Hilliard’s population continued to grow and so did the student population. Scioto-Darby Local School District was changed to Scioto Darby City School district. Due to the change, the school district was no longer supervised by the County Superintendent and the County Board. The district had one high school, two junior high schools, and six elementary buildings.
In 1972 the student district enrollment was 4,983 pupils and by 1994 the student population was 8,662 students. In 1989 the school district was the 65th largest in the state and by 1993, the Hilliard School District was now the 15th largest school system in the state of Ohio! A year later, in 1994, with 8,662 students, Hilliard became the 10th largest school district in the state.
The first through fifth grades gave letter grades, A, B, C etc… and in the early 1970s the progress reports were changed to Satisfactory (S) and Unsatisfactory (U) to mark a student’s progress.
1973 was the last year for the Vocational Agriculture program. It had been a part of the high school curriculum for 53 years. It was discontinued because of the changing student needs. Hilliard did not have many farmers and the need for knowledge of horticulture dropped drastically. The building of the Central Ohio Joint Vocational School opened and met the needs of students who wanted a vocational education. This school is located in Madison County and several school districts send students there.
In 1975, Columbia Gas announced that there was an energy crisis. The school district was told that they needed to cut their usage by 40%. Thermostats were turned down to 65 degrees in the classrooms, hallways were set to 60 degrees or colder and the heat was off on the weekends. Students and staff wore extra clothing to stay warm. In 1977 the schools in the area were closed from February 4th through March 6th! Teachers provided “homebound” activities and suggestions to help the students learn during this month with no school. The Northwest News (the local paper) and the Columbus Dispatch provided pages of educational activities for students to read and complete. Educational programs were offered on television for students to watch on the local educational channel.
Summer school was offered in 1977. Students could take classes for enrichment, make up courses that they failed or take new credit so they could graduate early.
On January 12th, 1982, Scioto-Darby Local School District became the Hilliard City School District.
During the 1980s the junior high became a middle school, which housed only 7th and 8th graders. Britton Junior High became the Hilliard High School Freshman building (9th grade only). A new bus garage was built on Davidson Road where it is still located. By 1988 all but 4 of the district’s bus drivers were female. The district owned approximately 45 buses. This time also saw the beginning of the technology age with computers beginning to be purchased for students to use in the schools.
In 1987, the district planned a celebration of its 100 years of education! A Blue Ribbon Campaign was organized to get support to build a new high school. It passed in May. The new Hilliard High School would be built on the corner of Davidson and Avery road. It is now called Hilliard Davidson High School. Additions were also added to Avery, Ridgewood, and Britton. When the new Hilliard High opened in 1989, the former high school became Hilliard Middle School.
School-Age Childcare (SACC) was started in the Hilliard elementary schools during the late 1980s. Many students’ parents needed to be at work before school started and weren’t finished with work when school was over. This program offered the parents a place to safely leave their children before and after school. Adults were hired to care for the children. This program was popular.
Hilliard City Schools experienced a lot of growth in the 1990s. The district opened eight schools during this decade, four elementary schools (Hilliard Crossing, Norwich, Horizon, Darby Creek), Hilliard Station Sixth Grade, Weaver and Heritage Middle Schools, and Darby High School.
More Information & Primary Sources
The Blue and White, A History of the Public Schools of Hilliard Ohio, 1814 to 1994, c. 1994
Articles adapted by Amy Wolf, Leslie Salamony, Linda Bryant, Joyce Temple and Anita Dignan
Overview compiled and edited by Kay Bible
Hilliard City School District web site