by Marcia Napier, Grain Valley Historical Society
“NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, that pursuant to the provisions of Section 7 and 8, Laws of Missouri, 1947, pages 374-75, Vol. II, as enacted by the 64th General Assembly of the State of Missouri and approved by the Governor of the State, an election will be held in Eight (8) Proposed, Enlarged School Districts in Jackson County. Missouri on Tuesday, August 9, 1949.”
One of those districts was R-5 which included Grain Valley No. C-3, Elm Grove No.47 and Pueblo No. 71. The election was held at the Grain Valley High School and 146 ballots were cast; 116 votes were cast for the proposed new district. 30 voters opposed the reorganization.
With the passage of the proposal, August 30, 1949 was the date selected by Homer M. Clemments,, former Grain Valley Superintendent, and 1949 Secretary of the Jackson County Board of Education to elect the first members of the R-5 Board of Education. Those elected were Clarence E. Shippy, President; Elmer Duncan, Vice-President, Melvin Green, George Taylor, Fred Corn and Lulla Preston. According to the school’s letterhead, Mrs. Preston was the secretary and W. D. Warren was the treasurer of the Board. Carl C. Heuman was Superintendent of Schools, L. Vaughan Means was the high school principal and Mary K. McQuerry was the elementary principal.
In 1953, Murphy School #24 which had previously been arbitrated into the Fort Osage R-1 District was brought back to the Grain Valley R-5 District. With the addition of Elm Grove, Pueblo and Murphy schools and increased enrollment, the two-story brick building, which accommodated grades one through twelve, was fast becoming over-crowded.
Patrons approved a $110,000 bond issue to build a one-story, brick elementary building which was completed in December, 1953. Located adjacent to the existing building, it was built on the three and one-half acre tract purchased in 1927. The first six grades moved into the building in January 1954. For the 1954-55 school year, the first kindergarten was added. In 1960, a $76,000 brick and metal annex was added behind the building providing six additional classrooms.
Next Week: Learn about Matthews Elementary, built in 1978.
The Grain Valley Historical Society Museum is located at 510 Main Street.
Visit the Historical Society’s website, www.grainvalleyhistory.com, and follow the Society on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@grainvalleyhistory).
An architect’s rendering of a one-story brick elementary building completed in December 1953. The first six grades moved into the building in January 1954.
Photo credit: Grain Valley Historical Society