• School History

    The “New” Winthrop School

    With the construction of this building Ipswich reached a landmark in that this was the first elementary school built with automatic oil heat, unit ventilators, sinks and bubblers in classrooms, an auditorium/cafeteria, a playroom, movable furniture and an internal sound system. The school was opened on September 12, 1956, with an enrollment of 425, and had 16 classrooms plus support rooms. The total enrollment for the Town of 7,841 souls was 1,310 students. The total cost of construction was $635,000.00, less State aid. The school was to replace the old 10 room wooden Winthrop School (that was located in the front of the school to the right of the middle door). The town voted in a Town Meeting on February 1955. The vote was for extensive repairs to the old school and when the bids were opened it was discovered that a new 16- room school could be constructed for the same price. The old school had a slate roof that would be very expensive to repair.

    The School Committee at the time consisted of:
    1955-1957 1957-1958
    Dr. Robert Waite, Chairman Dr. Robert Waite, Chairman
    Isadore Smith Dr. William C. Wigglesworth
    Dr. William C. Wigglesworth C. Louise Richardson
    Paul D. Conley George Geanakos
    Brainard C. Wallace Brainard C. Wallace
    C. Louise Richardson Joseph V. Riley
    George Geanakos James A. Doughty
    The original staff of the brand new school were:
    Lena J. Atherly, Principal*
    Katherine Davidson, Secretary (a first for an elementary school)
    Harry Miller, Custodian*

    Teaching Staff:
    1. Grade 1 Dorothy Hammersley* Shared teachers
    2. Grade 2 Margaret Doucet* Reading Mary Evans*
    3. Grade 1 Jeanette Ablow Art Frank Chadbourne*
    4. Grade 2 Josephine Moyer* Music Raymond Hill
    5. Grade 4 Jennie Moutevilis* P.E. (1957-) Robert Burke
    6. Grade 4. Margaret Chisholm* (for gr. 5 & 6 at 1st hour Jan-June)
    7. Grade 3 Grace A. Bowlen* Cafeteria Staff:
    8. Sp. Ed. Mary Williams* Ellen Sheppard, Director all schools
    9. Grade 6 William E. Waitt Philomena Dupray*
    10. Grade 6 Ann Blynn Louise Haskell*
    11. Grade 6 Rachel Carson* Helen Cory*
    12. Grade 6 Edward McDonald* Nurse Violet De Mille*
    13. Grade 5 Donald Cruichshank
    14. Grade 5 Lawrence Boggio
    15. Grade 5 Cecelia Z. McKenzie*
    16. Grade 5 Francis Baumgartner

    (*Deceased )


    A modified Joplin plan of grouping was adopted for grades 5 & 6 for the instruction of reading and mathematics and was followed until the 1990s with great success. In 1958, the first reading summer school was started at the school and the first elementary school science fair was organized. In 1959, the Foreign Language in the Elementary School (F.L.E.S) program was started for grades 4, 5 and 6 under the direction of the high school French Department. This program continued until the late 1970s, when it was discontinued due to budget cuts.

    On January 16, 1986, at a special Town Meeting, article 32 provided $1,500,000.00 for the construction of a ten-room addition and extensive repairs to the school. State aid of 60% was expected. The public voted this on a ballot on April 14, 1986 (1,392-699). The addition and renovations were completed on December 1987 and accepted on January 2, 1988. The new addition added 8 classrooms, 2 kindergartens (with toilet facilities) and a large library to the school.

    The principals of the school were:
    1. Lena J. Atherley 1956-1958
    2. William E. Waitt Sept.-Dec. 1958 Acting
    3. Bertram H. Bennet 1958-1963
    4. Mary M. Evans 1963-1965
    5. Earl H. Peabody 1965-1968
    6. Samuel B. Levy 1968-1977
    7. Michel Bamford 1978-1979 acting
    8. Marcia Fowler 1979-1982
    9. M. Wayne Hamil 1982 acting
    10. Daniel P. Wilson 1982-1986
    11. Alan Lewis 1986-1988
    12. Rebecca van der Bogert 1988-1991
    13. Carolyn Davis 1991-2007 (16 years)
    14. Sheila McAdams 2007-present