MANILA, Philippines — The Colegio de San Lorenzo in Quezon City officially announced its permanent closure on Monday, the same day it was supposed to start classes for the school year 2022-23, drawing outrage from students and parents.
“Due to the financial instability and lack of financial viability brought about by the ongoing pandemic and exacerbated by consistent low enrollment turnout over the past years, the Board of Trustees has come to the painful and difficult decision to permanently close our educational institution, Colegio De San Lorenzo,” the school management said in the letter sent to students and their parents.
Students have already enrolled and paid for their tuition and other expenses, including uniforms and books.
The school management assured them that they would be refunded in full.
It also promised students that it would help them transfer to other schools — “by timely releasing their records and credentials for such purpose.”
The management said it would coordinate with institutions “of the same caliber” where college students could transfer.
After the announcement of the school’s closure, parents and students staged a general assembly at the high school gym.
They vented their frustration over the sudden closure, which they said would give them a hard time, especially the graduating students.
“Then there was the announcement. On Thursday, on Friday they let them enroll. Then suddenly it stopped. What’s this?” a mother, speaking in Filipino, said during the assembly. “Hey, only a few students enrolled. Let’s close the school. Just like that?”
Parents and students then directed their anger on the president of the school, Mary Claire Therese Balgan, for not showing up during the assembly.
They demanded that the school immediately release all the transfer requirements and refunds to allow the students to seek other schools as soon as possible.