Guardian Angels School History
The first efforts of starting a school began in 1869 when a house was purchased and converted into a Chaska Parish School. The Benedictine Sisters staffed this small school until 1873.
From 1873-1877, lay teachers staffed the school. In 1877 the Franciscan Fathers were assigned to the parish. Father Wendel Grotte, O.F.M. found the school to be in very poor condition and requested that the Sisters of Christian Charity come and teach at the Chaska Parish School.
September 5, 1877 the Sisters of Christian Charity started teaching about sixty students in grades 1 through 8 and within one year, the total number of pupils increased to 150. In 1877, a new school building was begun and was completed in 1880 for about $7,000.
In 1912 the first portion of the present school was constructed, and in 1918 the second addition was completed. In 1922 Father Benvenute Mueller was instrumental in adding grades 9 through 12.
A massive Tornado struck the Carver and Chaska area during the Spring of 1925. In addition to many buildings around the area being destroyed, the back half of the school was badly damaged. Recognizing that extensive repairs would need to be made and knowing that the school was bursting at her seams with the recent addition of the high school, the decision was made by Guardian Angels parishioners to add to the rear of the building, repairing the damage made by the tornado, bringing indoor restrooms to the school and adding additional classroom space. The work was completed in time for the opening of school the following Fall.
In 1956 a new gym was built with more modern bathrooms, a new kitchen and a stage.¬† Around this same time, the sister’s convent and school were connected by the building you see now. In 1973, after 61 years and 1,023 graduates, the parish decided that it was no longer economically feasible to continue the high school. Even though the high school was discontinued, parishioners and students alike have seen the school grow in many other ways.
In 1974 a half-day Kindergarten program was begun and in 1982 it was expanded into a full day program on alternating days. In 2005, the Kindergarten program was expanded to an all-day, every day format as it is today.
By 1991 the number of women wishing to become teaching sisters had drastically reduced and the Sisters of Christian Charity decided that they were no longer able to adequately staff our school. Shortly after the Sisters discontinued their service to our school and the school faculty consisted entirely of lay teachers and a lay principal. In 1993 grades 6 through 8 were reorganized to become a middle school. The interscholastic athletics program has been expanded to include the 5th through 8th grade students. The girls can now play on volleyball, basketball, and softball teams, while the boys have the opportunity to participate in basketball and baseball programs.
In 1997 a computer lab was added to the school with the state of the art computers installed. Internet and network access is available in all classrooms for teachers and students. The present computer lab contains 30 workstations with networked color laser printers located throughout the building. In addition, our building offers wireless network access for our students and faculty wishing to use notebook computers in nearly every part of the building. In 2006, a mobile computer lab was added consisting of 30 notebook computers that can be used by students on all three floors. In the summer of 2011, we added smart boards to our classrooms.
Over half of Guardian Angels’ students continue on to Catholic High School, the majority of them attending Holy Family Catholic High School, located in Victoria, which is within the boundaries of the Eastern Carver County District 112.