‘The legacy will live on forever’: Waterbury catholic school shutting down after 99 years graduates final senior class

New Haven

WATERBURY, Conn. (WTNH) — Sacred Heart High School (SHHS) in Waterbury is closing its doors after 99 years. Friday, they graduated their final senior class.

It’s really beginning to sink in. The hugs outside The Basilica of The Immaculate Conception on graduation night Friday weren’t just for celebrating student achievement.

They were also part of saying goodbye to the school. The Archdiocese of Hartford made the decision to close Sacred Heart Hight School at the end of this school year after 99 years because of declining enrollment, which led to financial difficulties.

Alumni of the school tried to fight the decision and keep it open but to no avail.

RELATED: Waterbury community fighting to keep beloved Catholic school open after announcement of closure due to enrollment decline

Earlier this week, alumni of the school showed their love for their school by planting close to 300 heart-shaped balloons on the lawn outside SHHS.

And now, this bittersweet graduation night for many of the new Sacred Heart alumni, the Class of 2021.

“It’s not gonna be a school anymore but the legacy always will live on for forever,” said new graduate, Nicole Dasliva.

“It’s kind of sad the school’s closing down. But, I’m happy to be an alumnus of Sacred Heart,” said Raheim Cordero.

Cordero also tells News 8 he’s excited for the next chapter of his life. He’s attending Post University in the fall. The future for his favorite teacher at Sacred Heart though, not so certain. When Sacred Heart closes, she’s out of a job.

“We’re still looking into various options and I don’t have anything locked in just yet,” she said.

But, as is typical of a good teacher, she preferred to talk about her students on their special night.

News 8 asked how she was feeling.

“Pride, sadness,” she said. “Just wanting them to go out and reach their highest potential but sad that we’re not going to have that impact on kids coming in the future.”

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