On October 27, 1946, St Luke’s School (SLS) began as a mission church of St. Brendan’s Parish in Riverside, Rhode Island. Just five years after beginning as a mission church, St. Luke’s became St. Luke’s Church, a stand-alone parish. By the 1950’s, it was well established as a separate parish. The appointment of Father O’Gara as pastor in 1955 began a period of growth. His dream of having a parochial school became a reality in 1956 with the purchase of land across the street from the church. Within two years ground was broken for the new school and by the following year a two-story, ten classroom school opened with 225 students in five grades. Within three years all eight grades were filled. Some years later kindergarten was added.
St. Luke’s School was originally staffed by the Sisters of the Cross and Passion. For twenty-five years these dedicated sisters served the people of St. Luke’s and helped the school develop its excellent reputation. Gradually the teaching staff changed, replacing the religious with lay professionals. In 1993 and again in 2004, St. Luke’s School was recognized by the Department of Education as an exemplary school and received the prestigious Blue Ribbon School of Excellence Award.
In 1994, the preschool opened in the original convent building. The National Catholic Educators Association honored our preschool by asking our preschool teachers to participate in SPICE (Selected Programs for Improving Catholic Education) as one of the best early childhood programs in the country. St. Luke’s Preschool was one of ten schools to present at the SPICE symposium in March 2005.
The support of our current pastor, Reverend Timothy Reilly, continues the tradition of his predecessors who provided the vision, support and love which allowed St. Luke’s School to grow and become a nationally recognized school of excellence.