Sacred Heart Heritage

The Society of the Sacred Heart has been educating girls and young women for more than 200 years, since Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat founded the order in 1800 “for the sake of one child.” At Duchesne, we draw upon the full force and range of our Sacred Heart heritage to help our girls form wise hearts and sharp minds.

What is a Sacred Heart Education?

Watch this video learn about Sacred Heart and what makes this education unique.

The Goals are meant to express 5 aspects of an integrated life: a lively faith, which continues to develop as we grow; lifelong learning and using that knowledge to serve others; an awareness of the needs of an increasingly globally connected world and a desire to serve it; a realization that we are made to live in community; and a commitment to continue to grow humanly, acknowledging our journey to learn from our strengths and weaknesses to grow into wholeness.


The Sacred Heart Goals and Criteria

Our curriculum, our culture, and our worldview are guided by the Sacred Heart Goals and Criteria. Duchesne's single-sex education ensures that our classes and community offer the support, challenges, and freedom that help girls forge dynamic lives.

Goal I:
Active Faith

Duchesne Academy is committed to educate to a personal and active faith in God.

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Rooted in the love of Jesus Christ, the school promotes a personal relationship with God and fosters the spiritual lives of its members.

The school seeks to form its students in the attitudes of the heart of Jesus expressed in respect, compassion, forgiveness and generosity.

The entire school program explores one’s relationship to God, to self, to others, and to all creation.

Opening themselves to the transforming power of the Spirit of God, members of the school community engage in personal and communal prayer, reflection and action.

The entire school program affirms that there is meaning and value in life and fosters a sense of hope in the individual and in the school community.

The school fosters inter-religious acceptance and dialogue by educating to an understanding of and deep respect for the religions of the world.

The school presents itself to the wider community as a Christ-centered institution and as an expression of the mission of the Society of the Sacred Heart.

Goal II:
Intellectual Values

Duchesne Academy is committed to educate to a deep respect for intellectual values.

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The school develops and implements a curriculum based on the Goals and Criteria , educational research and ongoing evaluation.

The school provides a rigorous education that incorporates all forms of critical thinking and inspires a life-long love of learning.

The school program develops aesthetic values and the creative use of the imagination.

The faculty utilizes a variety of teaching and learning strategies that recognizes the individual needs of the students.

The school provides ongoing professional development for faculty and staff.

Members of the school community model and teach ethical and respectful use of technology.

Goal III:
Social Awareness

Duchesne Academy is committed to educate to a social awareness which impels to action.

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The school educates to a critical consciousness that leads its total community to analyze and reflect on the values of society and to act for justice.

The school offers all its members opportunities for direct service and advocacy and instills a life-long commitment to service.

The school is linked in a reciprocal manner with ministries among people who are poor, marginalized and suffering from injustice.

In our multicultural world, the school prepares and inspires students to be active, informed, and responsible citizens locally, nationally, and globally.

The school teaches respect for creation and prepares students to be stewards of the earth’s resources.

Goal IV:
Building Community

Duchesne Academy is committed to educate to the building of community as a Christian value.

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The school implements an ongoing plan for educating both adults and students in the heritage and mission of Sacred Heart education.

The school promotes a safe and welcoming environment in which each person is valued, cared for and respected.

Adult members of the school model and teach skills needed to build community and practice clear, direct and open communication.

The school has programs that teach the principles of nonviolence, conflict resolution and peacemaking.

The school makes a deliberate effort to recruit students and employ faculty and staff of diverse races, ethnicities and backgrounds.

The financial aid program effectively supports socioeconomic diversity.

The school participates actively in the national and international networks of Sacred Heart schools.

Goal V:
Personal Growth

Duchesne is committed to educate to personal growth in an atmosphere of wise freedom.

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All members of the school community show respect, acceptance and concern for themselves and for others.

School policies and practices promote self-discipline, responsible decision-making, and accountability.

Students grow in self-knowledge and develop self-confidence as they learn to deal realistically with their gifts and limitations.

School programs provide for recognizing, nurturing and exercising leadership in its many forms.

The school provides opportunities for all members of the community to share their knowledge and gifts with others.

All members of the school community take personal responsibility for balance in their lives and for their health and well-being.

Our History

In September 1960, Duchesne Academy of the Sacred Heart opened our doors to the first 55 girls on what had been the 15-acre Bering family estate. Purchased by the Religious of the Sacred Heart, the property included the "White House," a colonial home built in 1937, which housed the entire school. The property was heavily wooded and contained large areas of azaleas, as well as a log cabin and swimming pool.

The next 50 years brought many adaptations and evolutions. The extension of Chimney Rock Road resulted in the loss of some of our original acreage but also introduced the opportunity to reevaluate our land and building usage. In the mid-1990s, a new White House was constructed along with a new Lower School building and the beautiful Burguières Chapel of the Sacred Heart. Today, the number of students has grown to more than 700, and we have expanded to encompass the full pre-kindergarten through grade 12 continuum.

While Duchesne still boasts of a tranquil campus and a sense of seclusion in the Memorial area, it is now a dynamic presence of 21st-century learning firmly rooted in our 200-year-old Sacred Heart values.