Despite efforts to save Sacred Heart High School, the focus has turned to making this last school year a special one.

KINGSTON – Despite efforts to save Sacred Heart High School, the focus has turned to making this last school year a special one as much as possible for the last graduating class as well as the students who will have to transition to a new school.

The Sisters of Divine Providence gave their offer some thought, but in the end the parents, alumni and potential financial backers who proposed a new school option were notified their decision to close due to declining enrollment and financial troubles was final.

Kate Kennedy, the president of the parents association, said they believe they had a sound business plan with the financial support to back it, but that the Sisters had made up their minds.

The Sisters are instead making plans concentrating on Sacred Heart’s early childhood center and the elementary school open to children in preschool through eighth grade.

“The efforts to keep the school open are definitely over,” Kennedy said late last week. “The Sisters have made it clear they are ready to move on and are not in support of any efforts to keep the school open.”

Kennedy said the outpouring of support from Sacred Heart friends and family in the community has been extremely positive. She said the focus is now on working with the school to make the next four months as easy as possible for families and making school fun for the students in anxious times.

The closing of the school affects faculty and staff, too, she said, but while they are sad, like the parents they are committed to helping the students, particularly the juniors as they set their next course.

She said many of the families want to stay in a Catholic school environment, and a number of the Catholic schools have been accommodating to them. She said the juniors are actively shadowing other schools in the South Shore area.

Kennedy said they hope the students take with them the passion to fight for something they believe in, in this case that a Sacred Heart education is worth fighting for, by developing a viable plan and on working hard and leaving no stones unturned.

A schoolwide trivia night has been scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday, March 13, to raise money to offset the cost of prom to make Sacred Heart’s final prom a special one.

Follow Kathryn Gallerani on Twitter @kgallreporter.