Tour of Cliffside’s New School
Cliffside, N. C. Feb. 27—On this page is shown a picture of Cliffside’s splendid new school building. With its gleaming white limestone columns and trimming, and the beauty of its vari-colored face brick, and its situation upon the elevation that overlooks the surrounding country, it stands as a sentinel to point the way to light and power. This splendid building, erected at a cost of approximately a quarter of a million dollars, is a monument to the far sighted policy of its builder. It is representative of a new and better day in Cliffside, and in its appointments and splendid construction is justly the pride of this section of the state. While words are inadequate to describe the magnificence of the building, it is well to note here a few of its features.
The building is two hundred and ten feet, four inches long, and. fifty-nine feet wide. It contains fifty thousand blocks of tile, and from seven hundred and fifty thousand to one million brick. It has four beautiful columns in front, which are solid Indiana limestone, and four belts of same material encircling the entire building, adding to its beauty. This limestone was secured from the far famed New Bedford quarries. The building, which is fire proof, is three stories high, with practically sound proof walls and doors. It has sixteen class rooms, superintendent’s office, teachers’ rest room, physical culture room, library room, a large auditorium with balcony which is eighty-nine feet long and sixty-two feet wide, with a seating capacity for approximately one thousand people, a stage that would do credit [to an] opera house. There are also indoor play grounds for both boys and girls. Provision is also made for six more class rooms when needed. The class rooms are models of convenience and arrangement, being equipped with the latest in desks, storage closets and cloak rooms. Three sides of each room are lined with slate blackboards of the finest quality, four feet in width, and set at the proper height for the different grades. There is a third of a lineal mile of these blackboards. On the left side of each room are five large windows equipped with [??] fixtures, permitting perfect window ventilation. The mullions were built as narrow as possible to avoid shadows so detrimental to the eyes, and every class room window is covered by a Draper adjustable window shade. In addition to the window ventilation each room has a ventilating flue equipped with steam coil to draw foul air out of the room, and under each radiator is an air vent through which heated pure air is introduced to the room. In practice this ventilation system has been very successful, and is much simpler than any mechanical system.
The class rooms also have a full equipment of charts, globes and maps, and the High School department has been equipped with the Empire study desk, which is the very latest of its type. For the convenience of the children drinking fountains have been placed at each end of each hall and in the indoor play grounds. Toilets with the latest and most sanitary equipment are also provided. The floors in all the rooms are hardwood over reinforced concrete and tile, and the hails are finished concrete. At each end of each hall are dust chutes which carry trash directly to the basement, where it is removed from the building.
One of the most interesting pieces of equipment is the Howard clock. This almost human piece of mechanism rings the period bells in all the class rooms at whatever time desired, and rings the gong on the play ground for the recess periods. It is electrically operated, and is entirely automatic even to the charging of its batteries, and requires no attention. The Master clock is installed in the superintendent’s office.
There is also a clock in the auditorium. This secondary clock is operated and controlled by the Master clock, and is just as accurate. This equipment has been in operation nearly six months and has never failed to ring the bells, or keep good time.
The heating of the building is done by a steam boiler located in the basement under the auditorium. The auditorium and heating plant are in a wing at the rear of the main building. The heating system works on the gravity principal, and even the indoor play grounds are kept almost at summer heat when necessary. This building is a great credit to an already great town, and adds its measure of fame to a town already famed for its conveniences and opportunities, the purity and cleanliness of its citizenship, and the honesty and endeavor of its leaders, led and inspired by its master mind, Charles H. Haynes.
A description of the building itself is not adequate unless accompanied by a description of the school system which it houses. It is a far cry from the one teacher system, inaugurated when the town was founded, to the present efficient system, modern and thorough in every respect. The primary, intermediate and grammar grade departments have made a phenomenal growth, both in numbers and efficiency, and the recently organized high school department is a source of pride and gratification to the entire community. From a beginning of three, two years ago, this department now numbers more than seventy-five.
The school enrollment for this year has already passed the six hundred mark, and the average attendance has not fallen below five hundred a single month. The school is under the supervision of Prof. Clyde A. Erwin, who has held this position for the past three years. He is ably assisted by a faculty of fifteen teachers as follows: Prof. Chas. A. Erwin, high school principal; Misses Jessie Jenkins, Edith Jenkins, Rebecca Ward, Eva Bame, Gertrude Jones, Blanche Burrus, Ella Lynch, Mary Garrison, Ruth Wooten,Mrs, Clyde A. Erwin, Lillian Kendrick, Ada Bridges, Marjorie Hord, and Della Carden. The latter, Miss Carden, has charge of the music department, vocal and piano.
As a most potent factor in the advancement, more than honorable mention is due the school board, consisting of Messrs. Chas. Haynes, R. B. Watkins and G. K. Moore. These men have been untiring in their efforts for the advancement of the cause of education and have worked unceasingly for the realization of their vision.
Reprinted with permission from The Daily Courier. Copyright owned by The Daily Courier.