Monday, January 16, 2012

Appeal submitted to move Nativity BVM to Wallingford

When I read that the Arch Dioceses spared Nativity BVM from closure, I thought the news was not only great, but lasting.  However, having spoken to a group last week I was concerned to hear that this might not be over just yet.

The original decision by the AD was for Nativity to remain open while St. John Chrysostom in Wallingford closed and merged with the school here.  During my discussion I was told there would be an appeal by St. John's to have the transition reversed with Nativity shutting down and going to Wallingford. 

Yesterday the delcotimes reported that this is indeed the case and a appeal has been formally  presented by St. John Chrysostom.  What transpires between now and mid-February is unclear, but it'll have to happen soon as the AD is expected to give a final ruling by mid-February.  Transitional plans, regardless of the location, are to be set by mid-March.
I have yet to find out what community involvement has taken place on these discussions, but it's something Media Borough should be aware of.  Based on what's been reported, I don't necessarily agree with St. John's position that their location is is the most preferable. In fact, one of the theories presented is that Nativity would have an easier time selling their assets (builiding), than St. John's would, and therefore making it a more logical choice to move out of Media.  To me, there's a lot more to this discussion than just sale of assets.  This is about a community and a well liked school will a very long history in this borough. 

As a resident, I'd like to see more information on this, as closing Nativity would create a potentially big issue for the school, community and residents in the south. Whether Nativity would remain vacant or somehow be developed for corporate use are two very big issues borough council would have to deal with. It's also a possibility the school could be knocked down to allow for housing development.  These are all real scenarios.

Nativity has been part of the Media fabric for the last 100 years and this is not something that should be decided quietly.  Nor should Media's elected officials stand on the sidelines and wait for a decision, when they can actively participate in a possible outcome.   I, for one, support Media Nativity remaining in Media and will do what I can help.  It would be a shame to loose a school like this under an appeal of these circumstances.  

I'd be interested in hearing from the community.

Update: 1/26/12 - Though not scientific, here is the poll conducted on this site related to this article.



  1. How is St. John's more desireable. It sits right on the border of the crime infested city of Chester? How on earth could that be a more desirable place than where Nativity is right now? It is a part of the fabric of Media and should remain in this town!

  2. Brendan O'RiordanJanuary 16, 2012 at 8:14 PM

    I would love to see Nativity stay in the Borough. It's one of the few Catholic grade schools remaining which kids can actually walk to/from. It's a big part of the fabric of the neighborhood.

    Sadly though if the decision comes down to dollars for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, it is most likely true that the parcel of land upon which Nativity's school resides would fetch quite a hefty sum. More than likely the school building would be sold to a real estate developer, knocked down, and replaced by either condos or a combination of twin/single homes.

    That parcel would go from tax exempt ownership to taxable ownership with sale to a non-religious entity. So I am not sure if the borough government would want to see Nativity remain in town.

  3. I think it is important to point out that the BRC is closing both schools no matter what the location. The name will be changed as wi uniforms, etc. In fact the teachers & principals will also be mixed up. So no matter which school is "chosen" to hold the new regional school, things will absolutely change. Also, there are acres of land that could easily be subdivided & sold. Worth more than Nativity, perhaps not, but more easily sold, probably.

  4. i like the idea of my children going to school in mediathat would be a longer bus ride from chester to wallingford