Then & Now – Oakland Schools Part 3

 In this series of posts, I hope to show Then and Now images Oakland Schools.  Along with a bit of history of each school, I highlight. Some of the photos are in the form of drawings or postcards, or from the pages of history books. 

Note: Piecing together the history of some of the older schools is sometimes tricky. I do this all at home and online — a work in progress for some. I have been updating my posts when I find something new. Let me know of any mistakes or additions.

Updated Dec 26, 2919

E. Morris Cox School (Elmhurst Annex)

The new Elmhurst Annex Elementary School was completed in Oct 1926. The Italian Renaissance-style building was designed by Howard Schroeder. The new school contained thirteen classrooms, a kindergarten, and an assembly hall. It cost $140,000 to build. The school is located at 98th Avenue and Sunnyside Street.

Oakland Tribune 1926
E Morris Cox School. Graham Photo, Courtesy BAERA, Western Railway Museum Archives


The Elmhurst Annex school was renamed to honor of E. Morris Cox who died in 1925. Cox was the Assistant Superintendent of Schools.

In 1960 a new building was added to the school.

Located at 9860 Sunnyside Street

  • E.Morris Cox School Dedicated – Oakland Tribune Nov 10, 1926
  • Cox Academy Website – OUSD

Garfield School

Garfield Grammar School opened in March of 1887 with two classes the seventh and the eighth grades. The teachers will be Miss Murray and Miss Ellen Gibbs.

The school was named for the 20th U.S. President, James A. Garfield, who was assassinated in 1881.

Oakland Daily Evening Tribune Mar 24, 1887

The school was designed by John & T.D. Newsom (Newsom Brothers)

Garfield School 1893

In 1910 Miss Ellen Gibbs retired after 16 years as the principal of Garfield Grammar School.

Garfield School circa 1905
Harry Courtright | Commercial Photo View


In 1926 a suspected arson fire destroyed the original school that was built in the 1890s. The school was a combined elementary and junior high. This was the fourth school to be destroyed by fire in nine months.

Oakland Tribune Sept 11, 1924

New School Built

A new Tudor style building was approved by the school board. The new three-building with 26 classrooms was designed by Miller and Warnecke.

Oakland Tribune Dec 16, 1925

A cornerstone for the new school was laid in Sept of 1926.

Oakland Tribune Sep 28, 1926


Bids were open to build a new school on the present site.

Oakland Tribune 1959

Located at 1640 22nd Avenue, Oakland, CA, 94606

Jefferson School

Jefferson School was designed by John J Donovan and Washington J Miller. The school was built around 1911 to 1913.

School Architecture: Principles and Practices
By John Joseph Donovan 1921
School Architecture: Principles and Practices
By John Joseph Donovan 1921

In 1959 bids were open to build a new school at the same site.

Oakland Tribune May 27, 1959

2035 40th Avenue, Oakland, CA, 94601

Jefferson School – Today

It is now the Global Family Elementary is a TK – 5th grade, dual immersion school located in the East Oakland-Fruitvale corridor near Foothill avenue. Our dedicated staff prepares students to be bilingual and bi-literate to meet the challenges of the 21st century. 

Lazear School

Lazear School originally designated as the Park and Division School was built in 1913-1914. The school cost $75, 595. Fred Voorhees was the Architect.

The school was named after Dr. Jesse Lazear was an American physician and member of the commission that proved that the infectious agent of yellow fever is transmitted by a mosquito.

New School

In 1959 a new school with 12 classrooms, a kindergarten, library, and offices was built to replace the old one. The new school cost $162,456.

824 29th Avenue, Oakland, CA, 94601

Lazear Today

It is now Lazear Charter Academy 

The End

Updated Oct 21, 2019

4 thoughts on “Then & Now – Oakland Schools Part 3

Add yours

  1. Dorothy, Your diligent work of history is very much appreciated. Although many of the Oakland schools were very distant from my life, I still find reading about them quite interesting. Thank you for all your sharing with us. Nan Rewoldt Greig

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone


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