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Boston Catholic schools preschool enrollment surge

November 30, 2010

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BOSTON—Catholic schools in the Boston area that for decades have been struggling with declining student populations are suddenly seeing a surge in the number of preschoolers enrolled.

Enrollment in Catholic preschool classes this year is up nearly 14 percent over last year and 22 percent over five years ago. Many parochial schools are adding new classes for 3- and 4-year-olds, and some new Catholic preschools have opened in response to demand.

Russ Wilson, regional director of Pope John Paul II Catholic Academy in Boston, tells The Boston Globe that the programs are attracting parents of all faiths looking for a more affordable alternative to day care.

Church education officials say the challenge now is to keep those preschoolers in Catholic schools as they grow older.

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Information from: The Boston Globe, http://www.boston.com/globe