Central High School/Central Elementary School History
Central Elementary school actually began in 1886 as a tiny community school to serve the black population of Mineral Springs, Louisiana. As with many of the schools of this time, the school had a dirt floor, pine pole walls, an outhouse, and a wood heater.
As the importance of a quality education for our black community became more apparent, Mineral Springs became the first high school for Negroes, and in 1908 was the first school to be able to offer agriculture and home economics classes to black youth. Hot lunches were provided through commodities and volunteer cooks.
As a result of a suit filed in 1950 to provide equal education to Negro children, the Ouachita Parish School Board began looking for land to build a new school. Claude Britton Sr. donated 10 acres and the school board purchased 10. The deed states “20 acres of land sold for $60.00 an acre”. Central High School was built on this site and the first class graduated in 1952. A fire destroyed the school in 1965, but the school was rebuilt and rededicated on October 23, 1966.
Central High School consolidated with Calhoun High School during integration in 1970, and Central became the elementary school for area students. In an effort to maintain quality education for all students, Central Elementary School became one of the first schools to qualify for accreditation by the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges in 1975. We have worked to continue this accreditation each year since.
In 1985, WOW, the West Ouachita Wins bond campaign was successful and Central was renovated with a new two-story wing and cafeteria being added.
We have grown quite a bit from a one room dirt floor school in 1886 to the modern two story, four wing air-conditioned facility we have today, but we look forward to continuing to grow and improve, with the mission of providing the best quality education for our children foremost in our minds, for after all we are: Four walls with tomorrow inside.