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History of CES

The town’s first public school was a ten-room building on what is today Chilhowie Street. The two-story building had seven rooms for elementary-age students and three for high school students.
In 1931, the building now commonly called the “Old School” in Chilhowie opened across the street from the ten-room building. The new building became the high school, while the older one was used as an elementary school. In December of 1958, a new high school building was opened on Highway 11. Elementary students in grades 6 and 7 were housed in the “Old Building” until January of 1991, when Chilhowie Middle School was opened for classes on the same property as the high school.
Riverside High School was organized as a private high school in 1896. The high school department was discontinued after 1940. At varying times from 1940 until its closing in 1988, the school housed grades K-8. These students now attend Chilhowie Elementary School.
Our present facility opened in the fall of 1963. It is located on a 14 acre tract along Highway 11, east of Chilhowie. This facility housed seventeen classrooms, a library, offices, clinic, cafeteria, and a kitchen. A gym, kindergarten wing, fifth-grade wing, and several additional classrooms have been added since the building was originally constructed. The most recent renovation, completed in the spring of 2003, included additional 5th grade rooms, pre-school rooms, additional 3rd grade rooms, Title I rooms, a new library facility, and two computer labs.
Chilhowie Elementary School currently has an enrollment of 572 students. The school serves the town and surrounding areas. These areas extend on the north to Walker’s Mountain, on the east to the foot of Preston’s Hill, on the south to Konnarock, and on the west to the Washington County line.