saint Paul, MN

#14 Mar 23, 2009
Former Employee wrote:
<quoted text>
Anyone who investigates should get a hold of the Saint Bernard's credit card statements.
And what might we see on these credit card statements? How long have you been a "former" employee? Maybe they have changed their spending habits in light of their financial situation and the economy since you left.
Me myself

Waterville, MN

#15 Mar 23, 2009
SBH Grad wrote:
<quoted text>
A few examples would be the excessive number of administrators and staff and their outrageous salaries; the continuous hiring and creation of positions as other companies have had to cut back in these hard economic times, and the scholarships which go to the basketball players Jennifer Cassidy's husband recruits for his team. Since Father Mike came, several people have gone to the Archdiocese with problems, all to no avail.
K-8 140 students
9-12 250 students
Too Bad

Burnsville, MN

#16 Mar 23, 2009
Maybe some of these kids can go to St. Agnes
WOW

United States

#18 Mar 23, 2009
WOW, How Christian of you to pass judgment... My thoughts and prayers go out to the families, community, and staff affected by the closing of a school that has served so many.
Bulldog

Mankato, MN

#19 Mar 23, 2009
It is a dark sad day on the North End of St. Paul.
John O'Neil & Mrs Franzen are turning over in their graves. What a disgrace 137 students in the grade school and 222 in the high school. The high school and church will be the next to close. Everything will shift to arch rival St. Agnes. The Archdiocese are sick of the red ink. The bottom line is this Catholic Community is a business, but has not been run like one. Nice job Father Mike.
Bulldog

Mankato, MN

#20 Mar 23, 2009
Too Bad wrote:
Maybe some of these kids can go to St. Agnes
Maybe???? You can bet your Bulldog milk chips,that along with the high school and what is left of the declining parish.
Sad

Saint Paul, MN

#21 Mar 23, 2009
Another Saint Paul casulty.
parish member

Saint Paul, MN

#22 Mar 24, 2009
Amused wrote:
<quoted text>
And what might we see on these credit card statements? How long have you been a "former" employee? Maybe they have changed their spending habits in light of their financial situation and the economy since you left.
What might we see? It is time to remove your rose-colored glasses.
Individuals who are self-serving and misuse funds don't "change their spending habits," they just create new ways to rationalize their deceit.
parish member

Saint Paul, MN

#23 Mar 24, 2009
SBH Grad wrote:
<quoted text>
A few examples would be the excessive number of administrators and staff and their outrageous salaries; the continuous hiring and creation of positions as other companies have had to cut back in these hard economic times, and the scholarships which go to the basketball players Jennifer Cassidy's husband recruits for his team. Since Father Mike came, several people have gone to the Archdiocese with problems, all to no avail.
You failed to mention the ourageous nepitism that has occured for years. Recently, it has become comical. Between the pastor, the president and the rest of the administration, they could have a family reunion at the staff meetings. Why don't we call it "the sisterhood!"
parish member

Saint Paul, MN

#24 Mar 24, 2009
WOW wrote:
WOW, How Christian of you to pass judgment... My thoughts and prayers go out to the families, community, and staff affected by the closing of a school that has served so many.
Judgement and accountability are not the same. I am sure the "Christians" who are responsible for this mess will be keeping the families, community,staff,and students in their prayers.
30 year Rice Streeter

Saint Paul, MN

#25 Mar 24, 2009
I am also sadden by the closing of St Bernards. I have lived in the North End community for about 30 years and have family connections that go back about 100 years. Father Mike and Ms Cassidy should be sicken by there mismanagement over the years. Another person I know is sick is the kind individual that bailed them out to the tune of 500K a few years back. That same person also assited St Agnes and they are doing fine. I think the difference is that St Agnes was grateful and humbled by the donation where as far as I can tell St Bernards never was. Even thou I could not afford to send my children to St Bernards I have always support them any way I could. Now I am sicken by this news. Someone should ask for a full accounting of this parish and they should answer to the people that support them.

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