Catholic Education has held a place of pride in the community of Perth for 196 years! In 1817, the first priest in Perth, Father Abbe Pierre de la Mothe, began a small school and the following year, an elementary school with one teacher and four students was established. By the 1850s, the school consisted of two rooms and about seventy students.
With ever-growing numbers, a new school was built in 1890 and in December of 1892, the Sisters of Providence arrived to begin more than a century of service to the parish as teachers.
A larger and more modern building was built in 1926 and in 1950 and 1951 respectively, Grades 9 and 10 were housed on the third floor. Three additions were made to the original 1926 building to accommodate increasing numbers of students and new program requirements in 1954, 1958, and 1969.
In 1977 Sister Loretta, Principal at the time, asked to be relieved of her duties, due to poor health. Former CDSBEO Director of Education Greg McNally, became the first principal since 1892 who was not a Sister of Providence.
In 1989, because of the growing number of students, the school officially split into an elementary and a secondary school with John McKenty as Principal of the secondary school and Brian Peters as Principal of the elementary school.
In 1991, the provincial government granted the Lanark, Leeds and Grenville Roman Catholic School Board money to build a new secondary school and Saint John Catholic High School opened in 1992.
September 2010 marked another momentous event in the history of St. John’s when Grades 7 and 8 moved from the elementary school to the high school, as is the model in most of the CDSBEO secondary schools.
St. John’s is a living example of almost two centuries of education spirited by the teachings of Jesus Christ. The school stands as a tribute to the sacrifices and commitment of so many parishioners, past and present, and as a living sign of an enduring faith.
Our Mission statement reads:
Founded in the light of Catholic tradition and in partnership with the Church and Family, St. John’s Elementary School is committed to excellence in education and the full realization of each student’s potential, by teaching and living Christ’s Gospel message of Love.
St. John’s Elementary currently offers Full day Kindergarten to Grade 6. We offer both French Immersion and Core French programs. Working closely with our families and our parish priest, Father Brian McNally, St. John’s continues to be an important part of the Perth community.