Program and Curriculum

Attentive students on their classroom rug

The environment of our school is focused on ideals, beliefs and actions, which guide the student in his or her relationship with God. The school philosophy is to develop the whole child on this faith journey toward God.

Please select from the following:


Faith Development and Religous Education Program
It is for the purpose of religiouseducation and faith formation that St. Joseph School exists. As a religiouseducational community our purpose includes the following:


  • To enable all students to love the living Christ within them.
  • To help each student to relate this living Christ to his/her personal life in relationship with others.
  • To share with our young people the Gospel Message of Jesus Christ in an atmosphere of love, respect, and understanding.


  • To create a Christian community within each classroom.
  • To provide opportunities for the development of the prayer life of the individual and the community.
  • To impart Catholic Doctrine to our young people through the use a planned process of instruction.
  • To enable our young people to grow in the love of Jesus Christ and one another through the sacraments, In particular through the Eucharist and Reconciliation.
  • To provide opportunities for parental involvement and instruction through preparation for the children's reception of the sacraments, through participation in prayer and sacramental celebrations and through written and verbal communication.
  • To foster the understanding of our call to serve others, both within our community and beyond it.



Prayer Life
If we are truly to come to know God, we must enter into a relationship with God through prayer. Each school day begins and ends with prayer either within the classroom or as a school community.

In addition to classroom prayer our school community gathers often for seasonal and special occasion prayer services and to celebrate the Eucharist. These opportunities include prayer services for Advent and Lent, for Catholic Schools Week, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter, as well as the traditional devotions of the Rosary during October, the Stations of the Cross during Lent, and Lessons and Carols during the Advent season. The celebration of the Eucharist takes place monthly, prepared by individual classes, and on holydays. The students and teachers of grades three through eight gather to celebrate Reconciliation during the Advent and Lenten seasons.



Called to Serve Others
As a CatholicChristian community not only do we develop our relationship with Godthrough prayer and study, but also, by serving others. Our schoolcommunity offers many age-appropriate opportunities to answer ourcall to serve through food collections at Thanksgiving, the Rice Bowlcollections during Lent, and various outreach activitiesthroughout the school year.

Students experienceservice within the school community through our "buddy"programs, through peer tutoring, cooperative learning and otheroccasional activities.

Older studentsextend service to the soup kitchen through meal preparation and tolocal convalescent homes and other non-profit organizations, offeringvolunteer service during after-school hours.


General Curriculum
St. Joseph School adheres to the curriculum set forth by the Diocese of Norwich, and includes the National Educational Association Benchmarks and Standards for Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools, the Common Core Standards and Connecticut State Standards. Coupled with our Religion and Faith Formation Curriculum, our academic curriculum provides students with the tools needed to be successful, Christ-like citizens in the world of ever-changing technology in which we live, developing the skills to think and act critically, creatively and responsibly.

St. Joseph School provides a comprehensive program of spiritual, intellectual, aesthetic, and physical activities to guide each student on the faith journey toward God’s kingdom. Rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ and focused on ideals, beliefs, and actions, we celebrate and nurture the diverse gifts and talents of each individual as we experience community in God’s love.

With the ideal of academic excellence integrating faith with life, we provide instruction in Religion, Reading and Language Arts, Mathematics and Science, Social Studies and History, Technology, Music and Art, Foreign Language, and Physical Education. The teaching/learning process seeks to realize the full potential of every child by actively engaging students in a range of differentiated age-appropriate opportunities for a variety of learning styles. Carefully balancing the advances of technology in accelerating transmission of information with appreciation of reflective personalized communication, students are recognized for “Summer Reading” accomplishments, “Young Authors” original works, and successes in oration and essay competitions. Common Core Curriculum Standards and the National Standards and Benchmarks for Effective Catholic Elementary Schools inform our collaboration with parents in this shared ministry.

Our school family has chosen during the past several years to embrace and pursue two school wide goals:

Behavioral - To promote daily interaction with members of and visitors to our school community that reflects the understanding that “This is a holy place where we discover each other in God’s love.”

Academic - To effect school wide improvement in communication by direct sequential instruction, consistent practice, and authentic verbal and written applications, with the expectation that students will incorporate correct spoken and written language in all learning opportunities.

Our community reinforces the understanding and implementation of our mission by learning and reciting the acronym AMEN.
  • A   Accept each person as a unique creation in God’s image.
  • M   Model Jesus as we make everyone feel welcome in this “holy place.”
  • E   Educate each other for life.
  • N   Nurture the diverse gifts and talents of the whole school family.

Participation in liturgy and communal prayer as well as active service toward social justice are integral components of the student experience. The curriculum is enriched by cultural assemblies and performing arts opportunities in drama and music through monthly class plays, instrumental and choral music, attendance at opera and ballet, and the eighth grade New York theater trip. Student council membership and sports teams inspire self-expression and cooperation to develop the whole child in the image of God.

Students in grades kindergarten through eighth develop the skills to become confident and productive citizens in a multi-cultural society and the future leaders of our Church and nation. With a clearly defined mission and commitment to our Catholic identity we provide an authentic program for students of the twenty first century.


Extra-Curricular Activities
Extra-curricularactivities such as clubs, sports and class-related activities promoteschool spirit, enrich academic and social development, instill goodcitizenship, and create community among our students. Theseactivities include band, chorus, Stock Market Club, the JASONProject, and sports programs, including basketball for girls and boysand co-ed soccer in grades 5 through 8.

It is expected thatstudents who participate in these activities will maintain properacademic and behavioral standards. Students earning an "P'average in any subject will not be eligible to participate in anextra-curricular activity during the following marking period and/orwill be removed from this activity during the current marking period.

A student may betemporarily suspended or removed from these programs for any of thefollowing reasons as determined by the principal.

  • Behavior, which is disruptive to the particular program.
  • Use of profane or abusive language.
  • Cheating
  • Smoking or the use of illegal substances.
*Any act that is considered by the staff and administration to seriously disrupt the educational process of St. Joseph School is cause for removal or suspension from these extra-curricular activities.


Saint Joseph Schoolis proud of its safe, orderly atmosphere. It is one, which enableschildren to learn and to interact with one another and with the staffin a loving; caring environment. In order to ensure this safelearning environment, a code of discipline is necessary. This codeof discipline not only provides safety for all concerned, but also,enables each child to grow in respect for others as God's childrenand in the understanding that each of us is responsible for our ownactions.



Consequences of Unacceptable Behavior


Detention may be given by a teacher (with approval from the principal) or by the principal when a student shows disregard for school rules or school policies. Parents will be notified in advance of the detention in order that transportation arrangements may be made. Al detention slips must be signed by the parent and presented by the student at the time of the detention. Detention slips will be kept on file. Accumulation of detention slips may result in further disciplinary action.


Suspension means that a student is excluded from classes for a given period of time. During this time it is expected that the student will be at home and/or under the supervision of parents or guardians. During the period of suspension the student is not to be in school or on the school premises. He/she will be given school assignments, which are to be completed and handed in upon his/her return to school. Suspension from school excludes a student from participation in any extra-curricular activities being conducted during this time. Suspension may also be held in school at the discretion of the principal. Suspensions are given only by the principal or the principal's designee.


Expulsion (permanent dismissal from school)
When the spiritual, intellectual, social and/or physical development or safety of any one of our students, faculty or staff, or administration is threatened by another child through harmful conduct, (e.g., fighting, cheating, stealing, smoking, drinking, using drugs, or carrying a weapon or threats of physical ham), this child may be subject to expulsion. The decision to expel a student from school is the responsibility of the pastor and principal.
In like manner when the well being of a staff member Is threatened, a student may be subject to expulsion.

Misbehaviors and the Consequences These Misbehaviors May lncur

Detention may be given for thefollowing:

  • Failure to accept the leadership and authority of the principal, assistant principal, teachers or other staff members.
  • Failure to cooperate with the administration, teachers, staff members or other students.
  • Failure to be honest and respectful in carrying out the role of student.
  • Failure to use acceptable language.
  • Failure to accept responsibility for keeping school property clean and safe (e.g., lavatories, lunchroom, classroom and playground).
  • Failure to abide by the rules set forth by the school, affecting personal behavior.
  • Failure to adhere to uniform policies (e.g., changing out of school uniform without proper permission, not wearing the uniform pieces as required).
  • Failure to complete assigned schoolwork in a timely manner.
  • Any reason for which the principal deems it necessary due to the lack of respect for school policy and/or disruption of school order or safety.


Suspension may be given for the following:

  • Failure to accept the leadership and authority of the principal, assistant principal, teachers or other staff members.
  • Failure to cooperate with the administration, teachers, staff members or other students.
  • Failure to be honest and respectful in carrying out the role of student.
  • Failure to conduct himself/herself in a safe and appropriate manner, either verbally or physically.
  • Failure to accept responsibility for keeping school property clean and safe (e.g., lavatories, lunchroom, classroom and playground).
  • Travel on a school bus to which he/she is not assigned without permission from the school authority.
  • Travel on a school bus to which he/she is not assigned without permission.
  • Possession of matches, tobacco, alcohol or drugs.
  • Leaving school property before dismissal and without permission.
  • Threatening a member of the school community with physical or emotional harm.
  • Use of electronic devices or the Internet in any way that is contrary to the directives of the school or Diocesan policies.
  • Receiving more than 3 detentions within the same marking period.
  • Any reason for which the principal deems it necessary due to the lack of respect for school policy or the disruption of the safety and order of the school.


Expulsion may occur for the following:

  • Misuse of the lnternet and/or personal electronic devices.
  • Possession of any potentially lethal weapon.
  • Negatively influencing the entire school community.
  • Possession of illegal drugs.
  • Threatening a member of the school community with physical harm or emotional harm.
  • Receiving more than one suspension.
  • Any rule violation, which in the opinion of the principal and pastor seriously affects the safety and order of the school and its community.