Center Street School served as a neighborhood school in Oneonta, NY from its first day of classes on October 25th, 1897, to its final day, June 21, 2012. It was easily Oneonta's longest serving public school, and the Center Street School community always took enormous pride in celebrating its past while always looking ahead to the future.
Center Street School was leased by the village of Oneonta in 1906 to the Oneonta State Normal School, to serve as a teacher training site for its student teachers. This collaboration continued until 1933, at which point the school again became part of the Oneonta City School District. Renovations on the school were conducted during the Summer of 1948, then an additional wing was added onto the original building in 1960 to alleviate student overcrowding. A time capsule buried behind the datestone in 1960 was unearthed in 2010 and its contents revealed during a festive celebration of the school's history; the time capsule was then reburied with new items contributed by students added to the original contents. Also in 2010 longtime principal John Cook retired after serving for 26 years, to be replaced by Mrs. Coleen Lewis as a new era was launched. As a result of the May, 2012 school budget vote, Center Street School was marked for closure, and on June 21, 2012 students exited the building for the last time.
If you would like to learn more about the history of Center Street School, see the multimedia features below for a Powerpoint presentation created by 4th graders in 2010, a 70-minute video created by 4th graders in 2009, and an online timeline created by 4th graders in the Spring of 2012. And follow the link to visit the Center Street School Memories Facebook page where you are welcome to contribute photos and personal memories.
As a former Center Street School librarian and current Valleyview School librarian, I am always looking for photos, information, and mementos related to the history of Oneonta's longest serving public school; an archive of such materials exists, and is constantly being added to. If you would like to contribute materials, or offer to loan items so that they may be reproduced and added to this ever-growing collection, please make contact using the information provided below.