Trinity Hall, a newly established all girls high school in the Catholic tradition, announced Friday afternoon it will welcome its first freshman class in September 2013 at a temporary location in Middletown.
The site will be a low brick building on the Croydon Hall campus at 900 Leonardville Road in Leonardo, currently home to the Middletown Parks & Recreation Department. It is adjacent to the white iconic mansion on a rolling campus of athletic fields. Croydon Hall was once the home of a boys boarding school.
In an email to school supporters, Trinity Hall founders Mairead and Sean Clifford, and Victoria and Justin Gmelich, of Rumson, said Croydon Hall has the academic building they need with "a sufficient number of classrooms and offices; a full-sized gymnasium with a stage, fitness room and locker rooms; an all-purpose room for lunch and other activities; adequate parking; and various outdoor spaces including quality athletic fields."
But it's not likely going to be the permanent site.
"Trinity Hall is engaged with the owners of several local properties which we believe are fantastic sites for a permanent campus," the founders said. "The search for a permanent, centrally-located home for Trinity Hall will remain a priority."
A leadership team consisting of a Founding Head of School and Assistant Head of School is expected to be announced next month, the statement said.
Mayor Tony Fiore said the township is excited to welcome Trinity Hall to Croydon Hall. "We're happy they will start their history with us," he said.
Trinity Hall will pay Middletown Township $10,000 a month, or $120,000 a year, for use of the facility and fields during the school day, he said.
"It's just another example of how the township is trying to maximize every opportunity to find additional revenue sources, to offset property taxes," he said.
He said that that Croydon Hall is "in very good condition" but he expects that Trinity Hall would also be putting some capital into the structure during its "two-or-three year" lease agreement, leaving it even better than how they found it.
Fiore said the township will find another location for the Recreation, Health and other departments.
"On behalf of the Trinity Hall Board of Trustees, we would like to thank Middletown for their cooperation and support of Trinity Hall," said Mairead Clifford.
"They have been a pleasure to deal with and our heartfelt gratitude goes out to the mayor and township officials. We look forward to working with them."