ROSEVILLE (CBS13) – A Roseville private elementary school’s enrollment is down, it is running out of money. and can’t afford to build a new school. It’s a ripple effect from when the economy tanked in 2008.
St. John’s Elementary School is like any other enterprise: big dreams, big hopes until the big bust.
Rev. Cliff Haggenjos and his staff were so close to filling an empty field with buildings, eager students and jobs.
It sits behind Roseville’s St. John’s Episcopal Church at 2351 Pleasant Grove Blvd. Before moving to that location, the church already had a prospering school somewhere else in Roseville. They’d been there for 30 years.
But when the market got hot they sold that property and moved their church to its current spot.
It also would have been the future home of St. John’s Elementary School, and then the 2008 economic bust hit. The banks put a tight grip on their money, and their dreams started to fade.
They need $6 million to build. They don’t have it.
“This dream was beginning to get harder and harder to fulfill,” Haggenjos said.
In the interim they’ve been renting Barbara Childton Middle School. It too was hit hard in 2008. When the housing market crashed, the city didn’t have enough students to fill Childton. But now the school district wants its building back.
“We just simply don’t have a place to go, and so we’re going to have to close,” Haggenjos said.
They have to close because of dwindling enrollment.
“Sadness, disappointment,” parent Shawna Robles said.
“We’re going to miss the teachers and the staff,” said another parent, Linda Smith. “They’re all so wonderful.”
Right now there are only about 200 K-8 kids at St. John’s. They need at least 400 to survive economically, and with the school’s uncertainty, some parents are reluctantly pulling their kids out.
“To find a school equally as good as St. John’s is really, really difficult,” Smith said.
Haggenjos said losing the kids will be the hardest part.
“To simply know we’re not going to be a presence in their lives on a daily basis is tough,” Haggenjos said.
Barring some financial miracle, the reverend tells CBS13 that they do not have any plans to build another school in the near future. They just want to get through this economic storm.