History of Our School
On September 7, 1926, Sacred Heart Parish opened its first grade school for grades 1-8. Because the new building was not completed for the beginning of the first term, the first four grades occupied the Elk’s Hall, with the remaining 4 grades meeting in the church basement. After a month, the building was completed, and 87 children moved into the new Sacred Heart School. The first faculty consisted of four teaching Sisters of Saint Francis who came from Rochester, Minnesota.
In 1927, the ninth grade was added and each succeeding year one more grade was added until the four years of high school were included. The first graduating class of Sacred Heart High School was in 1931. By 1953 the enrollment had increased to such an extent, that a two-room building (known as the Annex) was erected to take care of the first and second grade.
By 1956, the enrollment had again increased so a twelve-room addition was built. Grounds were purchased near 24th Street and Madison Avenue with the intent to someday build. A new high school was completed in 1960 and was called Nazarene High School. The name was later changed to Burns Hall the following year. After merging with Assumption Academy (the all-girls Catholic School opearted by the Benedictine Sisters) in 1966, the schools included three separate sites. These evolved in Sacred Heart Elementary School in the original building, Junior High in Assumption Hall, and Senior High in Burns Hall. The original faculty of four Sisters had grown to a total staff of over 45 people.
In the fall of 1976-77, the School Board was informed by Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital administration, that because of renovation of the Junior High building, the school would have limited use of the building. Because the limited space would hamper the activities of the Junior High, it was mutually agreed upon by both parties to break the existing contract and return grade 7 & 8 to the Sacred Heart building, and put 9th grade with the high school. With these changes, grades 1 & 2 moved into the primary building and the name of the school was officially changed to Norfolk Catholic School.
As enrollment continued to increase, a 2nd story was added to the High School building in August of 1998. Plans also began to build a new elementary school on the same campus as the high school, as costs to renovate and improve the old Sacred Heart School building downtown could not be justified in such an old building.
The first classes in the new Elementary School and Activites Center were held in the fall of 2003. Today, the Elementary School houses grades Pre-Kindergarten through sixth at 2301 Madison Ave and Norfolk Catholic High School houses grades seven through twelve at 2300 Madison Avenue.