When it was originally built in 1922, Cecilia High School was by far the most beautiful high school building in the parish. Built for first to twelfth grades, the school was designed by the New Orleans-based architectural firm of Nolan and Torre and was located where the new Cecilia Junior High stands today. The facade was decorated with beautiful stone ornaments and a stone cornice that completely surrounded the top of the building; in the center sat a 5' 6" decorative stone pillar. Surrounding the grand building were lavishly landscaped grounds of native trees and exotic palms.
The original 48-foot, three-story structure measured 127 feet long and 104 feet and comprised approximately 33,000 square feet The ceiling height on the first floor was 15 feet and 12 feet on the second and third floors. The structure included 160 windows, 18 exit doors, and approximately 22 classrooms.
A vestibule was located in the main entrance; its stairs ascended to the second floor. In later years the vestibule and stairs were removed, and the area was converted into the principal's office, a hall, and a locker room. The original building also contained an 50'x60' auditorium (with dressing rooms) that occupied the first and second floor. Later the auditorium was converted into a Home Economics Department on the 1st floor and a library on the 2nd floor; it was the only part of the building that was not three stories.
In 1923 the first graduating class consisted of five graduates.
On October 25, 1980, the original building was destroyed by fire. At the time of the fire, a new high school on a twenty-acre tract was under construction, and the current Cecilia High School school opened for the 1981-1982 school year with 663 students enrolled in ninth to twelfth grades.
The pictures at the top of this page are of first Cecilia High School and were taken by a construction company prior to the re-bricking of the original structure.