Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts HistorySauer, Anne
Eliot Pearson Children's School [building], 1962
|The Eliot Pearson Children's School was established in 1961, utilizing the grounds and facilities of the former Stearns Village. The nursery school was located in what had been the maintenance building.|
A yearlong fund drive to build new Eliot Pearson facilities raised $371,000 in 1962. Construction began on a modern, sky-lighted building for the new children's school when half of the total funds raised were recieved by the university. The new building housed the Lucile C. Pitcher Nursery School, a kindergarten, and a first grade. Each classroom had one way observational mirrors installed so that visitors and students could watch classroom operations without interrupting.
The building was gutted by fire, however, in November 1978. The three-alarm blaze, blamed on faulty wiring, caused between $500,000 and $600,000 worth of damage. Almost immediately, the school moved its classes to Haskell Hall in order to continue operations, and soon after moved into the Hooper Lounge in .
School officials and benefactors raised $26,000 to supplement the building's insurance money, and renovations on the fire-damaged building included new offices, an administrative area, and a seminar room. As the renovations progressed, another $140,00 was raised.
The Smith Foundation donated $120,000 to Eliot Pearson for further renovations in 1994.The primary goal of the new changes was to establish a more "kid-friendly" atmosphere throughout the building. The reception desk, for example, was lowered so that children could see over it. The walls were also repainted and redecorated.
As of 2001, the Eliot Pearson Children's School continues to operate on the Tufts campus, offering degree candidates the opportunity to gain valuable teaching experience.
Source: OBS, TD
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