The seeds of establishing a Catholic Education in West Vancouver, British Columbia, were sown in about 1940, when a Sunday School was first established at St. Anthony’s Parish on Inglewood Avenue. Not satisfied with only a Sunday School, Fr. Van de Gavel, the pastor of St. Anthony’s, struck a committee in the 1940s to consider establishing an elementary school in the church hall. His work-in-progress and attempt to establish a Catholic School in West Vancouver continued with the commitment of the succeeding pastors.
As more and more families joined the West Vancouver Catholic community during the 40s and 50s, the desire for a Catholic elementary school increased. In the early and mid 1950s, with the inspiration of Msgr. Hobson, the St. Anthony’s parishioners joined together to provide their whole hearted and overwhelming support for the building of a new school on our present site. Unfortunately, the initial proposals to City Hall were not successful. Not to be deterred and with the youthfulness and drive of their new pastor, Fr. McInerney, the St. Anthony’s Parish community persisted and in the fall of 1957 they finally succeeded in obtaining Municipal approval. Eleven months later, in September 1958, St. Anthony’s School opened with 110 pupils in grades 1 through 5, with 39 students in Grade 1. Fr. McInerney served as the first principal, succeeded a year later by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peterborough.
The school was an instant success and student enrolment increased by some 50% in the following year. The continued support of the community resulted in the addition of four extra classrooms, a gymnasium and a separate convent for the Sisters, which were blessed in April 1961. Around 1980, two new classrooms were added at the east end of the building to accommodate the “blossoming French, music and art programs”.
However, over time the buildings aged and it become apparent that the facilities needed upgrading or replacement. Once again, the school and the two parish communities joined together in the late 1990s with the hopes and dreams of a building a new school. Through hard work and many challenges, the new school started to take shape in 2003.
Classes commenced in the new school building in September 2004. The new gym was completed in April 2005. On April 8, 2005, Archbishop Raymond Roussin blessed and presided over the official opening.