New $500,000 Gift Pledged to Queen of Peace High School

First, Queen of Peace High School met the challenge of raising a million dollars in order to remain open.

Now, an anonymous family has stepped forward to give the school an additional half million dollars to support strategic planning, accelerate fundraising, and propel marketing at the school.

The $500,000 gift, made to the Archdiocese of Newark, will be used exclusively for the effort underway to sustain Queen of Peace High School, according to terms of the gift.

“We’re kind of speechless,” said Queen of Peace Principal John Tonero. “This gift has the potential to secure and transform our future. All of us at Queen of Peace are deeply grateful.”

According to Rev. Mike Donovan, pastor of Queen of Peace parish, which operates the high school, the donor was introduced to the school by Archbishop John J. Myers. “There are so many ways the Archdiocese supported us over the past few months to help us stay open,” said Fr. Donovan. “But bringing this gift to our doors is above and beyond what we could have expected.” The donors, who wish to remain anonymous, are long-time benefactors of the Archdiocese of Newark and strong supporters of Catholic education across the country, said Fr. Donovan.

In meetings with high school officials, Fr. Donovan said the donors were inspired to make the gift when they learned about efforts to deal with the school’s financial and enrollment challenges. “They made it clear they want their gift to be used in a way that provides the best possible chance of sustaining Queen of Peace High School for the long-term,” he said.

The terms of the gift stipulate specific ways the funds must be used to support strategic planning and fundraising objectives. The terms also stipulate that part of the funds must be used to develop the Randy and Nancy Pearce Scholarship Program “to honor the visionary leadership, great commitment, and heroic efforts of the Pearce family in coming to the rescue of Queen of Peace High School, the school they love so dearly, at its time of great need.”

In a statement that accompanied the gift, the donors said, “We are particularly focused on the strategies and actions necessary to ensure that the great legacy of the past three-quarters of a century at Queen of Peace High School remains available to families and students for the next 100 years. Our gift will encourage additional fundraising through a matching grant component that targets every new dollar of monies raised by the school over the next two years.Funds will be used to improve the marketing and enrollment management of the school, to maintain the outstanding academic and athletic programs, and to enrich the school’s commitment to its Catholic identity.”

“Our students are ecstatic about being able to continue their high school careers at Queen of Peace,” said Tonero. “We are very encouraged with the number of student athletes who have reported for their pre-season physicals. You can feel the excitement for their upcoming seasons and the beginning of the academic year.”

Financial challenges aside, Queen of Peace High School boasts a proven track record in educating students for success in college. The graduation classes of 2015 and 2016 earned $27.5 million in scholarships to many prestigious colleges and universities, including Dartmouth University, Drew University, Manhattan College, St. John’s University, Villanova University, Rutgers University, Seton Hall University, University of Florida, Pennsylvania State University, Purdue University, New York University, Quinnipiac University, Syracuse University, The College of New Jersey, NJIT, Fordham University and many more.    

As a college preparatory school, Queen of Peace High School offers advanced placement courses in Biology, United States History II, Calculus A/B and Calculus B/C, as well as six-credit college courses in English IV, United States History I, United States History II and Spanish IV.

“We are anxious to get back into the surrounding communities and schools to share the many wonderful opportunities that students enjoy at Queen of Peace High School,” said Fr. Donovan. “Queen of Peace will be represented at all of the Archdiocesan Expo events and we have three Open Houses scheduled for the fall of 2016. School visitations will be ongoing throughout Bergen, Essex, Hudson and Passaic counties. Our ‘Griffin for a Day’ program will continue throughout the school year as well as providing transportation and lunch to sixth, seventh and eighth grade classes who choose to visit our school.”

For more information about how Queen of Peace High School can positively impact your child’s future, please contact Joe Torchia, Admissions Director, at 201-998-8227 x 232 or email him at or

We look forward to our Griffins soaring higher than they ever have.