Kentucky Historic Schools Survey

This examination of the history and condition of Kentucky’s older school buildings, prepared by Rachel Kennedy and Cynthia Johnson, was part of a multi-faceted effort intended to encourage local school districts to carefully consider all of their options and information regarding the preservation and use of historic school facilities.  The Kentucky Heritage Council and Kentucky Department of Education were the lead partners on this publication, which included support from numerous agencies, offices and nonprofits, including Preservation Kentucky.

A survey of all school districts was conducted during the summer of 2001 to begin the development of a comprehensive catalogue listing all of Kentucky’s historic schools.

Older school buildings are endangered community assets, yet they comprise some of the most significant, well-built public buildings.  After conducting case studies in several Kentucky counties, it became clear that leadership on the local level made a huge difference in whether an older school was renovated.

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Photo: Lebanon Junior High and High Schools in Lebanon, Marion County, Kentucky. Now the Centre Square Complex, home to Kentucky Classic Arts, Lebanon Tourist and Convention Commission, Marion County Chamber of Commerce, Centre Square Gymnasium and Johnston Athletic Field and Youth Football, Kentucky Classical ARTS at Centre Square, an Arts Education and Entertainment nonprofit with a gymnasium and office space rented for a variety of uses from meetings and conferences to parties and weddings.