HISTORY OF AVOCA SCHOOL DISTRICT 37
Avoca is a Cook County school district, first registered with the county superintendent in 1870. Avoca School District #37 is located about 20 miles north of the city of Chicago. There are presently two schools in the district: Avoca West, a K-5 school; and Marie Murphy, a 6-8 school. The Avoca schools serve students from parts of four surrounding communities: Glenview, Northfield, Wilmette, and Winnetka. The greatest number of our students live in Wilmette. Avoca West School is located in Glenview and Marie Murphy School is located in Wilmette.
The name Avoca means "a watering spout of knowledge." The name comes from a geographic location in Ireland called "The Vale of Avoca." The name was voted upon by the original settlers of the district. In 1923 a two room brick building was built to replace the original frame house. The school was constructed on the site of the present Marie Murphy School. In 1932 Mrs. Marie Murphy came to teach at the school. At that time there were 45 studentsin grades 1-8. Two new schools were built in the 1950s, Avoca East was built in 1950 and Avoca West was built in 1959.
In 1968 Mrs. Murphy retired as superintendent after 36 years in the district and Dr. Alfred Price became the superintendent. At that time there were 1530 students. When Dr. John W. Sloan came in 1986 there were only 498 students. Under the current superintendency of Dr. Joseph M. Porto, enrollment (in 2003) is 683. The Avoca East School, renamed Avoca Center in 1995, is currently leased to Lutheran General Day Care, which partners with the District to deliver day care and after school care, and the Arlyn School, a private facility for special education students.
Avoca West Elementary School has had several renovations and additions. The courtyards were renovated in 1996 with plants and other materials to attract insects and birds enhancing the elementary science curriculum. A new Information and Technology Center was constructed in 1998. This addition created three new classrooms in the location of the former Information and Technology Center and created a new Information and Technology Center in the front of the school.
Rebuilding and renovation of Marie Murphy School took place in 1992. The original 1923 structure was demolished and the other wings were upgraded. A technology wing was built, housing the computer labs and library (now called the Information and Technology Center). New science classrooms, music and orchestra rooms, and a multipurpose room were also completed.
Avoca School District # 37 is a publicly funded organization
No. of Schools: 2
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