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Catholic, Independent Elementary Schools Serving Chicago’s Children Since 1876

Mission & Goals

"Our education is not meant to turn the children out small and finished, but seriously begun on a wide-basis. Therefore they must leave us with some self-knowledge, some energy, some purpose...If they leave us without these three things they drift with the stream of life.” – Janet Erskine Stuart

Mission Statement

Sacred Heart Schools on Sheridan Road - the Academy of the Sacred Heart for Girls (founded in 1876) and Hardey Preparatory for Boys (founded in 1935) - are independent, Catholic, single-sex elementary schools committed to academic excellence within the context of a Christian community. Sacred Heart Schools welcomes students of all races, religious beliefs and socio-economic backgrounds. This educational mission is deeply rooted in the 200-year tradition of the Society of the Sacred Heart and shared with the Network of Sacred Heart Schools located on every major continent, including 24 schools in the United States and Canada.

Goals & Criteria

The essence of this educational vision and tradition is articulated in the Goals and Criteria of Sacred Heart schools in the United States and Canada. This year, Sacred Heart Schools is focusing on Goal II: Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a deep respect for intellectual values.

Goal I: A personal and active faith in God

Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a personal and active faith in God.

  1. Rooted in the love of Jesus Christ, the school promotes a personal relationship with God and fosters the spiritual lives of its members.
  2. The school seeks to form its students in the attitudes of the heart of Jesus expressed in respect, compassion, forgiveness and generosity.
  3. The entire school program explores one's relationship to God, to self, to others and to all creation.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. The school fosters inter-religious acceptance and dialogue by educating to an understanding of and deep respect for the religions of the world.
  7. 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: A deep respect for intellectual values

Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a deep respect for intellectual values.

  1. The school develops and implements a curriculum based on the Goals and Criteria, educational research and ongoing evaluation.
  2. The school provides a rigorous education that incorporates all forms of critical thinking and inspires a life-long love of learning.
  3. The school program develops aesthetic values and the creative use of the imagination.
  4. The faculty utilizes a variety of teaching and learning strategies that recognizes the individual needs of the students.
  5. The school provides ongoing professional development for faculty and staff.
  6. Members of the school community model and teach ethical and respectful use of technology.

Goal III: A social awareness which impels to action

Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a social awareness which impels to action.

  1. 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.
  2. The school offers all its members opportunities for direct service and advocacy and instills a life-long commitment to service.
  3. The school is linked in a reciprocal manner with ministries among people who are poor, marginalized and suffering from injustice.
  4. In our multicultural world, the school prepares and inspires students to be active, informed, and responsible citizens locally, nationally, and globally.
  5. The school teaches respect for creation and prepares students to be stewards of the earth's resources.

Goal IV: The building of community as a Christian value

Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to the building of community as a Christian value.

  1. The school implements an ongoing plan for educating both adults and students in the heritage and mission of Sacred Heart education.
  2. The school promotes a safe and welcoming environment in which each person is valued, cared for and respected.
  3. Adult members of the school model and teach skills needed to build community and practice clear, direct and open communication.
  4. The school has programs that teach the principles of nonviolence, conflict resolution and peacemaking.
  5. The school makes a deliberate effort to recruit students and employ faculty and staff of diverse races, ethnicities and backgrounds.
  6. The financial aid program effectively supports socioeconomic diversity.
  7. The school participates actively in the national and international networks of Sacred Heart schools.

Goal V: Personal growth in an atmosphere of wise freedom

Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to personal growth in an atmosphere of wise freedom.

  1. All members of the school community show respect, acceptance and concern for themselves and for others.
  2. School policies and practices promote self-discipline, responsible decision-making and accountability.
  3. Students grow in self-knowledge and develop self-confidence as they learn to deal realistically with their gifts and limitations.
  4. School programs provide for recognizing, nurturing and exercising leadership in its many forms.
  5. The school provides opportunities for all members of the community to share their knowledge and gifts with others.
  6. All members of the school community take personal responsibility for balance in their lives and for their health and well-being.

Foundational Principles

  • In the Goals and Criteria, the Society of the Sacred Heart defines the mission of the school as part of the Society's educational mission in the Catholic Church.
  • Each school is accountable to the Society through the Sacred Heart Commission on Goals for adherence to theGoals and Criteria.
  • Each school's Board of Trustees and Administration establish and uphold policies that are consistent with the Goals and Criteria.
  • The school allocates its resources to support each Goal and its Criteria.
  • The school is in compliance with professional standards as stated by accrediting agencies.
2016-17 GOAL AWARD

It is with great joy that Sacred Heart Schools announces that the 2016-2017 Goal Award will be awarded posthumously to beloved teacher Wenche Haverkamp, who passed away in August 2016. Click here to read more about Wenche.

Thirteen years ago, Sacred Heart began celebrating its mission by recognizing in the larger Chicagoland community a person or organization whose life and work exemplifies one of the Goals of Sacred Heart education. This year, the award focuses on Goal II: Schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a deep respect for intellectual values.

Previous Goal Award Recipients

2016 Goal I: The Jesuit Community of Loyola University
2015 Goal V: Family Matters
2014 Goal IV: Howard Area Community Center
2013 Goal III: Care for Real
2012 Goal II: Josephine Lee, Chicago Children’s Choir
2011 Goal I: Steve Bumpus
2010 Goal V: Helen Bruns Ryan
2009 Goal III: Mikva Challenge
2008 Goal IV: Inspiration Corporation
2007 Goal I: Msgr. Kenneth Velo, Big Shoulders
2006 Goal II: Dr. Constantine Mavroudis & Dr. Carl Backer, Children’s Memorial Hospital
2005 Goal V: Sr. Rosemary Connelly, Misericordia/Heart of Mercy
2004 Goal III: Shirley Ryan, Pathways Foundation

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