From 1940 to 1945 the United States was involved in World War II. Some of the male high school students were serving the country and didn’t finish their education. Some of these students graduated after returning from the war. On May 8th, 1945 the Norwich district superintendent, Mr. Hartsook brought the high school students together to listen to the radio broadcast that announced to them that the war was over!
Many of the surrounding counties sent their high school students to Hilliard High School. The state of Ohio paid for these students’ transportation and tuition. The Hilliard High School enrollment was growing in the late 1940s and an addition was added to the school. They also added seven new classrooms to Hilliard Elementary.
The Hilliard high school football team played their games on the track at the Franklin County Fairgrounds. In 1951, Hilliard built its own stadium and football field. The high school athletic boosters funded this project.
The student population continued to grow in the Hilliard area and the school board began construction on a new high school in 1956. This is the third high school built for upper grades in Hilliard. Two years later J.W. Reason Elementary opened and was named in honor of Dr. J.W. Reason who was a former board of education president and member for many years. He also was a doctor in the community. The former high school became a junior high school for seventh and eighth grade students. Ninth through twelfth grades were at the new high school.
In January 1959 a lot of rain fell on frozen ground that was covered by snow. This caused a lot of flooding in the area. The schools were closed for a short time while the area recovered from the flooded streets, homes, and businesses.
During this time the school district enrollment began to increase steadily. By 1957 the enrollment was 1,612 students. Housing developments were being built in Hilliard, which contributed to this rise in enrollment.
The school district had 21 bus drivers and 2 mechanics to keep the buses running.
The first woman was elected to the Scioto Darby Board of Education in 1957. Her name was Mrs. Grace Tharp. Hilliard Tharp Sixth Grade School is named after her because of her many years of service as a school board member.
The sixties brought a lot of increase in students to the school system. Avery, Beacon, and Ridgewood elementary schools were built and additions were added to Hilliard High School, Ridgewood Elementary, Hilliard Junior High, and Brown Elementary! In 1968 the Hilliard City Council officially declared the name of the city to be Hilliard and not Hilliards. During this year, the school system added kindergarten classes for the first time and Britton Junior High was built which is now Britton Elementary. A Commons building was added between Hilliard Elementary and Hilliard High School. This building had a cafeteria and auditorium that both schools used.
More Information & Primary Sources
The Blue and White, A History of the Public Schools of Hilliard Ohio, 1814 to 1994, c. 1994
Articles adapted by Amy Wolf, Leslie Salamony, Linda Bryant, Joyce Temple and Anita Dignan
Overview compiled and edited by Kay Bible
Souvenir Program of the Hilliards Centennial in 1953