St. Ann’s Academy in Kamloops has the distinction of being the longest, continually operating school in British Columbia. 2015 marked the 135th anniversary of the school. From the time St. Ann’s Academy was established in 1880 until 1978, the school was administered by the Sisters of St. Ann (the Annies). The congregation of Christian Brothers administered the school, after the departure of the Sisters of St. Ann, until 2002. Today, the school, which was called “St. Ann’s on the hill” in the early days of the century, provides ‘excellence in Catholic education’ to students in grades K-12. The school is administered and staffed by lay people.
The city of Kamloops also has a K-7 Catholic school on its north shore. Our Lady of Perpetual Help was established by Bishop Michael Harrington and administered by the Sisters of St. Martha in 1962. This elementary school serves as a feeder school to St. Ann’s Academy High School. In 1998, the Sisters of St. Martha left the community of Our Lady of Perpetual Help and from that time the school has been administered and staffed by lay people.
St. James School in Vernon was founded in 1957 by Monsignor Miles and Bishop Michael Harrington. The Sisters of St. Ann were seconded to administer the school in its early days. Today, the K-7 school is administered and staffed by lay people.
Two smaller communities in the Diocese of Kamloops have elementary schools that serve smaller parishes. St. Ann’s in Quesnel was established in 1986 and Sacred Heart School in Williams Lake was founded in 1992. Both of these schools were founded under the leadership of Bishop Lawrence Sabatini.
The Kamloops Diocese opened the first Distributed Learning (DL) Catholic school in British Columbia in September 2011. ASCEND Online opened with programming for students from Kindergarten to grade 12.
The schools in the Kamloops Diocese all have a common mission: to provide excellence in education in an environment that is enriched by our Catholic traditions and Gospel values. We continue to give recognition to all stakeholders who have contributed to the prosperous history of our Catholic schools.