The Sisters of Providence of St. Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana helped establish Sacred Heart Academy
an all-girls' school at St. Dennis Parish in Lockport in 1881. The nuns were invited to staff the school at the request of
a former professor at the University of St. Mary of the Lake, Rev. James J. McGovern. It was the first school they would operate
in the Archdiocese of Chicago, with several others to follow.
Sacred Heart Academy would open the high school section in 1883, with an annual enrollment around
25-35 students and two to five graduating each year. The graduates went on to teach in area schools, receiving their teaching
certifications each spring at the county examinations in Joliet.
The school closed in 1909 due to low enrollment and inadquate equipment.