The Academy of Notre Dame, Tyngsboro -- a private, Catholic school, sponsored by the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur -- is based on the educational philosophy of their foundress, St. Julie Billiart. The Academy offers co-educational programming from pre-K through 8th grade in the lower school, and a college-preparatory upper school for young women.
Our mission focuses on educating the whole person for life through a curriculum rooted in spiritual formation and academic excellence. We nurture a belief in the goodness of God and the dignity of each person. We are committed to community-building, diversity, global justice and service to those in need.
The hallmarks of our Notre Dame de Namur learning community include:
We proclaim by our lives, even more than by our words, that God is good.
We honor the dignity and sacredness of each person.
We educate for, and act on behalf of, justice and peace in the world.
We commit ourselves to community service.
We embrace the gift of diversity.
We create community among those with whom we work and with those we serve.
We develop holistic learning communities which educate for life.
See how the Sisters of Notre Dame and our students live out this mission.
Students Fulfill SND Mission
Seeds of Hope
Learning A World Away
Trip Helps Student Mature
Plight Driven Home
NDA AND Cancer Set her On Life’s Path
8th Grade Retreat
To learn more about the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur and their mission, visit www.SNDdeN.org
History of the Academy of Notre Dame
When you join the Academy community, you connect with more than 150 years of American history, set against the backdrop of the Industrial Revolution in Lowell, MA. Our nation’s commitment to public education, which began in Massachusetts during Colonial times, was renewed and expanded as populations clustered in urban centers like Lowell, and as droves of immigrants came to America for opportunity and freedom.
In the mid-1800s, education was still largely considered a luxury. However, the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur (SND) were determined that poverty would not be a deterrent to the mill children. Just as St. Julie Billiart walked through the streets of Napoleon’s France to welcome poor children to educational opportunities, so the SNDs developed educational opportunities for children in Lowell.
When Father Timothy O’Brien of St. Patrick’s Parish in Lowell invited Sister Desiree, SND and several others to assist in the parish, the sisters eagerly began organizing an educational program to address the long-neglected educational needs of the girls of the area, as well as to meet the city’s dire need for that era’s version of daycare. From their roots at St. Patrick’s, the SND sisters also opened a boarding school in Lowell in 1854.
By the turn of the century, the number of day and boarding students had grown to a point where, by 1907, overcrowding had hit critical proportions. Funded by generous benefactors, 194 acres of land were purchased from the Nance O’Neil estate and, in 1926, ground was broken for the Academy’s new home in Tyngsboro, MA. In addition to classrooms, the building contained a chapel, gymnasium and residences for boarding students and the religious faculty.
As the residential facilities were phased out, the school embarked upon an expansion program. A new chapel and auditorium were constructed along with the Blanche Walsh Gymnasium. Computer facilities for the lower school and upper school, lower school music rooms, and new upper school classrooms and science labs were added. In 1998, the Kathryn Lawrence McGuiggan, SND Athletic Facility became part of the campus.
The Academy continues to offer a unique, highly esteemed educational option to families of all backgrounds. Today, our students come from over 30 communities throughout Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire, as well as a growing number of foreign countries, and represent a diverse blend of cultures, economic backgrounds and faiths.