We are blessed to be educating students in a Catholic-Christian environment for over 125 years! Sacred Heart School was founded in 1892 and has grown and flourished over the years, building a strong heritage for our students and staff.


Sacred Heart Parish and School began from the desire of nine lay Catholics to organize an English-speaking parish in Effingham, IL. Bishop James Ryan formally opened the church in 1892 with Fr. Patrick Ducey as its first pastor. Several of the first parishioners were of Irish decent and the Irish community in Effingham was growing at that time. As a tribute to these Irish roots, the church adopted St. Patrick as its patron saint and the school mascot became the Shamrocks.

A Timeline of Sacred Heart School:

  • 1892 - Sacred Heart School began with 42 students meeting in a one-room building in the back of the rectory. At that time, the church was located at the corner of Fayette Avenue and Banker Street.
  • 1918 - The School Sisters of Notre Dame came to Sacred Heart Parish to run the school. Students continued to meet in the one- and two-room buildings through 1921.
  • 1921 - Students began using a three-story building on Banker Street, which also served as a convent.
  • 1926 - Odeon Hall was built to serve as the gymnasium to the future school. It was leased to the government in 1942 for use by the National Guard during World War II.
  • 1954 - A school building was built in conjunction with the existing gymnasium on Banker Street. The school opened with 222 students.
  • 1969 - A new modern 'in-the-round' church was built on South Henrietta Street on land donated by John B. Schwerman.
  • 1997 - A new school building (current building) was built next to the church on Henrietta Street. It included state-of-the-art classrooms, a library, computer lab, gymnasium, and parish center.

Photo of Sacred Heart School 1921-1954  Odeon Hall, built 1926  Photo of Sacred Heart School 1954-1997   

Photo of Sacred Heart School 1997-present

We are a strong school family: leaning on each other, learning together, and growing together.
As we like to say: Once a Shamrock, Always a Shamrock!