Hamilton School, nestled in the south valley of Washington Valley Road, on a tract once known as the Hamilton Farm, was scheduled to open in September 1965. However, the school construction was not completed and the students and staff were temporarily located in facilities rented form the Blessed Sacrament Church in Martinsville, the United Methodist Church in Martinsville, and the Presbyterian Church in Pluckemin. On November 29, 1965, Hamilton School was ready and everyone was officially housed under one roof. Hamilton School began its educational career as a kindergarten through sixth grade school; after the first year, it became a kindergarten through fifth grade elementary school. When the school opened, all the classrooms were filled … the average class size was approximately 30 students. There were no art or music rooms available for the special area staff members. School enrollment, at that early time, in the 1960s, was about 720 students. Over the following years, the school population, throughout the District, began to decline. By the time Hamilton School closed its doors in 1983, its population was down to approximately 250 children.
Four administrators have served Hamilton School: Mr. John Schmidt served as principal of Hamilton School for nearly 18 years, from 1965 until the doors closed in June 1983. Students were transferred to Crim School, located 3 miles east of Hamilton School. Hamilton School was briefly rented to other agencies and remained vacant for a period of time. By 1989 an increase in the elementary enrollment resulted in the re-opening of Hamilton, grades pre-K through grade five. Dr. Edward Goetzmann became the new principal of Hamilton School and served from March 1989, until the summer of 1996. In September 1995, Hamilton School was converted into a school comprised of students in pre-kindergarten through grade three classes. In mid-August 1996, Dr. Lorraine H. Lotowycz, formerly Hamilton School’s Elementary Teaching Specialist/Reading Specialist, was appointed as the third principal of Hamilton School and served for fourteen years as principal until she retired. In the summer of 2010, Hamilton School welcomed its current principal, Dr. Daniel Fonder.
Groundbreaking for the largest expansion to Hamilton School began in the spring of 2005, when a fourth wing construction was begun, increasing the school size by 46%. This represented the largest construction/development project to Hamilton School since 1965. Hamilton School’s extensive expansion project was ready for school opening in September 2006, when fourth grade students returned to primary schools around the district. Today Hamilton School is home to just under 500 students.
Hamilton School celebrated fifty years of excellence in the fall of 2015. It is a vibrant school with many wonderful students!