A History of Madison Central School
Written by Jim Ford - Madison Central School Class of 1965

The below article offers a brief summary of our district's history. View a more comprehensive and detailed version of our district's history, as written by Mr. Ford.

The Madison Central School District has always had a history of academic excellence, parental/guardian involvement, and community pride.  The success of our students has proven that to be true over the past decades.

On June 19, 1812 the government of the State of New York passed legislation that each township of the state was to be divided into common school districts.  This was quickly done in the Town of Madison and the Town of Augusta.  These one-room schools were spaced throughout each township with the idea that no student would have to walk an excessive distance to school.

The basics of Reading, ‘riting, and ‘rithmatic were taught along with Respect and Responsibility.  These were the famous five R’s.  The success of the one-room schools cannot be overlooked.  Students looked back to their education in these schools with fond memories.

Students had jobs at school such as hauling drinking water, starting the fire in the stove, and cleaning the school building.  Until 1900 teachers were paid as little as $6.00 per week and often stayed in the homes of the students on a rotating basis.

In the 1870’s, Union Schools were built in Madison and Knoxboro.  These buildings had multiple rooms and the schools offered more subjects.  Also, you could now graduate with a Regents diploma.

The 1920’s and 30’s saw a push from the state to consolidate the rural one-room schools into central school districts.  Voters in the Madison area followed this trend and built the original portion of our current school.  The school opened in 1932 and had a lower and an upper floor.

The first addition to the our main building in 1939 meant the closing of the Madison Union School building, as well as those of Madison Center and Bouckville.  The years 1945-1947 saw the addition of districts from the Knoxboro-Augusta area.  In 1948 the elementary school in Knoxboro was built.

Further additions to the school occurred in 1959, 1988, 2001, and 2015.  And, as with all school buildings, renovations have often been a necessity.  The voters have been very generous in assuring that we have a safe and up-to-date educational facility.

We encourage you to stop and take a look at our present school building.  We think that you will be pleased.