Holy Family Catholic School opened its doors in 1996. Holy Family started as a K-3 program with only 56 students. Each year since its opening, our school has grown one grade each year. We now have a Pre-K-8 program with over 225 students.
Holy Family Catholic School's history did not begin at the opening of our doors in 1996 - it started three years before. In 1993, a small group of parents sat around a kitchen table and reminisced about the Catholic schools that graced our area from 1903-1971. It was in this conversation that the "vision" of Holy Family Catholic School originated. The Immaculate Heart of Mary Academy, and St. Pius X and St. Thomas Grade Schools closed suddenly in 1971 when the sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary were called to return to their mother house. At that time, over 700 students were transferred into the local public school system. These founders of HFCS desired to bring back the gift of a Catholic school education for their children and the children of this community.
Opening HFCS was an uphill battle all the way even though there was strong parish support from all three local parishes, St. George's in Post Falls, St. Pius X, and St. Thomas in Coeur d'Alene. Fr. William Gould (St. George's), Fr. Andy Schumacher (then pastor of St. Pius X), and the late Fr. Mike Logan, C.SsR. (then pastor of St. Thomas), met with Diocesan officials. The late Fr. George Rassley, C.SsR. had been an adviser since the school's inception. At this meeting, it was agreed that a Catholic school could be established in the North Idaho area that would operate under the umbrella of the Diocese of Boise, upon two conditions: (1) the first year's operating expenses had to be in hand prior to opening its doors, and must remain "forward funded", and (2) the school had to be self-supporting, with no subsidy from the local parishes or the Diocese.
These stipulations made the task of opening the school extremely difficult. After many hours of fundraising over the next two years, and raising over $225,000 in this short period of time, the doors of Holy Family Catholic School opened in September of 1996. St. Thomas Parish graciously offered the use of its center, the previous St. Thomas Catholic Elementary School building.
The challenge in starting the school strengthened the resolve of the founding parents, new staff, and the HFCS community. HFCS is proud to be an Idaho "model" Catholic school, the first in Idaho to be completely self-supporting and to develop what we call the Parental Covenant. This document is the parents' promise to play a significant role in their child's academic and spiritual education and growth.
As Holy Family grew in the months and years ahead, the need for a permanent home became apparent. After years of fundraising and a capital campaign, in October 2003, the school raised enough money to break ground on its new school facilities. On September 7, 2004, Holy Family Catholic School opened in its new 34,000 square foot state-of-the-art school building to 225 Pre-K through 8th grade students.