Did You Know: 1920 Glendale Schoolhouse Among City's Oldest Buildings

June 20, 2014

(Photo by Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez - KJZZ)
The one-room school building was part of the 1920 Glendale Grammar School. In 2006 it was listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
(Photo by Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez - KJZZ)
Inside Glendale’s 1920 one-room class building.
(Photo by Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez - KJZZ)
This is a shelf system inside Glendale’s 1920 one-room school building. The wood is intact.
(Photo by Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez - KJZZ)
The 1920 one-room school building sits next to a modern Glendale Elementary School District office in downtown Glendale.
(Photo by Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez - KJZZ)
The only other room in the Glendale 1920 one-room school building is this bathroom.

It’s one of the oldest buildings in this West Valley city.  It’s also the only remaining structure of what was once a state-of-the art education facility.

The Glendale Elementary School District in downtown Glendale is surrounded by schools and sports fields. Did You Know that in the middle of the campus is a nearly 100-year-old one-classroom building?  

“This was one of many buildings that was built on the Glendale Landmark Elementary School building. And then in the mid-1970s all but this particular building was removed from the campus,” said Jon Froke, Glendale’s Historic Preservation Officer.

“This building would have been considered state-of-the-art for its era. The building like this, built in the 1920s, it’s modern, it’s got a high roofline, it’s got a ventilation system up top to try to capture some of the breeze through the building to dissipate the heat,” Froke said.

Froke said in the early 1900s Glendale residents wanted to have schools closer to the small town to accommodate a growing population of farming families with children. The city decided to create new classrooms. Between 1913 and 1920, voters authorized $190,000 to construct school buildings. In 1920 classrooms like this one, made of wood frame and stucco, were built throughout the area.

We walk inside the dusty 900-square-foot room. It’s practically the size of a modern classroom.

There are slate chalkboards along the side walls, and the ventilation windows above have been covered. There are other amenities obviously put in place in its later years — electrical lines, a rug and window blinds.

“This one, the way it’s designed, it looks like it could of housed an entire grade, or perhaps over the course of the use of the building maybe one particular subject matter or a class would have been taught in this particular building,” Froke said.

There are clear signs the one-room schoolhouse has weathered nearly a century of time. There are cracks on the exterior walls. A few windows are boarded up, and there are three steel bands wrapped around the façade of the building as a precaution.

Today, the 1920 schoolhouse stands next to the 21st century Glendale school district office.