The first public school in Kearny was built in 1870 on the corner of Schuyler Avenue and Bergen Avenue. It consisted of one room.
In 1880, Public School No. 2 was built at the corner of Kearny and Johnston Avenues. It was re-named Nathan Hale School in 1919.
In 1885 the one-room schoolhouse on Schuyler and Bergen Avenues was demolished and a newer, larger building was constructed on the same site, named Public School No. 1, and in 1919, renamed Franklin School. A new Public School No. 2 was built in 1914, at the corner of Woodland Avenue and Belgrove Drive. This was later renamed Washington School. Nathan Hale was modernized and continued to function until it was demolished in 1954.
In 1879, Public School No. 3, renamed Lincoln School in 1919, was built at the corner of Midland and Kearny Avenues. The original Lincoln School building was added to in 1920, and then demolished in 1965 to make way for the current set of school buildings which stand on the site today.
In 1894, the first High School in Kearny was built at the corner of Halstead Street and Kearny Avenue. When the present High School on Devon Street was built in 1923, this High School was re-named Public School No. 4, or the Clara Barton School. Clara Barton was demolished in 1932, and its bricks used to construct part of the present Kearny High School stadium wall.
Also in 1894, Public School No. 5, renamed Roosevelt School in 1919, was built at the corners of Kearny and Stewart Avenues. The original building was demolished in 1936 and rebuilt, where it still stands.
In 1901, Public School No. 6, or Garfield School, was built at the corner of Halstead Street and Belgrove Drive. Additions were made in 1912 and 1929.
In 1903, Public School No. 7, later called Emerson School, was built at the corner of Schuyler Avenue and Spruce Street. The Emerson School building was vacated in 1965 when Lincoln School was rebuilt, and was later demolished. The Spruce Terrace senior housing building stands on the site today.
Public School No. 8 was later called McKinley School.
In 1923, the present Kearny High School was built on Devon Street between King Street and Garfield Street, replacing the old High School on Kearny Avenue. An addition was made in the late 1960's.
In 1926, Public School No. 9, later called Schuyler School was built on Forest Street.
In 1960, a new, larger Franklin School was built on Davis Avenue, near Bergen Avenue, and the old PS #1 building was sold to Our Lady of Sorrows Church. Our Lady of Sorrows School functioned until it was turned into a Mt. Carmel Guild School in the 1980's. The Pathways to Independence organization occupies the building today.
1870 - One-room schoolhouse (PS #1) built. 1879 - PS #2 built PS #3 built 1885 - PS #1, demolished and rebuilt 1894 - First High School (PS #4) built PS #5 built 1901 - PS #6 built 1903 - PS #7 built 1909-1925 PS #8, or McKinley School built 1912 - Addition made to PS #6 1916 - Addition made to PS #7 1919 - PS #1 renamed Franklin School PS #2 renamed Nathan Hale School PS #3 renamed Lincoln School PS #5 renamed Roosevelt School PS #6 renamed Garfield School PS #7 renamed Emerson School 1920 - Addition made to Lincoln School. 1922 - New Kearny High School Built Old High School renamed Clara Barton School (PS #4) 1926 - Schuyler School (PS #9) built 1929 - Addition made to Garfield School (PS #6) 1932 - Clara Barton School demolished 1936 - Roosevelt School (PS #5) demolished and rebuilt 1954 - Nathan Hale School (PS #2) demolished 1960 - New Franklin School built PS #1 building sold to Our Lady of Sorrows Church 1965 - Lincoln School (PS #3) demolished and rebuilt Emerson School (PS #7) demolished 1960's - Addition made to Kearny High School