North Springfield Graded School History Timeline
--Springfield Town Acts, V, pp. 403 - 408
To the author, this type of action seems to have been characteristic of the Springfield voters, and greatly to their credit, thru the years. They never hesitated over substantial school appropriations, once they were convinced of the necessity for them.
1908 -- The committee finally managed to come up with a proposal for a school building in North Springfield that could be built within the $10,000 authorized the previous year. A contract was let to F. C. Woodward of White River Junction to complete the project at a cost of $8,998.
The new schoolhouse is finished in time for the start of the 1908 - 1909 school year. Quoting State Superintendent of Education Mason S. Stone: "It is one of the best four room buildings in the state and the only need is a water supply."
1930 -- Enrollment in Springfield schools totaled 1,657, nearly 400 of them in High School. Crowding had become a problem. First grade in the central school on Park street was now on half time. The situation was bad at North Springfield. Mr. Kendall, for example, had 35 students in one room. The crowding at the central school was solved by construction of a separate school building for grade school students, the vacated space then used to expand the high school.
1932 --The school section of the annual Town Report noted senior high school enrollment of 490, and two problems: standardization or abandonment of the one room West Springfield school, and overcrowding at North Springfield. The latter could be relieved by an addition to the existing school, or by transporting pupils to the central schools.
1937 -- Edward H. Kendall, Principal of the North Springfield grade school for more than 30 years, and in the teaching profession for 48 years, retired at the end of the school year. When he first came to North Springfield, at the turn of the century, his salary was $8 a week. On this he supported his wife, the former Ruby Chapman of North Springfield, and a child.
Francis Mahoney -- a teacher at North School for some years -- succeeded Kendall as Principal.
The School Directors held a public meeting in the north village July 17th to determine the preferences of parents on a proposal to transport their seventh and eighth grade students to Springfield proper. So doing would relieve overcrowding and with the specialized teachers in Springfield offer better instruction and facilities. However, the parents wanted none of this to the tune of 57 - 5. The Directors decided to employ an additional teacher in North Springfield. This would give the first and second grade each a full time teacher, raising the total of teachers to five.
1938 -- North Springfield had 30 children in the first grade. Three of the five teachers were teaching two grades each, 3rd and 4th grades, 5th and 6th grades and 7th and 8th grades.
The annual Town Meeting of 1938 was held March 1, with an impressively long warrant of 37 articles. One would appropriate $15,000 for an addition to the North Springfield school. The article was approved without opposition.
The Springfield schools opened for the new school year September 5th, with an enrollment estimated a little larger than the 1,500 of the previous year. Relief was supplied for the North Springfield school with the opening of a new addition there. This just about doubled the size of the building, providing two additional classrooms, plus an unfinished space which could be used as a hall and converted to classrooms later. Sanitary facilities were greatly improved. 135 students.
1947 -- Neighbor Carl Parker donates an open field adjacent to the school grounds under the condition its only use will be as an extended playground.
1954 -- The 7th and 8th grades at North Springfield were discontinued. Few children were in them since almost all concerned preferred to have them attend the new central junior high school. This release of space started a chain reaction, the end product of which was closing the West Springfield school, the town's last one room schoolhouse. Principal Harold D. Miller, at North School since 1947, moved on to be principal at Southview school.
Most of the above excerpted from: History of Springfield VT 1885 - 1961 By Keith R. Barney, Published by William L Bryant Foundation, 1972
Later history will be added here soon.
The Old Fire Escape Tube
It still exists today, stored away in pieces.
Calling all former students and anyone else who has photos, news clippings or other memorabilia of North School.
Please have them scanned and email them to us at email@example.com so we can add them to our history archives.
Or allow us to borrow the originals and we will scan them ourselves and return back to you.-- North School Home Page --