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School History

Silver City Elementary School

Location: 2515 Lawrence Avenue

Building Opened: 1971

Named for area of city it was built in: Argentine (meaning Silver in Spanish)

The new school opened as a model open classroom school. It was used as a training and test school for open concept schools to be built in 1972. The school was a prototype for all subsequent elementary schools to be constructed from the 1970 bond funds in that it was designed in an “open” concept with large instructional spaces surrounding a teachers’ work core. Its principal, Ruth Modrell, and staff were selected and assigned to test emerging trends in cooperative work between teachers and to serve as a demonstration center for faculties which would be assigned to new schools as they were brought “on stream” in 1972 and thereafter. Testing of architectural features involving the most functional teacher work areas, instruction materials center, fine arts facilities and other features were also functions of that experimental building.  Schools in KCKs in Years of Change 1962-1986, Dr. Oren L. Plucker, 1986

“Centennial History of Argentine”, Kansas City, Kansas 1880-1980
Simmons Funeral Home, Inc.

“The newest elementary school in the Argentine community is the Silver City Elementary School, located at 2515 Lawrence Avenue. It opened in 1971 and is the first “open spaced” school to be built in Kansas City, Kansas. This means it has large open spaces with semi-permanent partitions. Thus, the school can be adopted to changing enrollment and educational requirements. Also, there is a large library, soundproof rooms, and work rooms for teachers.

The Silver City Elementary School has a capacity for 250 students. The present enrollment is approximately 230 with a faculty of eight teachers and three aids. Ruth Mondrell was the school’s first principal. Students from old Franklin and from former portions of Emerson and Noble Prentis areas attend the school. Submitted by Edwin D. Shutt”

Extending from the Kaw on the west and southward in an irregular line to the hills on the south was Argentine. Silver was being mined in New Mexico and Arizona in the early 1900’s, and it was discovered that the smelting could be done more efficiently in this part of the Wyandotte area. So, the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe Railroad laid a line into this area. The name “Argentine” which means silver, explains why Argentine was known for many years as “Silver City”.

Silver City’s Mission Statement:

Striving for Excellence: In Everything We Do, Everything We Say, Every Day

Silver City’s Vision:

Reaching to become one of the Top Elementary Schools in KCKPS