St. Peter’s Catholic School Celebrates 165 Years of Educating Students

August 24, 2017 – Columbia, S.C. – This week marks the 165th year where students will start the school year at St. Peter’s Catholic School in Columbia, S.C.

As the new school year begins, 130 students enter the doors of St. Peter’s Catholic School and become a part of the school’s rich history.  There is room for a few more students, but the intention is to keep the school relatively small, with one class per grade, from 4K through 6th grade, to best provide personal, individualized instruction.

“Historically St. Peter’s has been a smaller school with a lot of spirit,” said Mrs. Kathy Preston, Principal.  “We have a long and significant history in Columbia and we are making plans to look back, honor, and celebrate our past throughout the year.”

When the school was founded in 1852, it was first known as the Academy of the Immaculate Conception and was a school only for young women.  It became known as St. Peter’s Catholic School just twenty years later in 1872.

Today the school provides both female and male students an academically challenging education in a safe, nurturing environment. When St. Peter’s was founded, the school was run by the Sisters of Mercy.  Today, the school has a full staff of experienced, accredited, and degreed faculty and staff. There is one Religious staff member, Sister Vitalina, who brings more than two decades of school experience to her position as the St. Peter’s Guidance Counselor.

St. Peter’s has had its challenges through the years, but with strength and determination the school has always persevered.  Each time the school was tested, including during its destruction by Sherman’s troops during the Civil War, St. Peter’s Pastor, leaders, and church parishioners pulled together to sustain and rebuild the school.

“We are proud of our history and of all the students who have walked our halls through the years,” said Mrs. Preston.  “Each moment has brought us to where we are today; nurturing, challenging, and educating this next generation of students.”

For more information on St. Peter’s Catholic School, visit

St. Peter’s Catholic School has been an educational ministry of St. Peter’s Catholic Church since 1852.   A private school in the Catholic tradition, it provides K4-6th grade students with an academically challenging education in a safe, nurturing environment. The school prepares each student for a life of faith, virtue and excellence.  St. Peter’s Church has a rich history of service to the Midlands of South Carolina.