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Can Queen of Angels Academy be saved?

DORVAL – When Jennifer Frezza was a student at Queen of Angels Academy, she learned to question dogma and fight for what she believed in. Now an adult, she says those lessons led her to take on one of her biggest challenges – trying to keep the doors of Queen of Angels Academy from closing for good.

“We have to try,” she said. “We’re taught to fight, we’re taught to question, we’re taught to look at all angles.”

But by her own admission her efforts are a longshot. The English girls’ school has run at an undisclosed deficit for a while, and has suffered declining enrollment in the face of stricter language laws. Nonetheless, Frezza has organized a Facebook effort to keep her alma mater open, and she has a built-in advantage: she’s president of the school’s fundraising organization.

“We’re trying to make people aware that maybe all possible solutions haven’t been looked at,” she said.

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Yet as far as the school’s board of directors is concerned, the school will finish operations on June 30.

“We’re really focused on making sure the kids this year have a great year and an orderly wind down of the school,” said Dominic Varvaro, the president of the school’s board of directors.

Frezza said she’s hoping for a benefactor, or perhaps a merger with another similar institution. Even she has taken the pragmatic step of enrolling her own daughter in another school for next year, just as she hopes to send her back to Queen of Angels in the fall.

The school boasted an enrollment of 515 students in 2006. Now that figure is lower than 200.

“It’s always a question of enrollment. When the enrollment’s not there, when the market’s not there, are we doing the right thing keeping the school open?” Varvaro said.

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