JPII Catholic Schools

Our History and Identity

Catholic Education in Fargo began in 1882 through the dedication of the Presentation Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Through sacrifice and commitment, this educational ministry has evolved into a collaborative system known as the Saint John Paul II Catholic Schools. JPII Catholic Schools continues to reflect this tradition of academic excellence.

JPII Catholic Schools is comprised of people who have developed a strong sense of family, whose foundation is in the Catholic Church. JPII Catholic Schools strives to provide the opportunity to develop life skills based on values, faith, and acceptance of self, and service to others as exemplified by Jesus Christ.

In following the leadership of Jesus Christ, we seek to teach the message of hope contained in the Gospel. We envision that our children will be empowered to value the dignity of each person. Through our commitment to Catholic Education, we recognize the opportunities to grow in faith, foster a sense of ministry, and to advance a just and caring society.

Our Staff

JPII Catholic Schools employs over 100 people consisting of teachers, support staff, administrators and administrative associates. Not included in these figures are the non-teaching coaches and substitute teachers who are also employed by JPII Catholic Schools. 

The Administration Team:

  • Mr. Mike Hagstrom, President
  • Mrs. Mary Beth Traynor, Vice President
  • Mr. Jon Spies – Shanley High School
  • Mr. Leon Knodel, Principal – Sullivan Middle School
  • Mrs. Kimbra Amerman, Principal – Nativity Elementary School
  • Mr. Jason Kotrba, Principal – Holy Spirit Elementary School
  • Mrs. Karissa Flieth – Trinity Elementary School
  • Mr. Michael Breker, Activities Director
  • Ms. Lori Hager, Director of Admissions
  • Mrs. Stacy Roney, Business Manager
  • Ms. Joelle Shewey, Director of Advancement
  • Mrs. Sherri Simon, Exec. Administrative Assistant

Our Parishes:

There are eight Sponsoring Parishes of JPII Catholic Schools:

Blessed Sacrament – 210 5th Av. W – West Fargo        Rev. Gary Luiten, Pastor
Cathedral of St. Mary – 619 7th St. N – Fargo                Rev. Msgr. Joseph Goering, Rector
Holy Cross  – 1420 16th  St. E – West Fargo                  Very Rev. James Meyer, Pastor
Holy Spirit Catholic Church – 1420 7th St. N – Fargo      Rev. Ross Laframboise, Pastor
Nativity Catholic Church – 1825 11th St. S – Fargo         Rev. William Gerlach, Pastor
St. Anthony of Padua – 710 10th St. S – Fargo               Rev. Raymond Courtright, Pastor
St. Benedict’s – 11743 38th St. S – Horace                     Rev. Jared Kadlec, Pastor
Sts. Anne & Joachim – 5202 25th St S – Fargo               Rev. Paul Duchschere, Pastor

Our Schools

Saint John Paul II Catholic Schools encompasses five schools in the Metro area.

There are three elementary school campuses:

Holy Spirit Elementary School 1441 8th St. N. Fargo Grades: 3 yr old Little Deacons  – 5
Nativity Elementary School 1825 11th St. S. Fargo Grades: Pre-kindergarten – 5
Trinity Elementary School 2811 7th St. E. West Fargo Grades: Pre-Kindergarten  – 5

JPII Catholic Schools has one middle school and one high school:

Sullivan Middle School 5600 25th S, Grades 6-8
Shanley High School 5600 25th S, Grades 9-12

The enrollment is approximately 1200 students system wide.

JPII Governance Policy

JPII Catholic Schools Council Purpose:

The purpose of the JPII Catholic Schools Council is to advise and support the President in the areas designated herein. The Council shall facilitate a diocesan vision of Catholic Schools that is unifying and responsive, and shall provide leadership for operational committees as directed/requested by the President in accordance with the Bylaws.

Nature of the Council:

The powers, duties, rights and responsibilities of the Council shall be as determined by the Board of Directors. The Council cannot act apart from the Board of Directors, and cannot make decisions binding on the Network without the approval of the Board of Directors. The Council and its committees function in an advisory capacity to the Board of Directors. The areas in which the Council may be consulted include:

  • Policy Development: The Council may be involved in formulating, developing, and defining the general direction for administrative action to manage and govern the operation of the elementary, middle, and secondary Catholic schools in the Network.
  • Planning:  The Council may be involved in formulating, developing, and defining long range strategic plans, mission, and goals for the Network.
  • Facilities:  The Council may be involved in determining, creating, and implementing policies relating to the planning, use and maintenance of buildings, facilities, equipment, inventory, and other resources within the Network, including upgrades, inventory, user fees, sales and acquisitions over $10,000, and closings and moving. A procedure shall be implemented to maintain an inventory for each item of equipment valued at $1,500 or more.
  • Curriculum: The Council may be consulted on major curriculum changes and accreditation decisions regarding any of the elementary, middle, and secondary Catholic schools in the Network.
  • Development:  The Council may be involved in formulating, developing, and defining policies for public relations, marketing, and fundraising of the Network.
  • Self-Evaluation of the Council’s Working Relationship:  The Council may be involved in the self-evaluation or internal review of its working relationship with the Administrators in the Network, and in the evaluation of the established goals of the Network.

The JPII Catholic Schools Council may be asked for consultation in the areas of co-curricular activities, extra-curricular activities, and student life, including policies in those areas and the spiritual climate within the Network. The Council may also be asked for consultation in any other area not specifically set forth in the By-laws.

The JPII Catholic Schools Council shall have no authority to mandate changes in the area of curriculum development; nor shall they have the authority for hiring, firing, or evaluation of faculty and staff, or grievance by parents, faculty or staff, except as set forth in the By-laws or as otherwise directed by the Board of Directors. the Council shall have no authority in the area of Parish subsidies.

2019-20 Council Members

September JPII Council Agenda

August JPII Council Minutes

The School Parent Organizations of
JPII Catholic Schools

Holy Spirit PTO:  Holy Spirit Parent Teacher Organization (Holy Spirit School).

It is the mission of Holy Spirit School PTO to enhance the student’s physical, mental, social, and spiritual development as well as the quality and image of our school through fundraising, sponsoring activities, building community, interacting with JPII Catholic Schools and broadening interest in Catholic education. All Holy Spirit parents are automatically members of the PTO. The open meetings are generally held the first Tuesday of the month at 7:00 PM in the Holy Spirit Church Social Hall.

Nativity PTO:  Nativity Parent Teacher Organization (Nativity School)

The mission statement of the Nativity Parent Teacher Organization is “to enrich the quality of our children’s physical, mental, social and spiritual education through public relations, fundraising, volunteerism, and interaction with JPII Catholic Schools, communication between parents and teachers and curriculum enrichment”. Open meetings are generally held the first Monday of each month at 6:30 PM in the Nativity School Library.

Trinity PTO: Trinity Parent Teacher Organization (Trinity School)

The mission statement of the Trinity Parent Teacher Organization is ”

Shanley High School/Sullivan Middle School PTO:  (Shanley and Sullivan Schools)

The purpose of the SHS/SMS PTO is to aid the students and staff of both schools by providing support for their educational, religious, and recreational needs and to promote open communication between administrators, teachers and parents.  Meetings are generally held once a month. Days and times vary; and are posted in the monthly newsletters. Dues are $15.00 per child.  The SHS/SMS PTO does NO fundraising, but provides time, energy and volunteers for: The Annual Art Fair; both student and teacher appreciations during Catholic Schools Week; Staff Recognition; hospitality for various events (conferences, Back to School Night, Catholic Schools Week, etc.); the First Nighter Committee; the Marion Garden; Adoration; and book covers project.



An appeal concerning any matter relating to the JPII Catholic Schools preschools, elementary schools, middle school or high school shall be processed in accordance with the following regulations:

Resolution of Ordinary Differences within the School Community

  • Recognition of Administrative Authority
  • Process of Appeal


Any appeal concerning any matter relating to the JPII Catholic Schools preschools, elementary schools, middle school or high school shall be processed in accordance with the following regulations:

Resolution of Ordinary Differences within the School Community
Every attempt should be made to resolve a conflict at the lowest possible level. Occasionally, matters may arise which will require an objective review by a third party in order to assure the maintenance of positive relationships within the JPII Catholic Schools  community. Saint John Paul II Catholic Schools Network believes that most differences can be resolved through open verbal communication. To facilitate reconciliation, communication and the strengthening of the community of faith, the following general guidelines shall be followed:

  • In any conflict, an effort shall first be made to resolve the issue in a spirit of fairness and justice by following the ordinary and regular communication channels between the people involved.
  • If the conflict cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the parties involved and further action is desired, recourse must be made to the person with the next higher level of accountability up to and including the school principal.
  • If the conflict cannot be resolved following steps one and two above, then a parent, student (18 years or older) or employee may have recourse to the superintendent who will initiate discussion between the parties and attempt to bring about a peaceful resolution.

Recognition of Administrative Authority
St. John Paul II Catholic Schools recognizes the administrators’ authority to exercise discretion within the parameters of JPII Catholic Schools policy.

Criteria and Procedures
When a parent, an employee or a student (18 years of age or older) believes his/her rights have been violated and/or the principal is believed to be acting contrary to JPII Catholic Schools policy, and further action is desired, the person must submit an appeal in writing to the President of JPII Catholic Schools. Such a written appeal must be submitted to the President within seven (7) working days from the date that discussion occurred and only after ordinary and regular communication channels have been attempted between the parties involved, as described in the steps of this policy. The written appeal shall contain the following information:

  • The subject of the appeal
  • What rights and/or policies have been violated.
  • Any factual data, other than hearsay, the person considers appropriate.
  • The efforts that have been made to resolve the issue.

The President will investigate the appeal to determine whether a person’s rights and/or policy have been violated and render a written decision within seven (7) working days of receipt of the written appeal statement.

In the event that the parent, employee or student (18 years of age or older) feels the President has not properly interpreted or applied policy, or has failed to recognize that the complainants’ rights have been violated, they may then, within seven (7) working days, further appeal to the Chairman of the Board of the JPII Catholic Schools Board of Directors. Such appeal must be submitted in writing as outlined in this policy.

The Chairman of the Board will acknowledge receipt of the appeal and attempt to complete the process within (30) days of receipt. The Chairman of the Board will review the materials submitted to the President and may ask for further details. Should a hearing be necessary, the Chairman of the Board may hear the appeal or form a hearing committee if he deems appropriate. If a hearing committee is formed, a member of the Board of Directors must be appointed to the committee. Within ten (10) working days of the hearing, the Chairman of the Board shall render a written decision to the parent, employee or student. The decision of the Chairman of the Board is final and binding and concludes the appeal process.

The appeal process is designed to support the Catholic Church’s belief in subsidiary (that is, the principle that issues and decisions should be determined at the lowest possible level of authority).

An attorney may not represent the complainant at any time during the appeal process.

To the extent possible, all documents, records or proceedings dealing with the appeal process shall be kept confidential.

The time between any of the steps in the procedure may be lengthened at the discretion of the Chairman of the Board or upon mutual, written agreement by all parties.
It should be noted that compliance with this internal policy is required prior to the employee or other aggrieved party seeking resolution through an outside process, such as the Diocesan Board of Conciliation and Arbitration.