Wednesday, June 14, 2000

School ready to expand

Purcell Marian could recruit more

By Jim Hannah
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Hoping to ride the national wave of increasing enrollment at private schools, Purcell Marian High School is breaking ground this summer on a $5 million expansion at its East Walnut Hills campus.

        “We have been turning down students for certain programs over the past few years,” said Jan Kennedy Rich, principal of the 715-student Catholic high school. “In part, this expansion will allow us to recruit more students.”

        In the past decade, enrollment in private schools is up nearly 17 percent across the country and queries about admission have climbed 28 percent, according to the National Association for Independent Schools.

        Last year, St. Xavier built a $13 million addition, and Seven Hills is putting up an arts center on its Red Bank campus.

        Purcell Marian spokeswoman Dianne Fisk said the school was able to expand after conducting the most successful fund-raising drive in its history. The campaign raised $7.45 million from alumni, foundations and friends of the school.

        Called the “Connector Building,” the addition will be built between the Eveslage Athletic Center and the existing high school.

        The new building will include an additional gym, performing arts rehearsal space, a chapel, classrooms and a new multimedia center.

        The media center will include class space, computer terminals for private study, and space for small-group interactive learning via video-conferencing.

        A new entrance will be added to the Eveslage Athletic Center, which will contain new concession areas and restrooms, separate from that of the school. That will allow for more meetings, lectures, performances and dinners to be held in the athletic center.

        Purcell High School was founded in 1927 on the Hackberry Avenue site.


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