Fast Facts & Answers to
Frequently Asked Questions


Founded in 1886 by the Sisters of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary to educate children of Irish immigrants, our school has educated generations of students since that time growing in culture and diversity to reflect our communities. We continue to be a vibrant Catholic school welcoming families of all traditions.


St. Bernard’s Elementary School is fully accredited by NEASC, The New England Association of Schools and Colleges. Member of NCEA, the National Catholic Educational Association.


Owned and operated by the Parish of St. Bernard’s worshiping at St. Camillus Church under the supervision of the Bishop and Superintendent of Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Worcester.

School Year

Begins the last week in August and concludes in June with vacations at Christmas, in February and in April. Trimester marking periods with a Progress Report given at mid-point of each.


A well designed building opened in 1966 contains 16 classrooms – Pre-K 3, Pre-K 4, K, Grs.1 – 8, Art, Music, Science Lab, Computer Lab and Library with an office wing with Principal’s Office, Main Office, Business Office, Nurse’s Office and Faculty Room. An All Purpose Room used for Liturgy, lunches, drama productions, school gatherings, meetings and events. STB has a large grass playing field, playground and large blacktop area. A four year grant supports capital improvements.

Faculty and Staff

Full time Principal with 9 full time teachers and 10 part time teachers in the areas of French, Science, ELA, Art, Music, Computers, Physical Education, Library and Liturgical Music. Early education classrooms are supported by 6 paraprofessionals. There is a full time nurse on staff. Operations are supported by an Administrative Assistant for Business, an Administrative Assistant for the Main Office and Lunch Director, and an After School Program Director. There is a full time custodian.


STB educates more than 250 students from Pre-K and Kindergarten to Grade 8. Students are drawn from 3 cities and 11 towns across northern Worcester County and southern New Hampshire from families that represent the greater diversity of our local communities.


Pre-K to Grade 8. Class sizes are between 20 and 28. The Pre-K class is supported by 2 paraprofessionals with a paraprofessional in Kindergarten, Grade 1, 2 and 3.


Programing for four year old children. The day begins at 8:45 AM and ends at 2:45 PM. 


All students in Grs. 4 – 8 take core academic subjects daily – Religion, Reading/ELA/English, Math, Science and Social Studies, Grs. 7 & 8 take French 3 times a week. Grs. 1-3 spend more time on literacy and numeracy and less time on Science and Social Studies.

Academic Enrichment

Students in Kindergarten – Grade 8 have weekly classes in Art, Computers and Physical Education.
Students in in Kindergarten – Grade 5 have weekly classes in Music.
Students in Kindergarten – Grade 7 have weekly classes in the Library. Grades 7 & 8 have French three times a week.

Curriculum Updates

STB Elementary continues to update materials and programs – Reading/ ELA – Wonders Reading program Grs. 1-6 McGraw Hill Publishing, 2023; Massachusetts, Our Home Gr. 3 Gibbs Smith Education 2020, Voyages in English Grs. 7 & 8, Loyola Press 2018, Sadlier Progress in Math or Sadlier Math Grs. K – 8, Sadlier Publishing 2019; Elevate Science, Grs. 4 – 8; Pearson Publishing 2019. All academic programs have an online platform that teachers utilize to support their instruction within the classrooms.


Text and reference collection continues to be updated and expanded; the library is in the process of automating its system for locating, checking out and returning books. Flexible seating can meet the needs of small and class size groups; flipper tables on wheels can open up the space for multiple uses.


Supports education in all classrooms. Wireless connectivity in all spaces with a document camera, IPEVO system, LCD projector and white board in each classroom. Every teacher has a laptop. New curriculum programs have online platforms and components to support instruction. Computer Lab has 29 student stations and a SMART board, 140 Chromebooks available in Grades 4 – 8 and Kindle Fires from Pre-K to Grade 3. Multiple pairs of robots used for coding activities.


Before, during or after school. Eighth Grade Class Officers, National Junior Honor Society (6 – 8), Student Council (6 – 8), Crazy 8s Math Club, Band, Book Buddies and Drama (6-8).


Opportunities for after school sports across 3 seasons. Field Hockey – Girls Grs. 5 – 8, Flag Football Boys and Girls Grs. 5 – 8, Basketball Boys and Girls Grs. 1- 8. 


One of the hallmarks of our students is generous service. Book Buddies in Pre-K and Gr. 6, K and Gr. 8, Grade 1 and Grade 6 form special bonds. Student Council supports a variety of charities via fundraising and donations. Casual for a Cause days allow the pleasures of being out of uniform while supporting a charity. Students serve at the annual Grandparents Luncheon, welcome visitors and help with a multitude of tasks; students are asked to be of service to one another with Gr. 8 leading the way.

Bus Transportation

Available to Fitchburg residents who meet the distance requirement from residence to school as set by the Fitchburg Public School. There may be a cost per month for this service as determined by the FPS. Information available by contacting the STB Main Office.

Before and After School Program

 Kindergarten to Grade 2 students needing to arrive prior to 8:30 AM attend our Before School Program which opens at 7:45 AM. Grs. 3 – 8 may arrive at school as early as 7:45 AM and are proctored in the cafeteria at no cost. Kindergarten -Grade 8 may attend our After School Program from 2:50 PM – 5:30 PM. Both programs are $8.00/hour and billed through Procare.

These programs are not designed to meet the needs of our youngest students and are, therefore, not open to them. PreK students who need to arrive slightly before or stay slightly after school must have the permission of the Principal to participate in either or both of these programs. Please contact the Main Office to discuss this with the Principal.


Option to bring a bagged lunch or purchase hot lunches each day. Hot lunch is provided Monday-Thursday by Monty Tech main food service program.  Pizza available on Fridays. Ordering in advance with menus provided at the start of the month. Vending machine with chilled water.

Tuition and Tuition Assistance

Tuition payments via FACTS may be made over 10 months, quaterly or semiannually.  Annual application to the Diocese of Worcester is made for tuition assistance in late winter or early spring for the following school year. Registration for that school year required to apply. Grants depend on a family’s financial profile, which is considered relative to others in the pool of candidates for aid.


Students in Kindergarten – Grade 8 wear uniforms with warm weather uniform options in the fall and spring. Gym uniforms are worn for the full the day of gym class. The full Dress Code is published on the school’s website.

Pre-K students do not wear uniforms.

STB's Literacy Program and the Science of Reading

STB recognizes that reading instruction is the foundation of all academic skills;  being a proficient reader has an impact on a student’s entire education in every academic area.  

St. Bernard’s Elementary School never moved away from the phonemic basis for  the teaching of reading. STB has fully embraced the current philosophy of reading  instruction referred to as Structured Literacy, an approach to teaching reading that is based on the Science of Reading. The Science of Reading identifies five essential  components for comprehensive reading instruction; Structured Literacy incorporates all five components into their lessons. 

Phonemic Awareness 





All of the programs adopted by STB incorporate recommended multi-sensory instructional techniques and support instruction that is explicit, sequential, systematic, prescriptive, diagnostic, and cumulative. Instruction is assessment-driven. The diagnostic aspect of the Science of Reading requires benchmarking and continued progress monitoring to measure outcomes and guide differentiation of instruction.