Springfield's Robust History
The District is fortunate that members of the Holland Springfield Spencer Historical Society have maintained a wealth of information about the Springfield/Holland community.
From the members, we know that in 1898, Springfield Schools held its first commencement exercises for a class consisting of two graduates - Mabel Hovey and Eathel M. Wood. Ms. Hovey later became Holland’s first Mayor and believed “...what Holland had been was nothing compared to what it could be.” When elected mayor, Ms. Hovey was one of only two women mayors ever elected in Ohio. She later went on to teach Holland students for more than 27 years.
The first school house in Springfield Township was a log cabin on the south side of Angola Road between McCord and Clark Street. Land for more schools was deeded to the Township and housed the Eight Square School on Garden Road in 1846; the Red School on Holloway Road in 1847; the Green School on Holland-Sylvania in 1847; Starr School at Crissey in 1848, and Clark Street School in 1847. In 1893, the community rose to the challenge and completed a three-winged school house for grades 1-12. It was located where our current Holland Elementary now stands on Kittle Road and Madison Street. Mr. Leo Jacobs was its first Principal.
By 1921 Holland had a centralized school system with nine teachers and 300 students. The library consisted of 261 volumes and a school bus fleet of two! The school budget for 1921 was $15,000.
In 1925 a grassroots effort took place to fund a gymnasium. With the help of the Manual Training Boys and several generous citizens, the gymnasium was built for entertainment and sport events. Then, seating capacity was 1,350. It was the largest auditorium in Lucas County. Through the years, this auditorium has served the community well. It housed the music department in the 1950's-1970's. From the 1970's through 1980 this building housed the district’s Administration offices.
Springfield Township again worked together to build a new high school. On January 21, 1938, the community held a dedication ceremony for the most modern high school in Lucas County. The estimated cost of the project was $150,000. Click here to view the program prepared for the dedication, provided to us by Alumni Bob Price! Per the program designed to commemorate the dedication, the total enrollment of the district at that time was 947 students. Touted as "the most modern building in Lucas County, the high school was complete with clocks in all classrooms, the latest in visual education and sound equipment, a cafeteria and cafeteria kitchen, a modern stage, the latest improved typewriters, the most modern and up-to-date heating and ventilating system, a separate library room, individual steel lockers, a girls' rest room, and chair storage. The graduating class for that year numbered 26. This remained the high school until 1968. Since 1968 this building has housed Springfield Middle School. Many additions have been made to this building, now connected to Holland Elementary School, which was most recently renovated in 2005-2006.
In 1942, Crissey Elementary School was a three-classroom schoolhouse. Additions and renovations to Crissey through the years have increased classroom space to accommodate the growing number of students in attendance - currently at over 400 students. The school mascot is the Crissey Lion. Mr. Oatis Amick became Principal/instructional leader for the building at the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year.
In 1900, Dorr Street School was opened and was nicknamed the “rabbit center” because of the rural location and its propensity to wildlife. In 1942, Dorr employed four teachers and a teaching principal. Through the years Dorr has also seen lots of changes. At present, Dorr Elementary School educates over 400 students - the school mascot is the Dorr Dragon. Dorr Elementary School's current Principal is Mrs. Cheri Copeland-Shull, who became the instructional leader at the beginning of the 2012-13 school year.
Holland Elementary School was originally built in the 1920's. As with each of the district's elementary schools, Holland, too, needed to grow to accommodate the increasing families choosing to live in its surrounding neighborhoods. Through the years, additional classroom space has been added and most recent renovations were completed between 2005-2007. The mascot is the Holland Hawk. Currently Holland educates over 550 students. Holland welcomed new Principal Mr. Andrew Evans in August, 2021 to begin the 2021-22 school year.
Adjacent to Holland Elementary School are the 58 classrooms, gymnasium, and “café-nasium” that comprise Springfield Middle School. Once a “junior high school,” the now "middle school" concept provides education for students in grades six through eight. Instruction is now offered employing a trimester schedule. Springfield Middle School's led by Principal Mr. Jeff Pendry; Mr. Andrew Ward who has served as the school's Assistant Principal since August, 2018 and Assistant Principal Mrs. Kelly Pool who joins the team in August, 2021, and
In 1960 Holland High School became Springfield High School and changed its mascot from the Holland Blue Zippers to the Springfield Blue Devils. Why Blue Devils? Community lore had us believing that it was because students were inspired by a World War I regiment of soldiers, consisting of the youth of France, was known as the Blue Devils. Only the strongest, both mentally and physically, could pass the rigid examination to pass the rigid examination to become a Blue Devil. They wore royal blue uniforms trimmed in white. Was it in their honor? We learned the truth from alumni Ed Gibson, who was the winner of a contest held to select the new Springfield High School mascot. Ed tells us students conducted research, learned of the regiment and of Duke University's Blue Devils and recommended that the mascot be changed from the Blue Zippers to the Blue Devils. In 2020, the Blue Devil celebrated its 65th anniversary as the school's mascot with festivities that even celebrated Ed Gibson's involvement!
Students started attending the “new” high school in 1968. This building still houses the current high school, but has also enjoyed many renovations and additions since 1968. Springfield High School now has a field house, gymnasium, the George E.Tombaugh Auditorium/Theater that seats 750, a beautiful media center that holds both printed volumes and unlimited electronic resources. Faculty and staff are supported in their efforts to educate today's learners and tomorrow's leaders with current technology both in classrooms and in computer labs. SHS Principal Mr. Robb Brown returns to the school to supervise faculty/staff members with support from Assistant Principals Mr. Kevin Rupp, Dr. Justin Bryson (new in 2019-20) and alumnus Mr. Andrew Screptock who took the reins as the school's Assistant Principal/Athletic Director at the start of the 2019-20 school year. Presently, almost 1,200 students call SHS "home!" There were 279 members of the "Class of 2021." These talented young learners/leaders had challenging end to to their high school careers caused by the global pandemic, but that doesn't dim the promise that they possess to achieve the hopes and dreams nurtured throughout their time in the district.
In 1992, the community again supported its school system and voted a bond issue to fund a new elementary school. Holloway Elementary School opened for the 1994-95 school year and is located on Pilliod Road. The staff and students welcomed. Mrs. Nelle Ratliff in August 2020 as the school's new Principal. There are over 450 Holloway Hornets who attend the school.
Voter approval of a “no new tax” bond levy, in November of 2007, also allowed the district to add classrooms and updated fitness facilities to Springfield High School, a off-street loop for bus transportation at the high school and middle school, and additional parking for Springfield Middle School and Holland Elementary School guests.
Construction, at no cost to the district, began in June, 2013 on Springfield Schools' property for the long-awaited McCord Road railroad underpass. A portion of the current SHS bus garage was used to prepare temporary railroad tracks for use during the next phases of the construction schedule. Space in the student parking lot was claimed and reinforced to accommodate the partial relocation of parking for school buses. A parking lot at the west end of Springfield Community Stadium was added for student parking thanks to the investment by business partner Midwest Tapes. Construction of an underpass to finally allow uninterrupted navigation on McCord Road (at the train tracks) complete with a "round-about" at Hall Street and McCord Road was completed in 2016.
In June, 2017, Mr. Matt Geha. became Superintendent. The senior administration includes Treasurer P. Ryan Lockwood, III; Assistant Superintendent of Operations Mrs. Dana Falkenberg Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment Mrs. Taryn Miley (K through Grade Five) and Jerry Bell, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment (Grades Six-Twelve); Director of Federal Programs Mrs. Paulette Baz, Director of Technology Mr. Cory Cantu, and Community Liaison Mrs. Kristina White.
In November, 2018, voters in the community approved a renewal of an existing Permanent Improvement levy with a 0.9 mill increase specifically for Safety and Security. The additional dollars will provide leaders with funds to address potential risks to student and staff safety within buildings and on school campuses. In November, 2019 by a 64% margin of victory, voters approved a renewal of district's five year operating levy.
Athletics, Music and More
The first football team was organized in 1927 with Jay R. Bone serving as the coach.
A swimming pool was built behind Holland Elementary in the mid 1930's. From all records, the pool closed because of the lack of availability of water and the expense of maintenance.
In 1947 the Memorial Football Stadium was built at a cost of over $11,000. This stadium was financed again by the community pulling together. Bonds were sold, the American Legion, the Athletic Department and the community all helped to finance the stadium. This stadium has stayed in the same general location. It now runs east and west on Hall Street, as opposed to originally it ran north and south. Springfield has a tradition of great football. In 1947, 1948 and 1952 Holland won the Maumee Valley League championship. Since 1962, Springfield has participated in the Northern Lakes League and achieved first place honors in 1970,1974,1981,1991,1992,1993, and 1994. From 2015-19, the teams advanced to the playoff!
Thanks to support from voters in 2007, a "No New Taxes" bond issuance financed the construction of new athletic facilities, classrooms, and a fitness center on the Springfield High School campus. Included was "Springfield Community Stadium" dedicated in August, 2009, a new running track, tennis courts (renamed the Jack Wallington Tennis Complex in 2018), and a bus "loop" linking the high school and middle school. "Blue Devil Fields," the district's baseball and softball facility, was dedicated in May, 2009, on district-owned property located off Angola and Albon Roads.
The district continues to encourage community members to utilize "their" facilities. Those seeking information on facility use on the main campus should contact Mr. Andrew Screptock at 419.867.5640. Those seeking use at specific schools buildings should contact the main office of the building.