A school in East County that has been around for nearly 50 years is asking for the public's help to keep its doors open.
The ironically named Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Lakeside is in a time of need, according to school officials. The small Catholic private school has been hit hard by the failing economy. Enrollment is down, and so is funding. There are currently 165 students enrolled in the K-8 program, but not as many next year. Officials said the school has two weeks to raise $190,000 or it may be forced to close at the end of the school year.
Parents and students are devastated they may have to find a new place to learn. Many students have siblings who graduated from the program, while Others have brothers and sisters who hope to enroll in the future.
"This school is like my second home, so it's hard to imagine it may not exist come next year," said Student Council President Emma Horner.
Parents are rallying to help raise the money.
"We're doing it by pounding the pavement, calling, sending out massive e-mails," PTA President Laurie Mikolaycik said.
The school plans to host a fundraising car wash this coming Saturday from 9 a.m. till 2 p.m. at the 9825 Pino Drive.
School Principal Colleen Mauricio said she's hopeful the school will survive these tough economic times so its tradition of excellence can continue.
"Nobody wants it to close," Mauricio said. "We've been here 47 years, and we want it to be here for a while."