St. James Lutheran


St. James Lutheran School

Any building not set on the proper foundation is sure to see its demise in a short time. The proper foundation for a house, business, hospital, or skyscraper is essential for the building staying upright and functional for a lifetime. In places plagued with earthquakes, the proper foundation is even more important, since at any time, buildings, bridges, highways, and other infrastructure need to withstand the forces of nature.

St. James Lutheran School of Howard Lake is built on the rock – the foundation – of Jesus Christ.

“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”  Psalm 18:2 (English Standard Version)

We believe, teach, and practice that God, our heavenly Father, created the world in six days, and that He sustains it.

We believe, teach, and practice that God created Adam and Eve, the first humans on this Earth and that He is the author of all life.

We believe, teach, and practice the sanctity of life, and that no one is to take the life of another human. We believe that life begins at conception, and that the taking of an unborn’s life is murder, as is the euthanizing of any person.

We believe, teach, and practice that marriage is the union of one man and one woman.

We believe, teach, and practice that all humans are born sinful, and that the only way to eternal life and heaven is faith and trust in Jesus Christ, who suffered, died, and rose again to save us from our sins.

We believe, teach, and practice that people have the right, and ought to practice their faith in their everyday life.

For more than 90 years, St. James Lutheran School has been a part of the Howard Lake community. The school provides an education that nourishes and enriches students academically, spiritually, physically, and emotionally. The school introduces, or reinforces Christian beliefs as taught in the student’s home and church. It is always our goal to provide a quality Christian education in a caring, safe, and secure environment where our students can learn to the full extent of their God-given abilities.

More than 100 students in preschool through grade eight attend St. James Lutheran School. A traditional, self-contained classroom setting is used for preschool through fourth grade, while grades five through eight operate within a departmentalized setting. Grades five and six share a homeroom, as do grades seven and eight. Students of various denominations, or some with no church home make up the student body at St. James. The communities of Howard Lake, Buffalo, Cokato, Montrose, Waverly, and Winsted are represented in the student enrollment, with some of the faculty also coming from outside the Howard Lake community.

The curriculum covers the core subjects of math, reading, English, literature and writing, spelling, science, social studies and geography, music, band for grades five to eight, and physical education. Religious instruction occurs at all grade levels, and all subject matter is taught with Jesus Christ as the foundation or basis – our rock.

Students in grades one through eight are tested yearly using the Iowa Test of Basic Skills and the STARS testing material. Test results consistently place St. James in the upper percentile nationwide.

St. James employs seven full-time and three part-time licensed teachers, plus a resource teacher who provides remedial instruction and works with individual students and small groups. Additionally, parents, grandparents, and friends of the school volunteer, helping with the library, coaching, refereeing, providing transportation to and from games, listening to students read, serving as field trip chaperones, and helping with school programs, to list some of the activities.    

Extracurricular activities include piano lessons, spelling contests, science and social studies fairs, the interscholastic sports of volleyball and basketball, and field trips throughout the school year. St. James has great facilities and equipment, including a full-sized gymnasium, an updated computer lab and library, Chromebooks and interactive smartboards, and a kitchen that serves “home-cooked” meals through the hot lunch program.

One special event that occurs weekly is chapel – a worship experience for students in grades kindergarten through grade eight. The service, which includes the reading of God’s Word, singing, prayers, and the involvement of all attending is led by the pastor of St. James Lutheran Church, the Reverend Mark Loder, or by the pastor of another Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod church. The students are divided into chapel “families,” and sit with their “family” each chapel service. These “families” also engage in non-curricular activities those Wednesdays when there is a two-hour late start. Another aspect of the weekly chapel is that students bring monetary offerings that are then given to non-profit charities. Occasionally, there are special collections of food and/or clothing to help those in need.

The Parent Teacher League (PTL) is an organizational entity of the school, under the auspices of the Board of Christian Education, that promotes and supports the school through a variety of activities and fundraisers, including the annual Walk-a-thon and the Gala. These two events will take place Oct. 14 and March 18, 2017, respectively. The PTL provides funding for equipment and activities not normally covered in the school’s budget.

St. James Lutheran School is located at 1000 Sixth Avenue, Howard lake, MN  55349.  Contact Principal Lee Huebner, or the school office at (320) 543-2630 to learn more about St. James Lutheran, or email

“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Psalm 22:6 ESV