Archdiocese, nonprofit invest more than $90M in 30 schools

The Archdiocese of Chicago and a nonprofit will together invest more than $90 million over 10 years in 30 Catholic schools in lower-income neighborhoods on the city’s South and West sides, officials announced Wednesday.

Under the agreement, Big Shoulders Fund will donate $47.5 million to the schools serving 5,600 students and assume their financial risk while the archdiocese will provide $44.9 million, they said. The deal also will let the archdiocese stabilize its annual operating aid for Catholic schools.

“Big Shoulders Fund will significantly increase its historic funding level helping these schools to remain strong anchors in communities where there is a need for quality educational options,” the announcement said.

The agreement takes effect immediately and will support the 2019/2020 school-year budget, it said.

Big Shoulders Fund has provided nearly $400 million in scholarship funds and additional support to 75 Chicago-area schools over more than 30 years and has extended programming to 20 schools in Northwest Indiana.