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DANIEL MURPHY SCHOOL SET TO CLOSE

Suzan Filipek
Edition: 5/30/2008


DANIEL MURPHY High School bell ring for the last time on June 6.

After 82 years of various religious education on the Third and Detroit streets site, the L.A. Catholic Archdiocese is poised to sell Daniel Murphy High School.The last day of school is at the end of student finals Fri., June 6.

The decision to close the boys’ school at 241 S. Detroit St. was made amid declining enrollment and the high cost of clergy abuse scandals, said Archdiocese spokesman Tom Tamberg. Future plans for the property have not been determined, he added.

Parents had fought the decision, after first hearing the news last year. But the Archdiocese would not bend, said parent Rod Freer. “It was like beating my head against the wall. There was no negotiation, nothing. No offer to hear our plans to save our school, including tuition increases.”

The school is one of up to 50 properties the Archdiocese is selling to fund sexual abuse settlements, said spokesman Tamberg.

When Murphy opened as St. John Vianney School in 1953 it had 502 boys.
Student enrollment has plummeted to 231 students.

Annual tuition of $5,101 was largely subsidized by the archdiocese, which is offering to help in the transition throughout the area, since many students commute to the campus.

Some have already enrolled at St. Bernard in Playa Del Rey and Cathedral High near Dodger Stadium. Other parents are considering Fairfax High or other public and private schools, though a non-religious private can cost more than twice as much, said Freer.

The 28-member faculty and administrative staff will also be assisted to relocate to other Catholic high schools, Tamberg said.