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History of Centerville Schools

Centerville traces its beginnings to Aaron Nutt, Benjamin Robbins, and Benjamin Archer who came in 1796 to survey the land with the intent of settling it.

The following year Dr. John Hole, his wife and five children settled an area along what is now referred to as Hole's Creek.

Edmund Munger arrived in 1799 with his family. He was a strong proponent of formal schooling. The seven Munger children attended what people of the time called a neighborhood school. It was a building made of logs cut from the surrounding hardwood forests. Attendance at those neighborhood schools was irregular, especially for boys who were needed to help at home with farm chores.

By 1825, the Ohio legislature realized that funds generated from the section set aside in each township to raise revenue for schools was inadequate to serve Ohio's rapidly growing communities. The result was a law authorizing a state-wide school tax.

This law encouraged the building of more and sturdier school buildings. Brick replaced the log cabin school, and the number of schools in Washington Township increased to nine. They were called district schools.

In 1863 the Centerville and Washington Township communities had approximately 550 students. This number fluctuated over the years but remained in the hundreds until 1955 when the number of pupils grew to more than 1,110. This number doubled by 1960, and by 1969, when the district became known as Centerville City Schools, enrollment surpassed 6,800 students. In 2002 the census included more than 7,600. Students attended an all-kindergarten building, six elementary schools, three middle schools, and one high school.

Today, Centerville City Schools serve more than 8,300 students, offering a variety of educational programs to a diverse student population. The district operates two primary schools (grades PreK-1), six elementary schools (grades 2-5), three middle schools (grades 6-8), one high school, and the School of Possibilities.


Historical information came from the book Centerville-Washington Township Schools - 1803-2003: A Great Place to Learn by Pamela Ferris-Olson.
Image of four students in first CHS graduating class