School History

History of Arbutus Elementary School

Arbutus Elementary School has a long and proud history. In 1885, a brick, one-room structure was built on a one-acre tract of land. At this time, students used slates and the building was heated by an egg stove. In 1917, two additional rooms were added to the original building. This structure, although renovated, is used as the Library Media Center today.

As the community grew, so did the school. Originally, the school held students from grades one to eight. In 1920, Arbutus Elementary welcomed students in grades one to seven. In 1927, an eight-room modern building was constructed next to the original structure. Over the years, an additional eleven acres of ground were acquired and other additions would be made to the building.

By 1932, four more classrooms were added. The total number of classrooms was now fourteen. Again in 1948, another addition to the building was needed. Six classrooms, lavatories, teachers’ room, health suite, office, cafeteria, gymnasium and auditorium were added. In 1954, the seventh grade was moved to the junior high school leaving grades one to six.

Another addition and renovation of several rooms took place in the early 1970’s. This addition brought limited air-conditioning to the school. The administrative office was moved to this new area. Also, it provided additional space for music, speech, reading and storage rooms. New oil burning boilers replaced the original coal boilers. Other renovations included updated wiring, lighting, drop ceilings and painting. Additional renovations continue to upgrade our facility. In the early 1990’s, our school was wired for technology networking. In 2004, another technology and electrical upgrade was completed.

Today, Arbutus Elementary welcomes students from Pre-Kindergarten through grade five. These students also take part in keeping Arbutus Elementary beautiful. Students have created structured beds for seasonal flowers and shrubs to help Arbutus Elementary be beautiful all year long.