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School Expansion

September 16, 2021
By Father Russell Kovash

Dear Parents,

I have now been at St. Joseph’s for just over nine years. From the first year I have arrived until now, I have had many parents consistently approach me about expanding our school. We have considered a fair amount of options over these years but for a variety of reasons, none of them have panned out. Perhaps the timing and circumstances weren’t just right. In light of thirty-four 1st graders registering for this school year and thus having to add a second 1st grade classroom, and with our school being up twenty-four students from last year, we will be facing in the very near future a crisis: insufficient classroom space. Foreseeing this likely problem, our parish has acquired over the last several years three separate lots connected to our current parish property, enabling us to more seriously consider expanding our school. At this time we are actively pursuing the construction of an Early Childhood Center on the lot directly south of Domino’s Pizza on Main Street.  

Because none of this can get off the ground without consulting and getting the approval from the City of Williston, several very good visits have already taken place with them regarding our desire for expansion. More meetings are scheduled to take place in the upcoming weeks. It is our hope to still break ground this year.   

Perhaps you are asking: Why is St. Joseph’s starting its expansion plans with an Early Childhood Center? Well, if this facility indeed comes to fruition by the fall of 2022 which we are hoping, it would allow us to move our two existing preschool classrooms into this new dedicated building. Two classrooms are then freed up for us to accommodate the additional second and third-grades in the subsequent years. This incremental expansion and planned growth is consistent with our vision to reinstate 7th and 8th grade back at our school in the near future.

These are exciting times for St. Joseph School. Despite the challenges of the past couple of years primarily stemming from COVID, things seem to be coming together very nicely. We have substantial growth in our school based on demand; we have a dedicated, professional, and highly qualified staff; and we now have space to build which is in immediate proximity to our current campus. I trust that if this is of the Holy Spirit, He will continue to guide and lead our plans. Please be assured that I will keep you posted of significant developments.

In Christ,  

Fr. Russell Kovash


Be Kind!

October 21, 2020
By Mrs. Julie Quamme

When we are kind to others, we also feel good about ourselves. Jesus reminds us to be kind, or do unto others as we would want others to treat us. In other words, “love your neighbor as yourself.” This is the golden rule that Jesus asks us to follow. 

I have listed 5 items that I ask the St. Joseph’s students to follow: 

Do Unto Others - Jesus said this on the Sermon on the Mount. Think about others and ask yourself how you might feel if someone treated you unkindly. Would you want someone to praise you or make fun of you for not doing something right? Think carefully before you speak. 

If you cannot say something nice – Think about what you are going to say. If the words you are going to speak are not kind, walk away and say nothing at all. Make a point of only saying kind and positive words.  

Kind words and smiles – Take your kind words and use them outside of school. Make a point of telling the person at the grocery check out “thank you” and “have a nice day”. Not only does this make them feel good, it makes you feel good! Smile at everyone….smiles are contagious! 

Say "Please" and "Thank you"! – Using these small words is not only kind, but it is respectful! Tell your teachers, parents, and friends "please" and "thank you"! This goes a long way in showing kindness and respect.   

Kindness is contagious -  Be the example! When others hear you using kind words, smiling, and using your manners, other people start following your lead. Being kind is one way you have the power to change the world, and our world could use a lot of kindness right now! 

I challenge you each to remember how Jesus loves us and asks each of us to follow the golden rule. How will you show kindness this week? 

End-of-Year with Distance Learning

May 15, 2020
By Julie Quamme

The 2019-2020 school year ends this coming week.  While our school year has been interesting, there is still much to celebrate and be grateful for.  We are grateful to our dedicated and talented teachers that still provided a solid education to our students through distance learning. 

Congratulations to the 2nd grade students from St. Joseph’s School who are receiving their First Reconciliation and First Communion this weekend.  May you continue to receive Jesus into your heart and remember that you are a child of God.  Congratulations to:

Lane R, Kyla C, Lucas D, Maci H, Adam K, Ethan M, Izzie M, Adam N, Draysn S, and Alice T! 

Congratulations to our 6th grade students as they leave elementary school for the next level of their education.  You have learned much at St. Joseph’s, and you leave prepared with the academic skills, abilities, and knowledge about how important Jesus is in your everyday life.  Each of you will be missed! 

There will be a virtual 6th Grade Recognition Mass held for the 6th grade students on Wednesday, May 22nd at 8:30 a.m.  We will live stream the Mass through Facebook.  All are invited to join us on Facebook as we celebrate the following students of St. Joseph’s Catholic School:

Jaxon A, Mia C, Bella C, Kallon D, Addison E, Jensen F, Evan F, Allison G, Sophie H, Joseph H, Karen H, Paola I, Dawson J, Jaden J, Kali L, Audrey M, Brecken P, Jordyn P, Jacen R, Porter S, Chloee S, Kyah S, Andy V, and Dru Z.

Mrs. Ryan, Mrs. Quamme and Father Kovash will personally be making visits to all the homes of the 6th grade students beginning at 9:45 a.m. on Wednesday, May 22nd.  Students will be personally presented with their certificates and achievement awards.  A small treat will accompany our visit!

The teachers and staff of St. Joseph’s School always work hard for the students. Their hard work, commitment and dedication to their profession is noteworthy.  Many thanks to each of you for all you do for the students in our school!  You make a difference!  Please recognize with me the staff and teachers of St. Joseph’s School and keep them in your prayers as they bring top quality education and the love of Jesus to our students each and every day.  Each of them is a blessing!

Our teachers:  Tammy Grundstad, Bonita Bergstrom, Georgette Huravitch, Cate Kapunan, Angela Dahl, Samantha Mendis, Rebecca Westerman, Patricia Maddison, Maria Semenko, Kathy Ryan, Emily Monson, Sarah Anderson, Kathy Kalil, Charysse Everson, Emily Driscoll, Gina Doran, and Anthony Morris.  Our staff: Julie Lysne, Lacey Cote, Jeri Truckner, Maggie Martin, Keith Bodin, Tara Alvarado-Oas, Ashley Estrada, Chris Glueckert, Sandra Jorgenson, and Nickie Petersen.

Best wishes on your retirement, Kathy Ryan (grade 6) and Tammy Grundstad (Preschool).  You have influenced many students over the years.  We thank you for your service.  St. Joseph’s School is deeply honored that you chose to teach here.  Enjoy your retirement, as it is well deserved.  You will be missed greatly!

St. Joseph’s School is pleased to announce that we have hired Brittney Kratchovil as the 6th grade teacher for the upcoming fall.  Mrs. Kratchovil graduated this spring with an Elementary Education degree from Mayville State University.  She did her student teaching this past fall under the guidance of our very own Mrs. Ryan!  Mrs. Kratchovil lives with her husband, Cole, in Williston and is originally from Garrison, ND.  Welcome, Mrs. Kratchovil, to the St. Joseph’s family!

St. Joseph’s School is currently looking for a Preschool teacher for the Full-Day Preschool class.  If you are interested in applying for the position, please send an updated resume to, or call at 701-572-6384 if you have questions.

May 19th (Tuesday) will be the very last day of distance learning.  Father Kovash and I realize the importance of putting some closure and celebration to the end of the school year.  While the typical end-of-the-year traditions will not be able to take place as usual, we are planning:

Virtual Step -Up Mass – May 19th at 8:30 a.m.  Join us on Facebook Live!

End-of-the-Year Parade - May 20th at 1:00 as we say goodbye for the summer!

While all of us have experienced a wide range of emotions living in the midst of this pandemic, our faith has allowed us to calm our fears.  Thank you for being a part of St. Joseph’s Catholic Schools!  We are grateful for your continued generosity and ask for your continued prayers.

Coronavirus has changed our lives…

Our mission, however, remains the same…

Happy Easter!

April 09, 2020
By Julie Quamme

Happy Easter!

While we are all home this Holy Week keeping our families safe and healthy, we prepare our hearts to celebrate the joy of the Easter season! 

The second week of distant learning has gone very well. The teachers report that students seem to be enjoying learning online thus far, but they are missing their teachers and classmates.  The daily Class Meetings have given the students an opportunity to see their classmates and visit with one another a little each day!

Here are some recommended tips and suggestions for helping your student succeed with distant learning:

Designate a “school space” in your home.  This ensures that the students are up for the day and prepared to learn.  It is easier to focus on what the teacher is presenting when one is dressed and seated at a designated space.  This means no lounging in bed while class meetings are taking place.

Students should be checking their class platforms (Google Classroom, SeeSaw, ClassDojo) throughout the day to make sure they receive all assignments.  This is also important as the teacher may re-submit an assignment to the student that needs additional work.

Students and parents should make sure assignments are being submitted in a timely manner.  If an assignment will be late, it is respectful to let the teacher know.  If the 3:00 p.m. submit time does not work for your family, please notify your student’s teacher as well.

The teachers are available throughout the day to answer questions or any concerns that parents may have.  It is suggested to visit with the classroom teacher first.  If they are unable to answer your question, please contact Mrs. Quamme at or leave me a voicemail at 701-572-6384. 

The Race for Education fundraiser scheduled for April 21st will be postponed until this fall.  At this time the PTO is planning on the same activity for the students.  More information will be available at a later date.

Have a blessed Holy Week. You remain in our prayers.
Julie Quamme, St. Joseph’s Catholic School Principal
Father Kovash, Pastor and Superintendent of St. Joseph’s Church & School

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