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South Neighborhoods
Homestead council approves Boyle Center as school for troubled youths

Wednesday, April 24, 2002

By Jim Hosek, Tri-State Sports & News Service

Homestead council decided Thursday to approve Pauline Auberle Foundation plans to convert Bishop Boyle Center into an alternative school for troubled youths.

The decision came despite a last-minute plea by Mayor Betty Esper for council to try to acquire the building on East Ninth Avenue for a community center.

The vote was 4-1, with Councilwoman Joan DeSimone dissenting. She agreed with Esper that the borough's image would not be bolstered by the school, which hopes to open in September with 120 students.

Voting in favor were President Evan Baker, Bill Batts, Dorothy Kelly and Joe Phillips. Absent were Marvin Brown, Cheryl Chapman, Gary Graham and Don Purifoy.

A disappointed Esper walked out of the meeting after the vote.

Before the vote, foundation Chairman John Lydon responded to a claim two weeks ago that the Auberle Education Center is a behavioral treatment center and not a school. He said the center has a state license as an elementary and secondary school.

He also said a back alley would be used rather than East Ninth Avenue as a drop-off and pick-up point for students in response to fears the latter could disrupt a favorite police, fire and paramedic emergency route.

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