Port Washington has supported Catholic education since 1853 when the first Catholic school was established by Fr. F. X. Sailer. Since 1855, the Sisters of Notre Dame, the Sisters of the Dominican Motherhouse, and the Agnesian Sisters have all handled teaching duties at various times. In 1916, St. Mary’s School was built under the supervision of Monsignor Peter Holfeltz and served students in 1st through 10th grades. The original structure has undergone a number of expansions and remodels. Given increased enrollment, a second Port Washington Catholic School was established at St. Peter’s Parish in the 1960s and served students in 1st through 8th grades.
As enrollment declined in the 1980s, the school combined to form Port Washington Catholic School, which is now St. John XXIII Catholic School (SJ23).
Today, SJ23 provides a faith-based education option for almost 200 students in grades preschool through 8th grade. Together, with the support of St. John XXIII Catholic Parish, our school functions as a parochial school option for students in northern Ozaukee County.