Wheeling’s Mount De Chantal to close

A Catholic girls boarding school in Wheeling is closing after 160 years. Officials with the Mount De Chantal Visitation Academy announced Friday that the school will close on May 31st.

Sister JoAnne Gonter says it’s been a financial struggle to run Mount De Chantal the last few years.

“The decision to close was made by the sisters here at Mount De Chantal, after extensive study of a situation that for some time has been challenged by two things: Declining student enrollment, and escalating operational costs,” Gonter said. “For November, which was a mild month, our heating bill was $11,000. I learned yesterday the December bill was $16,000. So it gives you an idea, because of the expanse of this place.”

About 50 faculty and staff will lose their jobs at the end of the school year.

Eight nuns will continue to live on the property. They are forming a committee to discuss future use of the school’s buildings.Mount De Chantal’s Main building is listed on the National Register for Historic places.

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