Fight to appeal Notre Dame closure begins

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UPDATE: Wednesday, June 2, 2021 at 7:08 p.m.

Meeting organizers will meet on Thursday, June 3, at 6 p.m. at Clink to discuss an appeal to the closure of Notre Dame Catholic Schools.

UPDATE: Monday, May 31, 2021 at 1:15 p.m.

A meeting concerning an appeal to the closure of Notre Dame Catholic Schools has been canceled according to event organizers.

The meeting was originally scheduled for Monday, May 31 Monday, May 31 at 6 p.m. at Clink, and all those for and against the appeal were invited.

Meeting organizers said they will be rescheduling the meeting, likely on Thursday, June 3.

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — Three days after the Catholic Diocese of Forth Worth officially closed the doors to Notre Dame Catholic Schools, one woman is now fighting for answers.

“At this point if we don’t move forward, it just disappears and nothing happens,” Brenna Pohlod said.

Pohlod is not only a Notre Dame parent, she’s also an alum of the school.

“There’s still a lot of unanswered questions for a lot of people in the public,” Pohlod said. “You know you’re talking about 117 years of history, hundreds of families, there’s kids and teachers and so many people involved that have invested not just money, but time and talent and their hearts into the school.”

But from the viewpoint of the Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth, they went through all the steps.

Since 2018, church leaders say they tried searching for solutions to aging facilities, low enrollment, and the growing financial burden.

But after loans and continued struggles, the diocese felt like this was the right decision.

“Now it’s time to move to the next step, and that’s what the bishop has done, he’s asked the superintendent to form a committee and begin a strategic planning process where how do we continue catholic education in the northwest deanery of Wichita Falls,” Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth Communications Director Pat Svacina said on May 21st, the school’s last day.

For Pohlod, she feels the town halls and meetings were not widely publicized, even as an involved member of the parish.

She knows as some families try to heal and move on, the appeal may hinder that and for that, she apologizes.

“I’ve really had to do some praying and discernment to figure out what I’m doing is going to be more detrimental, or in the long run it’s going to help more, and I personally believe that it is still needed,” Pohlod said.

She just hopes to find the facts, so everyone has a clear image of how they got to where they are today.

“There’s only one truth, and finding that out and moving forward and even if closing the school was the only way to move forward,” Pohlod said. “The way that things communicated and the situations that brought us here over the years worth of the school being there, are issues that need to be addressed and fixed as well.”

All this as the dioceses will still look to provide some form of catholic education.

“We’re looking for high catholic education, what the future is, what’s the next step here and that’s in progress already so down the road we’ll have an answer to that,” Svacina said on May 21st.

And moving forward for the fight to save Notre Dame, there’s one thing that stands above all else.

“There are a lot of things on both sides of the appeal, and finding out those truths, is probably the most important part,” Pohlod said.

We reached back out to the diocese today for updated comment on the appeal, but did not hear back.

Pohlod will hold a meeting, next Monday, May 31st at 6 o’clock p.m. at Clink, inviting all those for and against the appeal.

Pohlod also has a Facebook page to follow along the appeal, the group name is, Always ND, Always True.

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