Norman School in KCMO School District on the market

The Vacated Norman School on Southwest Trafficway in Kansas City, MO

This is the old Norman School, I assume a leftover from the Kansas City Missouri School District. The building is listed by a realtor. Whenever I’m zipping between my midtown home and downtown I often notice this building to the right as you’re going north on Southwest Trafficway about midway through 39th to 31st.

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21 replies
  1. SomeGuy
    SomeGuy says:

    The District actually sold this building about two years ago. So it is now owned by a private developer that doesn’t seem to be doing much with it.

    Reply
  2. ghost
    ghost says:

    I went to grade school there and my mom taught there for several years while I was there, then the school district moved her office into that building before she retired after 49 yrs. There is a lot of history inside that building. The hardwood floors, doors, windows, ect. are all real. It was a nice place to visit after becoming an adult and my, grown kids loved it when we returned to see it. Lots of memories there.

    Reply
    • ephoto
      ephoto says:

      I also have fond memories of my k-4 teachers and classes there. I lived almost across the street so going to school was easy and I spent lots of time on the playground equipment in the summer.

      Reply
      • Marcia
        Marcia says:

        I attended grades K-6 at Norman and have many vivid memories of my years there. The beautiful trees in the fall, that silly maypole dance and playing kickball and baseball during recess. I often wish we would have had yearbooks like grade schools do now. Good times.

        Reply
  3. just commenting
    just commenting says:

    I utilized the teacher resources at the Norman Center. It is a beautiful building on the inside. I hope the owner will find a way to preserve the building in some form or fashion. I hope they don’t do the Kay Barnes approach – tear down and level the groud for a parking lot or other non-essential type of structure.

    Reply
  4. Ryland Foster
    Ryland Foster says:

    It is so sad to see this school in the current shape it is in. It is such a beautiful old structure and I hope it gets a restoration and permanently preserved. There are so many wonderful memories I have of attending this school in the late 1960’s-mid 1970’s. They can tear the old building down but never tear down our memories. I only hope the current owner considers the historical importance of this building to the Valentine Neighborhood and works to preserve it.

    Reply
  5. jon
    jon says:

    I would love to get a group of people together to form an llc and lease to own the building and use it 4 all forms of artists from photographers sculptors painters musicians videographers editors have certain rooms to belong to the princible company owners and then we lease out the other spaces as studio space enlarger common rooms in all subviews says gallery spaces for shows up any kind of presentations what do you say?

    Reply
    • Nat
      Nat says:

      I had a similar idea. Only I wanted to turn it into a school for the arts. I was thinking of making a school to rival The Curtis Institue of Music and Juilliard. It would be a great place to make it because it’s a very artsy area and it’s close to the Kauffman Center of Performing Arts and The Atkins Museum of Art. It could be a sanctuary for up and coming musicians, artist, writers, dancers, actors,the list could go on and on.

      Reply
      • Alex
        Alex says:

        I was driving by today and called on the for sale sign at the norman school because architecture of this nature when abandoned fascinates me. I also have interest in turning old grand structures into artist havens, and I have been working on just such a project in an old church building at 9th and Harrison. The Arts Asylum (we call it) is a new visual and performing arts center in downtown, and I am looking for individuals that share in that sort of dream to take this vision to the next level. If you still have interest in an Arts Center, or an Arts School, I would love to meet with you. Please contact me at FDSA.Alex@gmail.com.
        Sorry if this doesn’t belong on this board. but I just was thrilled to hear of 2 people that have a similar dream to mine and wanted to reach out.

        Reply
  6. Jack Bender
    Jack Bender says:

    I lived in Penn Valley when there was Veteran’s Housing located there and went to Norman Grade School from Kindergarten through the first two months of 4th grade. I have many memories of Norman including some wonderful teachers. I particularly remember Mrs. Joy and Mrs. Vernon and if I thought about if for awhile I would probably remember he rest too. Kindergarten was in a large room across from the office which was up a stairway from the main floor. The kindergarten room was in a semi-circular shape as I recall and it was very large. We had rugs that we took naps on. I also recall being in a play in that room. The play was called “For Whom the Bell Tolls”. I also took speech therapy at Norman and it must have done some good as I became a lawyer.
    Christmas was a special event every year as a large Christmas tree was placed in the area in front of the entrance to the Kindergarten room. It was very large it seemed, perhaps 20 foot tall. If others have memories re Christmas at Norman I would like to hear about it.
    All room had clothes closets that were separate from the main class room. We had the old row seats that were attached to each other so there was no scooting of seats around. Dodge ball was a favorite recess activity as was kick ball. I also remember the news paper drives and grease drives. Grease was collected to help in the war effort during the Korean War. That area on the grounds just to the north of the street running south of the school was piled high with newspapers and grease.
    I thin the principals name was Creek when I was there and I recall another teacher named Minor. ROTC had an area in one part of the building and after the Korean War they gave away helmets to the students. To get a helmet your name had to be drawn in a drawing. I really wanted that helmet with the bright colors and I didn’t even get a regular green one but one of my classmates a girl was kind enough to give me hers.
    As I recall the class rooms were large. Another memory I have is of the movies they use to show us and I particularly remember one about dental care and how important it was to brush your teeth regularly and to see the dentist for dental cleaning. I also recall climbing a rope in gym and being hit in the head by a baseball bat. Yes, we had a very large playground area with monkey bars and swings and teeter totters.
    I went back once in the 70s and the building was still in pretty good shape but the rooms seemed smaller than I recalled.

    Reply
    • Marcia
      Marcia says:

      Jack, isn’t it strange how we can attend the same school but have completely different memories? I attended Norman from K-6, starting about 1963. I can picture the school in my mind but the one thing that really stands out in my mind are the beautiful hardwood floors. I also remember the coatrooms, small, skinny rooms where we kept our coats/boots/lunchboxes during the day. Norman was a beautiful school which a real sense of community.

      Reply
  7. Michael Schuler
    Michael Schuler says:

    Joseph Norman was my great, great, great grandfather. This is a great picture of the school. I’m assuming it is HDR?

    Reply
  8. Marcia
    Marcia says:

    When I attended Norman the principal was Donna Burch. It would have been about 1962-1969. My fourth grade teacher was Mrs. Lance and for fifth grade Mrs. Mullane. Not sure of the spelling, but she had bright red hair and she hated me. I’m sure she had her reasons. Sixth grade was Miss Horton. She was especially fun because she’d play with us at recess. I remember the coat rooms next to the classrooms too because I seem to remember spending some time there, as in “Go to the coat room and think about what you’ve done!” Whenever we drive past on SW Blvd., I always point out Norman to whoever I’m with at the time (kids, husband, friends).

    Reply
    • Elizabeth Honeycutt
      Elizabeth Honeycutt says:

      Hi Marcia,
      You must have been there a few years before before I went there. My sister Kathy had Mrs. Lance for 4th and 5th grade. I had Mrs. Goldberg for 3rd and 4th grade but I can’t remember the years. I went there from Kindergarten to 4th grade then we transferred to Redemptorist. I remember the hallways with the shiny floors and the big staircase right by Ms. Burch’s office. I remember having music lessons in the big room that Jack was talking about. It’s funny that you mention the coat rooms because we were just talking about them this morning. How about the lunch room lady, I don’t remember her name but she would always help me peel my oranges and the people that brought their lunches sat in that other section off the main lunch room. The people that ordered hot lunches sat in the main lunch room. We had to go downstairs to the basement to use the restrooms. Memories!

      Reply
      • Sandee Mitchell
        Sandee Mitchell says:

        I remember all that. My favorite teacher was Mrs Elmore. I remember Ms. Burch. I also transferred to Redemptorist. I miss those times, it goes so fast.

        Reply
        • Elizabeth Honeycutt
          Elizabeth Honeycutt says:

          Sandee,
          Did you hang around with Suzie Smith,Katrina Hall and a girl named Liz (I can’t remember her last name.)

          Reply
  9. Roxana Ica Suteu
    Roxana Ica Suteu says:

    I would love to own this beautiful historical property,and to fix it up and use it for myself as my personal property,because this old school it’s so beautiful,a truly precious historical building,that deserve a second chance to be fixed up,and used for something,not to be left to decay more than already is decaying.Shame that this historical building its left abandoned and nobody cares about it.And regarding about the story of the building I wonder is this building really haunted?.

    Reply
  10. Rick Baker
    Rick Baker says:

    I will always remember Norman Grade School, I lived with my Grandmother on 3426 penn, when I attented Norman. The house is no longer there. But the school will always be there in my mind, and thoughts and memories. If you attented Norman in the early 60’we might know each other. I will never forget one of my teacher her name was Ms> White. She was so understanding with her students. Who owns the building or property now. Would love to go back inside,,,I remember going to the basement for restroom breaks, the big stairs, and the room, where we would sing….Love this place a lot…..Love always……

    Reply

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