In the summer of 1950, His Excellency Bishop Boylan established the parish of St. Andrew The Apostle in Rock Falls. Father Joseph Tully, the first pastor, purchased the property on Eleventh Avenue and West Tenth Street and proceeded with preliminary plans for a school building. On January 1, 1951 Father Burwell E. Beddoes succeeded Father Tully as pastor. Additional property on Eleventh Avenue was purchased and John J. Flad & Associates, Architects and Engineers of Madison, Wisconsin were called in to develop plans to economically and adequately build a permanent structure. Mr. Flad presented the plans of the building which now stands on the corner of Eleventh Avenue and West Seventh Street.
Ground was broken on November 21, 1951 and with steady progress characteristic of the T.S. Willis Company, the General Contractor, the work moved forward through the winter, spring and summer, until on September 3, 1952, St. Andrew Grade School opened its doors for the first time to 202 pupils in the eight elementary grades. Fortunately for the parish, Father Tully had made a contract with the Sisters of Loretto of the Foot of the Cross of Loretto, Kentucky, to staff the school. For this purpose there came to Rock Falls in August of 1952 Sister Mary Eileen as the Superior, Sister Mary Bernard Therese, Sister Mary Rosamund, and Sister Mary Jean. The agreement with the Sisters of Loretto read “Four Sisters will be furnished for September 1952, and an additional Sister will be supplied each year until there are the total number of Sisters required. On the Feast of Christ the King, October 26, 1952, the auditorium (gym) wing of the school building was the scene of great joy as the parishioners attended their First Mass in the new building.