St. Joseph Catholic School

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St. Joseph Catholic School
SJCS Crest.png
600 South Coulter Drive
Bryan, Texas, (Brazos County), 77803
United States
Coordinates 30°39′49″N 96°21′52″W / 30.66361°N 96.36444°W / 30.66361; -96.36444Coordinates: 30°39′49″N 96°21′52″W / 30.66361°N 96.36444°W / 30.66361; -96.36444
School type Private, Co-educational Parochial
Religious affiliation(s) Roman Catholic
Established 1894
Founder Fr. Joseph Pelnar
School district Three
Principal Elementary Campus, Mrs. Kristy Barfknecht, Secondary Campus, Miss Jennifer Pelletier
Chaplain Rev. Msgr. John McCaffrey
Grades PK12
Average class size 12–20
Classes offered Core Curriculum, College Prep, Latin, Spanish, Dual Credit English & History
Color(s)                Purple, Gold, & White
Slogan Educating the mind, body and spirit since 1894.
Athletics conference TAPPS 3A
Mascot The Eagle
Team name Eagles
Accreditation Texas Catholic Conference Education Department(TCCED) and Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)
Affiliation Parochial, St. Joseph Catholic Church
Admissions/Registrar Margaret Teitjen
Development Director Charlie Ballew
Advancement Director Pam Coleman
Athletic Director Blake Evans

The St. Joseph Catholic School System is a parochial school located in Bryan, Texas. It was established by Father Joseph Pelnar in 1894. Grading curriculum ranges from Pre-K to 12th grade.


St. Joseph School was originally founded by Father Joseph Pelnar in 1894. The first academy was originally located in Galveston but was later moved to Bryan after the hurricane of 1900, and the Ursuline Sisters were placed in charge of the school. The Villa Maria Convent was built on St. Ursula's Hill, a mile northeast of St. Joseph Catholic Church. In 1926, the Villa Maria Academy was closed after 25 years in Bryan, and the Sisters of the Incarnate Word of Houston succeeded the Ursuline Sisters as teachers at St. Joseph's Parochial School. Because of growth in the parish, additional classrooms were required. The new building —still a present structure operating as the St. Joseph Catholic School Eagle's Nest– was constructed at the intersection of East 26th Street and Preston in Byran. This new building was dedicated in 1960.[1] In the early 1990s, St. Joseph Catholic School purchased what is now the Elementary Campus from Bryan ISD.

In 2001, St. Joseph purchased the property on Coulter Street in Bryan of Central Baptist Church to make room for a growing population of students. Central Baptist in turn constructed a new sanctuary at 1991 FM 158, the farm-to-market road which leads to Huntsville. In 2000, what is now the Holy Family Retreat Center was given to St. Joseph Church in the last will and testament of Dorothy Alice Holler.[2]

Eagle's Nest[edit]

The Eagle’s Nest serves as a Pre-K center for children from six weeks up to four years of age. There are two locations for the Eagles’ Nest: the Preston Campus (located next to St. Joseph Catholic Church), and the nursery wing of the Secondary Campus.[3]

Elementary campus[edit]

The elementary campus, for grades Pre-K through 6, is located between William Joel Bryan Parkway and Travis Street, about 200 yards west of St. Joseph Catholic Church and the Preston Eagle’s Nest Campus. St. Joseph School purchased the building from Bryan ISD in the 1990. It was originally built as a public elementary school, Travis Elementary, and has been continually in use for over 75 years. The building consists of two floors of classrooms, a gym, a cafeteria, and several reference rooms (including a library, a computer lab, and a religious education office). The Elementary Campus completed the addition of another wing and multi-purpose room in time for the 2010-2011 school year.[3]

Secondary campus[edit]

Christ the Good Shepherd Chapel of St. Joseph Catholic School is the former sanctuary of the large Central Baptist Church, relocated to 1991 FM 158 in northeastern Bryan.

The secondary campus, serving grades 7 through 12, was obtained in 2001, from Central Baptist Church. The former Central Baptist sanctuary was renamed Christ the Good Shepherd Chapel. This campus consists of two buildings: the main building and a multi-purpose gymnasium. The main building contains the chapel, a biology lab, chemistry lab, band hall, art room, computer lab, library, and 14 classrooms. To the north is the Middle School wing and Eagle’s Nest, and to the south is the High School wing. The second building contains a cafeteria, a gymnasium, offices, and classroom space.

High school program[edit]

The high school program was first established in 1994 on the main campus, before moving to the secondary campus in 2001.[4]


  1. ^ St. Joseph Catholic Church History
  2. ^ "Field of Dreams Pamphlet" describing history of Holy Family Retreat Center and the construction of the Football Field.
  3. ^ a b St. Joseph School Administration
  4. ^ HS. "About Secondary Campus". St. Joseph Catholic School website. Archived from the original on February 18, 2007. Retrieved May 11, 2007. 

External links[edit]