Claremont Prep Is Sold to For-Profit Firm according to Jenny Anderson’s breaking story today in the New York Times.

In a press release I received this afternoon, Claremont Prep writes:

The Meritas Family of Schools today announced that Claremont Preparatory School in lower Manhattan has joined their college-preparatory family of schools, becoming the 10th school in a network of over 11,500 students around the globe, including schools in Europe, Asia, Latin America and North America. As Meritas’ U.S. flagship, Claremont students will enjoy a close partnership with internationally-renowned Collège du Léman, located in Geneva, Switzerland, as well as Léman International School in China.

As a part of Meritas, New York parents no longer need to wait for a globally-focused education for their children. They will enjoy it immediately. Meritas students and teachers have access to unmatched international learning and leadership opportunities such as the International Student Government Summit and Meritas “Touchpoints,” which promote cultural literacy and language fluency.

Obviously influenced by Avenues, which touts its future international school network and college prep, Claremont is now trying to compete directly, offering the same benefits now.

Just a few years ago, it was Claremont that was the new school with the bright shiny facility and the well-compensated teachers recruited from prestigious established private schools.  Now, Claremont is struggling, sold to new owners motivated first and foremost by profit, with a new mandate.  Families already at the school have limited options.

It will be interesting to see five years from now where Avenues is.  The parallels with Claremont are obvious, and for clear reasons, most families would prefer the safer, more stable route that an established private school provides.  Avenues could be successful, or it could be rocked by transition like Claremont.

In Avenue’s (and possibly Claremont’s) favor, Manhattan’s kindergarten-aged population is growing dramatically, with private school applicants growing by 10% this year and waiting lists at many of the better Manhattan and Brooklyn public school kindergartens.  For families to stay in Manhattan, kids have to go somewhere.