History

At Oak Street School we believe that each child is an individual who learns through a dynamic process. Learning will take place in an enriching, safe and fun environment that will promote individual success while also developing responsible learners and contributing members of a democratic society. Furthermore, we expect our students to use their academic and social skills to meet the challenges and opportunities they will experience living and working in a rapidly changing and diverse society.

Dr. Horatio Gates Whitnall originally owned the property on which Oak Street School was built. The land was used for farming and his home was what is now the Summit Bank. He was one of the richest men in town in the late 1800's. He died in the early 1900's and at that time his daughter sold the property to the Bernards Township Board of Education. 
    
    Oak Street school cost $200,000 to build.  The  building was not completed on time and was finally opened November 23, 1939, the day before Thanksgiving.  Then more than 200 pupils gathered their books and knick-knacks, put them in paper bags and marched two by two, led by their teachers from the old South Maple Avenue School to the spacious, modern new brick school.  The original building contained nine classrooms, an auditorium with its lobby equipped with a built- in ticket booth, a cafeteria, manual arts shop, gym and locker room, home economics room and a small office.
     
    At the school's dedication on November 21, 1939, the Neill Card American Legion Post presented the platform flag for the auditorium.  There were five hundred interested parents and taxpayers present.
     
    Between the opening of the school in 1939 and 1969, school enrollment rose from 200 students to 450 students, with a faculty of 43.  In the late 1980s enrollment dropped down to 330 students in the now pre-K-5 school, but a new media center and classrooms were added.  Throughout the 1990s, Oak Street experienced more growth, both in building size and in student enrollment. Currently, there are over 600 students enrolled at Oak Street School.