Ella Canavan Elementary School

In 1959, Ella Canavan Elementary had been erected and named after the first kindergarten teacher of Medina County, and had been built with the hopes of new opportunities for the small town. According to the Census Bureau, in 1960 Medina had a huge population increase as more people decided to come to Medina, and this increase made the need for a new elementary school, and the solution ended up being Ella Canavan. Eisenhower had control as president during the 1960s, and Michael DiSalle had control as the governor of Ohio.

It opened during the Cold War and the period of Domestic Upheaval, and has continued to enroll the children of Medina up to this day. During the Cold War, on a nationwide scale, education had been stressed for jobs in science and technology in order to beat the Soviet Union in the arms race and space race. Medina also went along for the ride when it came to trying to beat the Soviet Union. Rural towns like Medina are the hearts of America and patriotism there within these towns hold great importance.

Opening Ella Canavan helped promote the theme of Enrichment, the idea that life gets easier and better. Life can get easier when the children of the farmers have an education, they can be able to, help their parents at home, do chores more efficiently, pursue a dream, or go to college.

Domestic Upheaval also helped promote Enrichment by aiming to get every child the fair and equal education that they deserve, as Brown v. Board had ruled. Better education leads to better jobs, which can lead to Expansion of Economic Horizons, a term used immensely after WWII and during the Cold War to support our consumerism. Rural towns like Medina became more and more populated and more suburban. Even today, one can see how Medina has shifted from mainly a farmland to a suburbia with bustling restaurants and large neighborhoods.

With education comes less limits in life, and leads to the Growth of Individual Rights. The education Ella Canavan Elementary provided eventually lead to people being more informed, and well rounded. Children received education in art and music, which can be a fun way to broaden the student's interests. Education also enabled children to learn to vote for what they feel in the polar opposite world of Domestic Upheaval. During Domestic Upheaval, across the countries, people protested for rights of many groups. From women, to African Americans, to Hispanics, rights had been protested and fought for. A rural town like Medina has opportunity to develop and industrialize more.

Early in its history, Medina experienced a blazing fire before the creation of the additions. It also had a fire in 2002. Throughout the time as society changed, Ella Canavan did also. Even though it has changed, the building still holds fond memories for all who go there.

Images

Ella Canavan

Ella Canavan

The lady pictured is Miss Ella Canavan, teaching her kindergarten class. She had been the first kindergarten teacher in Medina, and that led to having a school named in her honor. Miss Canavan dedicated herself to her job and wanted the best for every child she met. She put her hard work and effort into the creation of the school to ensure that it was a success to all, and that every kid received a fair education. Ella Canavan retired in 1945, fifteen years before Ella Canavan had opened. She had lived to see her dedication come to life in the form of an elementary school, with a letter from President Eisenhower as a congratulations. Image Courtesy of Medina Gazette. View File Details Page

Staff of 1963

Staff of 1963

One of the earliest groups of faculty is pictured here, three years after the opening of Ella Canavan Elementary School. The staff had been comprised of twenty one people. Most of the staff had been old women, a few being old men. This is perhaps the oldest picture that had been made available to the public today of the laborers of this elementary school. As one might notice, the workers had dressed in some of the typical fashion of rural places in the 1960s. A sign declares that they had indeed been the Ella Canavan faculty of 1963. As of 2012-2013 school year, there had been twenty one full time teachers, just like the staff number amount in 1963. Image Courtesy of Medina Gazette. View File Details Page

Lunch Lady During 1976

Lunch Lady During 1976

This women had been a lunch lady at Ella Canavan during its early years. Her name had been Ilo Stockman. In this particular photo, she has been shown preparing coleslaw for her students. Her job had been to provide the students of the elementary school with nutritious lunches. She would serve hundreds of kids lunch every week. The children of the school depended on the faculty to provide for them. Women and men like Ilo were necessary in schools and were often overlooked as just servers but were really very useful to the children. Image Courtesy of Medina City Schools View File Details Page

Memorial Day Parade

Memorial Day Parade

Miss Ella Canavan is pictured here marching down the streets of Medina. A line of students follow her moves and march along with her. The date of the photo is unknown. These students are marching in the Decoration Day Parade, a festivity that had been celebrated by the elementary school Miss Canavan taught in on Memorial Day. The students would march down East Liberty Street to the two cemeteries, Spring Grove Cemetery and Old Town Cemetery. The younger kids would trek to Old Town Cemetery while the older kids would walk longer down to Spring Grove Cemetery. Everyone is carrying flowers, which they place on various graves to honor the dead that rest in Medina. Image Courtesy of Medina County Historical Society. View File Details Page

1976 Medina District Map

1976 Medina District Map

This map shows how Medina had been split into schools during the year 1976. Medina had a population of 9,000 in a community of 2,612 homes. Medina had one high school, one junior high, and two elementary schools. Total public school enrollment totaled 2,834. In 1976, 589 students had been enrolled at Ella Canavan in kindergarten through sixth grade As of 2015, the school only goes through fifth grade. Most of the south side of Medina attended Ella Canavan as shown in the map. Students that lived in other parts of the city attended the other elementary schools. All of the students attended the same high school and junior high. Image courtesy of Medina City Schools. View File Details Page

Sign of Ella Canavan

Sign of Ella Canavan

This is the current sign, as of 2015, in front of Ella Canavan Elementary. The sign shows the address of the school and is a constant reminder of who the school is named after and its rich history. Multiple generations have passed through and each one has unique memories due to its time in history. Kids in the 1960's will have different memories than the kids in the 2000's. The children from the sixties will remember nuclear bomb drills and kids in the 2000's will remember lockdown drills. The sign brings nostalgia to whoever used to attend. It symbolizes the school spirit felt by all. Image Courtesy of Caroline Obermeier. View File Details Page

Encouraged Reading

Encouraged Reading

In this photo, students in 2011 who attended Ella Canavan are shown smiling holding up books. This shows that Ella Canavan still stresses education and reading, much like it did when it first opened in 1960, when Miss Ella Canavan made sure every child had a proper education and was treated like family. Every year the school participates in Right to Read week which encourages students to read more often. The photo also shows that in the environment of the school students are able to come together and bond. Principal Brian Condit states that he admires that there is a sense of community among the students of the school and in this picture students are coming together to collect books. Image Courtesy of Cleveland Sun. View File Details Page

Audio

Assemblies and School Spirit at Ella Canavan

Mr. Condit, Canavan's current principal, speaks about assemblies that they have had in the 2014-2015. Assemblies include Leader In Me, reading based ones, Kids Scriptz, and many other ones. School spirit has been shown all throughout the school year and through attitude. The assemblies make school culture and form a bond between all. View File Details Page

History of Ella Canavan

Mr. Condit, Canavan's current principal, talks about his knowledge on the history of the building. From it first being built, to current day 2015, he speaks about each renovation that the building has undertaken, and much more. View File Details Page

2002 Ella Canavan Fire

Mr. Condit, Canavan's current principal, talks about the fire of 2002. He speaks about the missing arsonist, the cost of damages, the impact on the school's faculty and students, and the renovations that needed to be done afterwards. View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Erin Cuppett, Lauren Hartwell, Emily Fazio, “Ella Canavan Elementary School,” Discover Medina, accessed May 26, 2017, http://discovermedina.org/items/show/213.

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