Happy 84th birthday, Washington-Kosciusko!

W-K First Day Jan 7 1936

The Washington-Kosciusko School opened on Jan. 7, 1936.

Washington-Kosciusko Elementary School turned 84 years old on Tuesday, and the school community celebrated with cupcakes. 

The school opened on Tuesday, Jan. 7, 1936 with approximately 450 students — today’s student body sits at about 335 students. It was built at a cost of $367,500 (nearly $7 million in today’s dollars) and was a Public Works Administration project. The school board received a grant of $84,500 from the federal government. The auditorium/gym was celebrated as the biggest of the elementary schools — 80 feet long by 40 feet wide — and was marked for basketball, volleyball and “indoor baseball.” 

Boyum, Schubert & Sorensen, a Winona architecture firm, prepared the plans for the building. 

Effie L. Bean WK Principal 1936

The first W-K principal, Miss Effie L. Bean

Miss Effie L. Bean was the first principal of the school (she was principal of the old Kosciusko school for 17 years). She led a staff of 20 teachers.

The school counted 23 classrooms, some dedicated to junior high students to help relieve some of the congestion in the junior high school. The kindergarten rooms featured balconies, which was a new construction feature in elementary schools at the time to give children more learning space. 

Construction of the school started on Aug. 17, 1934 and was accepted by the board of education at its 1935 meeting.