Parents Deal with Holy Angels Academy Closing

May 1, 2013 Updated May 1, 2013 at 10:30 PM EDT

By Rachel Elzufon

May 1, 2013 Updated May 1, 2013 at 10:30 PM EDT

Buffalo, NY (WKBW) - Local schools are on a high spirited mission to lift the heavy hearts of students attending Holy Angels Academy.

It has been more than a day since the heart-wrenching news that Holy Angels Academy is shutting down.

Two major campaigns have fired up -- one to try and save the school and another to help find a new educational home for the 250 girls who attend Holy Angels Academy.

"There's a big heart in this school that I think a lot of other schools don't have," says Larry Cardinali, a parent of a junior girl.

Generations of families have been going to Holy Angels Academy.

Parents say that their daughters are devastated, barely even able to focus on homework. Parents are worried about the young girls -- especially with AP exams and SAT's right around the corner.

Guidance counselors will be at the school to help the students cope.

Brenda Breckner says her daughter has been very upset. "She was just nominated Vice President of Student Council," Breckner explains. "She was looking forward to her senior year and is very disappointed."

Parents of 11th graders met with school officials Wednesday evening to see what can be done to help the transition of students.

Brenda Breckner says her daughter is so distraught that she originally felt that she didn't want to continue next year in school. She asked if she could go for her GED or be home-schooled.

Some parents questioned: can the school phase the girls out over the next few years? Others wondered, could they save the school if enough money is raised?

School officials say they have to look at all of that, but the money and enrollment numbers are just not there. They describe it as a domino effect, with the last falling when an international partnership recently fell through.

Trustee Member Maureen Maguire says, "It was a number of factors that came together in a perform storm. Until very recently, we were planning on moving ahead next year and had great plans."

Some parents expressed frustration at how they found out the school was closing. Parents received the news via e-mail at the same time school officials explained the situation to the students.

"I'm livid because I feel like they should have given us some type of a warning," Breckner says.

However, Maguire says there was no right solution in this case. She stressed she did not want students finding out on Facebook or Twitter.

Other sister and independent schools are now trying to step up and help girls find a new place to learn. Some are even hosting shadow days for the students and meeting with parents.

Students are not giving up without a fight.

After school, lacrosse players were chanting, "we won't close, we won't close!"

Students are also trying to attract attention from national celebrities, including Oprah and Ellen.

They are also trying to round up support on social media, even creating the hashtag #SAVEHAA on Twitter.