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Encyclopedia > Elgin Academy, Illinois
Sign in front of "Sears Gallery."
Sign in front of "Sears Gallery."
Elgin Academy's "Old Main" building.
Elgin Academy's "Old Main" building.

Elgin Academy, founded in 1839, is an independent, coed, college-preparatory day school with 425 students enrolled in preschool through twelfth grade during the 2004-05 school year. The school occupies a 15 acre (61,000 m²) campus 35 miles (55 km) northwest of Chicago in the Historic District of the city of Elgin, Illinois. The current Head of School is Dr. John Cooper (2000-Present). Image File history File links Ea_sign. ... Image File history File links Ea_sign. ... Image File history File links ElginAcademyc1910. ... Image File history File links ElginAcademyc1910. ... Incorporated City in 1854. ...

Elgin Academy offers a classical, academic, college-preparatory curriculum suitable for students seeking maximum challenge and maximum support. Small classes are key to facilitating instruction in which teachers are able to give close attention to each student's personal development. The Academy is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools and is accredited by both the Independent Schools Association of the Central States and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools; it is recognized by the Illinois Non-Public Schools Recognition Program. The National Association of Independent Schools is a US-based organization for independent schools. ... The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA) is one of six regional accreditation organizations recognized by the United States Department of Education. ...

The school is the oldest coeducational, non-sectarian such school west of the Allegheny Mountains. Coeducation is the integrated education of men and women. ... A parochial school (or faith school) is a type of private school which engages in religious education in addition to conventional education. ... The Allegheny Mountains are a part of the Appalachian mountain range located in the eastern United States. ...

It was established by charter of the Illinois General Assembly in 1839 as a private school. The Illinois General Assembly convenes at the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield. ... 1839 was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... Private schools, or independent schools, are schools not administered by local or national government, which retain the right to select their student body and are funded in whole or in part by charging their students tuition rather than with public (state) funds. ...

The Academy's original building, "Old Main", was constructed in 1856 by J. Quigley of Buffalo, New York in the Greek Revival style. It is now on the United States' National Register of Historic Places and museum of the Elgin Area Historical Society. 1856 was a leap year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... Aerial view of downtown Buffalo, New York Buffalo is an American city in western New York. ... Personal residence of Catherine the Great Greek Revival was a style of classical architecture which became fashionable in Europe in the 18th century, and in the United Kingdom and United States in the early 19th century. ... The National Register of Historic Places is the USAs official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects worthy of preservation. ...

Its curriculum began as a classical education. Classical education as understood and taught in the middle ages of western civilization is roughly based on the ancient Greek concept of Paideia. ...

Principal Nathaniel C. Sears expanded it from a local-area school to a boarding school with the construction of its Sears Hall. Edwards Hall was built in 1969. A boarding school is a self-contained educational total institution where students not only study but where some or all students may live. ...

The school's classrooms are now mainly housed in three buildings:

Other buildings on campus include: Main article: Secondary education in Japan The Japanese word for a high school is kōtōgakkō (高等学校; literally high school), or kōkō (高校) in short. ... Middle school, (Intermediate/Junior high school) covers a period of education that straddles primary education and secondary education, serving as a bridge between the two. ... Primary or elementary education is the first years of formal, structured education that occurs during childhood. ...

  • Sears Gallery (theater)
  • Gymnasium
  • Raymond House (business office)
  • Penney House (admissions and alumni relations offices)

However, some classes are taught in the nearby Old Main.

The Elgin Academy also owns a small sports field complex, approximately 1/2 mile away from the main campus. The fields include the following:

  • Field house
  • 4 tennis courts
  • Field Hockey field
  • Soccer field
  • 1/5 mile dirt track

Old Main

The original building that the school was housed in. When expansion of the school began EA attempted to give the building to Elgin for it's historical society. Due to some minute law, the building couldn't be given as a gift. Instead, the school sold it to the city for $1.

Today the building is primarily used as the museum for the Elgin Area Historical Society. However, there is one room set aside for use as a regular classroom by the school, commonly referred to as the "Museum Room" by students.


It is said that there is a tunnel that runs underneath the school. Old, sealed trapdoors on some of the sidewalks seem to attest to the validity of this legend. Some say the tunnels were used for the underground railroad, other that it was a fallout shelter during the Cold War. It is known that all entrances to the tunnels are seemingly sealed or destroyed, obviously they woudln't be a safe place for students to be roaming.

External links

  • Elgin Academy, Official website



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