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St. John the Baptist
Catholic School
12319 New Hampshire Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20904 | 301-622-3076

School History

St. John the Baptist Catholic Parish (SJB) was founded in 1960 on its current 10-acre site at 12319 New Hampshire Avenue in Silver Spring.  At that time the custom was that every new parish build a school.  Accordingly, St. John the Baptist Catholic School opened for the first two grades in 1962.  Another grade was added each year and the first diplomas were awarded in 1969.  An all-day kindergarten was opened in 1993, and a preschool in 2017. 

The parish has had only three pastors.  Father E. Carl Lyon founded the parish and guided it until his retirement in 1987.  His successor was Father Francis Kazista, later Monsignor Kazista, who was himself a former assistant pastor from 1975-1981 until his retirement in June, 2011 when Father Y. David Brault joined the parish.

The Servants of the Holy Heart of Mary from Kankakee, Illinois staffed the school until June of 2000.  A house on Brantford Avenue, a nearby residential street, served as the parish convent.

Until last year, five principals have administered St. John the Baptist School.  They have been Sister Virginia Marie Derk (1962-1966), Sister Catherine Bartlett (1966-1971), Mr. Leo Klagholz (1971-1972), Mrs. Peggy Spalding (1972-1992) and Ms. Marianne Moore (1992 – 2014).  Mr. Brian Blomquist became the sixth principal starting with the 2014-2015 academic year.

The School Advisory Board and the Home and School Association represent the parents of the students.  The purpose of the School Advisory Board, founded in 1990, is to provide advice and assistance to the pastor and principal in the governance of the school.  Besides the pastor and principal, it consists of six elected members, two of whom are elected each year and who each serve three-year terms.

The Home and School Association (HSA) is an umbrella group of volunteers.  It has several standing committees (Budget, Community Service, Hospitality, Elections, Cultural Arts, Wellness, School Service, and Hospitality) and sponsors family activities and fundraisers throughout the year.  The HSA finances many extras for the school, such as a faculty Christmas bonus and teachers' wish list.  It also sponsors a school supply store.

St. John the Baptist Catholic School is currently accredited by Advanc-Ed.  Formerly, the school was accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Universities.  The school's first accreditation was received in October of 1995 and was subsequently renewed in April of 2006. In September of 2010, SJB was awarded National Blue Ribbon Accreditation, the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. Department of Education. SJB was one of only 50 private schools throughout the country to receive the distinction in 2010.

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