HomeNewsFarewell to Holmesburg Christian Academy

Farewell to Holmesburg Christian Academy

Holmesburg Christian Academy – formerly Holmesburg Baptist Christian School – has been educating children for 49 years.

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Sadly, though, the school will not make it to 50.

Beset with financial woes, the school will close in June.

Enrollment has declined to 104. In addition to tuition payments, the school received scholarship money.

“It’s not enough,” said Connie Vasquez-Matos, the Head of School.

Holmesburg Baptist Christian School opened in 1975 as a nursery school before expanding to elementary school years.

Vasquez-Matos said enrollment was a healthy 271 seven or eight years ago. She blamed declining enrollment on the changing neighborhood and the economy.

Vasquez-Matos has been Head of School for five years, with 19 years overall at the school, 7927 Frankford Ave.

“I was so looking forward to my 20,” she said.

Tuition is $6,400 for kindergarten through sixth grade and $6,900 for seventh and eighth grade.

The low enrollment has forced fourth- and fifth-graders to be in class together. Sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders are in a classroom together.

Holmesburg Baptist Church, located in the same aging building, operates the school and is not in a financial position to save the school.

Vasquez-Matos will miss the children and their parents.

“We have amazing families,” she said.

The Rev. Darren Umble is a former School District of Philadelphia teacher who serves as chairman of the Holmesburg Christian Academy board. He said it takes a certain dedication to teach at a small private school where the pay is lower than at public schools. 

“The teachers are so committed,” he said.

Holmesburg Christian Academy will hold its sports banquet on May 17, with Spirit Day set for June 3. Seven eighth-graders will graduate on June 4, with the last day of school for everyone else on June 7. A staff luncheon that day will be the final farewell.

There is one silver lining.

“There are so many great memories,” Umble said.

Most of the displaced students will be going to either Cedar Grove Christian Academy or Calvary Christian.

The school is accepting donations to pay its bills. Go to https://holmesburgchristian.org/ and click “Donate Now” on the top right. ••

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