Picturing the Past continues the history of Brevard schools through the mid-20th
century. After the old 1908 schoolhouse
was declared unsafe during the summer of 1936 all 536 elementary students were
moved into the building originally constructed as the high school in 1919.
|Brevard Primary is today the offices of the
Register of Deeds and Tax Administration.
Progress Administration provided about 70% of the cost for a new primary grades
school on the corner of Broad and Morgan Streets. The WPA also provided most of the labor. On March 14, 1938 240 students and six
teachers moved into the new building.
There was now room for 60 pupils per classroom in grades 1-3. For the next 10 years Brevard Elementary operated
in the two buildings.
As the local
economy and population continued to grow and the first of the generation that
would become known as baby boomers reached school age the school system was
again pushed to its limits.
|Brevard Elementary is the Community Services building
with several county departments located in it today.
In 1946 a
$310,000 school bond was passed for school improvements and additional
facilities. $192,000 of the bond went to
construct a third building for Brevard Elementary. The two-story, 11-room brick school for
grades 6-8 opened in September 1948 on Gaston Street. The three buildings would serve Brevard
elementary students for the next 30 years.
The African American community also received a new school in 1948 to
replace their schoolhouse that had burned seven years earlier.
During the interim students had attended class in churches. Bond money was not used for the new Rosenwald
School because the School Board had been setting aside funds for its
construction already. However, the school board did not provide
furnishings for the school. The old desks and chairs from the church
classrooms were moved, funds were raised by the community to purchase kitchen
equipment and a piano, and the fluorescent lights were provided by the Lions
In September 1959
students in grades 10-12 moved to the new Brevard High School on Country Club Rd. In 1960 the first Brevard Junior High opened
in the old high school on Broad St. with seventh through ninth grade students
from Brevard, Penrose, and Straus schools.
It wasn’t until 1966 the ninth graders moved to the Brevard High.
High had become integrated in 1962 Transylvania County Schools were not
completely integrated until 1966. That fall
Rosenwald School closed and elementary students began attending Brevard Elementary
and Brevard Junior High. That same year the
ninth grade was moved to the Brevard High.
In January 1975
the current Brevard Elementary and Brevard Middle schools opened. This marked the first time in about 70 years
that schools were not located in downtown Brevard.
During the next
couple week Picturing the Past will show changes to downtown Brevard during
this same period of 1940 through the mid-1970s.
Photographs and information for this column
are provided by the Rowell Bosse North Carolina Room, Transylvania County
Library. Visit the NC Room during regular library hours (Monday-Friday)
to learn more about our history and see additional photographs. For more
information, comments, or suggestions contact Marcy at [email protected] or