IN THE BEGINNING … (links to newspaper clippings about the new school)
Gerard High School was a co-educational, Roman Catholic diocesan high school which opened in 1962 at 2252 North 44th Street in Phoenix, Arizona. It was named for Msgr. Edward Gerard, one of the first ordained priests in the territory of Arizona.
Founded at the height of the postwar baby boom, Gerard took it upon itself to prepare a generation of Catholic children, teaching them biology, U.S. history, and algebra, but also trying to instill in their hearts certain religious traditions and values, the same sense of purpose that inspired the Holy Ghost Fathers who taught there. Gerard’s mascot was the Redcoat, its colors were red and gray.
In 1983 it educated 603 students but by 1989 that number had declined to 257. On February 18, 1989, Bishop Thomas O’Brien mailed a letter to parents of students and alumni advising them he was closing the school due to declining enrollment effective June of that same year. In the letter O’Brien said stated:
“Despite continued efforts to promote the school and maintain its viability – these efforts have not been successful. The most obvious and serious reasons for the closure are a continuing decline in enrollment and higher costs for operation of the school.”
Upon its closure, the furniture was given as salvage to other Catholic Schools, the structure was demolished and the gymnasium was moved to St. Mary’s High school.
A board honoring Gerard’s athletic history is installed in the lobby of the gymnasium at Seton Catholic Preparatory High School and other Gerard memorabilia is on display at Bourgade Catholic High School.
Articles Related To The School Closing Can Be Found Under The “Last Call” Tab.