What is thunderblock?

In pursuit of our mission of passing on the Catholic faith, we constantly examine best practices that allow students to lead balanced lives with time for prayer, family, academics, socialization, and other interests. After receiving feedback from students, parents, and teachers, it was determined that the greatest need of our student body was flexible time during the school day for students to meet their individual needs, in particular those needs related to academic learning interventions. The St. James Academy Thunder Block will provide this time. It will also help students get an experience of a less structured environment similar to what they will experience in college and the workplace to help them learn the power their choice has in structuring their lives.

Thunderblock schedule

​​See our Class Schedules for the schedule for Thunder Block this year.

StudENt options

  • Chapel open for prayer (with Adoration and confession available on Tuesdays).
  • Student discipleship groups and/or Bible studies led by students and/or teachers in classrooms.
  • Teachers are available for one section of Thunder Block (TB) for meeting with students, running study sessions, supervising makeup work/tests, etc. in classrooms.
  • Collaboration Center in the gym for students to work together or socialize.
  • Silent study area in the Media Center.
  • Work in academic wing hallways; students must be seated with their backs against the glass walls and no food is allowed.
  • Spark Center For Academics in room 1110 (peer tutors available to meet with students).
  • Lunch in the Dining Hall, Performance Wing hallway, or classrooms when allowed.
  • All students will be expected to meet with any teacher at their request and/or in whose class they have a grade below 67% at least once a week until it is passing.
  • Failure to do so results in being assigned Mandatory Learning Time (MLT) in which a student is scheduled a time to meet with their teacher(s).
  • Students who fail to meet with their teachers during their scheduled MLT will be assigned office detention to be served immediately after school or the next morning before school.


  • Teachers will have a scheduled lunch break during one of the two TB time slots.
  • They can dedicate two other time slots a month towards…
    • Meeting with clubs they sponsor
    • Meeting with students for discipleship groups or Bible studies
  • On late start days, teachers will be in Professional Development and are not available for students.  The make-up testing center will be available from 7:55 – 8:55 a.m; please see your teacher about scheduling a make-up test during this time.
  • Teachers’ TB schedules of availability will be posted outside of their rooms.


Supervision will be much more limited during TB than during other times during the school day.

Respect for the trust given to students during this time is critical to the success of the program. Supervision will be assigned as below:

  • Administrative supervision in the hallways, gym, and dining hall.
  • School Resource Officer monitoring the parking lots and outside.
  • All exits are monitored via camera by a staff member.
  • Media Center supervised by Counseling and Technology staff.

Rules and Limitations

  • Expectations for TB will be set and reviewed at the beginning of each semester.
  • Students who break school rules during TB may be given an office detention
  • Locker rooms will be locked and off-limits.
  • Cell phone use is not allowed except at lockers during passing periods.
  • Students are not allowed to leave the building unless checked out with the office.