5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 19
Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart will take a close look at the 23-acre Barat parcel for its possible uses following Thursday's announcement of the anonymous donation to the Lake Forest school.
In a press release from Woodlands e-mailed late Friday afternoon, the school indicated it will "undertake a thorough process to identify the best use of the property in keeping with Woodlands' academic mission and taking into consideration the interests of the various constituencies within Woodlands Academy and the surrounding communities."
The gift makes for one 40-acre campus on which to develop programs and expand the mission of Sacred Heart in Lake Forest, according to the release.
“This most generous gift is a profound affirmation of our mission as expressed in the Sacred Heart Goals and Criteria and our determination to be faithful to our heritage, while always looking forward to ways we will continue to respond to the needs of the world in which we live and serve,” said Gerald Grossman, head of school at Woodlands Academy.
When an anonymous donor decided to purchase the former Barat College campus and donate it to Woodlands Academy as reported Thursday on Lake Forest-Lake Bluff Patch, the question of what would happen to the prime 32-acre parcel at the corner of Westleigh and Sheridan roads was answered.
Lake Forest City Manager Bob Kiely said Friday that he was surprised by the announcement. He is pleased the property will remain part of the city’s educational mix.
“It is a very interesting and exciting development,” Kiely said. “We think this is a great opportunity to reunite the parcels and continue to have the property used for educational purposes.”
Kiely is waiting to learn more from appropriate officials.
“I’m sure we’ll be meeting with representatives (of Woodlands) over the next few weeks and will have more to report at the next city council meeting,” he said.