NEW YORK (AP) Ten Catholic high schools in New York City and Westchester will become independently operating schools run by local boards of directors.

Archdiocese spokesman Joseph Zwilling says this is being done to preserve Catholic secondary education. He says the move will allow the schools to support themselves.

But a leader of the union that represents teachers at the 10 schools says the archdiocese is trying to break the union by making labor issues a school-by-school matter.

The schools affected include two of New York's best-known Catholic high schools, Cardinal Hayes and Cardinal Spellman in the Bronx.

Letters explaining the move were sent to parents Friday.

Information from: The Journal News, http://www.thejournalnews.com

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.