On October 19,1949, while Eritrea was still under the British Administration and before federated with Ethiopia, the ground breaking for the construction of St. Joseph’s school took place. A member of De La Salle Brothers from the Province of Rome, Brother Adriano Clemente, was the dreamer and founder of St. Joseph’s school Keren.

A year later, in April 1950, the first class for boys began with 150 students. The instruction was the responsibility of two Brothers and two lay teachers. In the Academic year 1960/61 the level of classes was increased to Grade 5 & 6 and advanced up to Grade 8 in 1962/63. After independence, and in the academic year 1993/94, St. Joseph commenced the high school level.

At the moment, St. Joseph accommodates one thousand eight hundred students and known for its academic excellence. This school produced many leaders and successful individuals. Many priests and a bishop are alumni of this school. Different congregations and two eparchies of Eritrea (out of four eparchies), send their minor seminarians to this school.


On September 2, 2019, the government officials informed the Catholic secretariat that they would come the next day to take over the school. The next day on September 3, 2019, around ten government officials from the ministry of Education, Police, National Security and Regional administration office came to the school and simply informed the Brothers that the school is taken over. Consequently, they have taken keys of the school and appointed a new school director.