Our Students

Our students in grades 1-12 number more than 200 each year. We have one first grade, and two each of grades 2-8 in our on-campus elementary school. High school students live in on-campus homes and attend Chamberlain High School.

They come from more than 30 communities in South Dakota and surrounding states and are enrolled members of more than 10 tribes, though most are affiliated with Lakota, Dakota and Nakota tribes. While the majority are from reservation communities, around 35% are from towns and cities that are off-reservation.

Our Students’ Home Life

The injustices done to Native Americans have led to historical trauma, high poverty and unemployment, and our students’ families have been affected. It is important to understand that parents and guardians want the best for their students, and we seek partnership with them. Their involvement in their student’s life is vital to their student’s success.

Slightly more than half come from homes where the head of household has some employment and slightly more than half are in homes with only one parent.

Nearly half have been exposed to drug and alcohol use at home, and many have witnessed domestic violence.

Counseling Services are an essential piece of the wraparound services offered at St. Joseph’s Indian School.