History of Graves Middle School (South Whittier School)
First called Santa Gertrudes, the South Whittier School was built in 1914. The name was later changed to South Whittier because community members could not pronounce or spell Santa Gertrudes. South Whittier School District had one school for grades kindergarten through eighth grade. Mrs. Ada Young was the first teacher and librarian of the district. Also, in 1914 South Whittier organized the first P.T.A. under the leadership of Mrs. Dinder Copron.
As the district grew in population, a new facility was built on the South Whittier campus. It was built in 1928 to accommodate the 35 to 40 students in one classroom. It later graduated thirteen students in 1931. In the following years, several elementary schools were built to help with the increased enrollment and South Whittier School became solely an intermediate school during the 1950’s. After many years of academic excellence the school received a facelift.
In 2002 South Whittier Intermediate received additional new facilities and a name change. Approved by the South Whittier School Board in November 2001, the South Whittier Intermediate School was renamed Richard L. Graves Middle School in honor of its superintendent of 22 years. Richard L. Graves Middle School now houses a $7 million dollar facility that includes thirteen new classrooms, a field house (gymnasium), locker rooms, and restructured courtyards.
Today, the South Whittier School District has a variety of programs that support students and teachers. Richard L. Graves is leading the way to prepare its’ students for a brighter future as students continue on their path of achieving a higher education. The staff and faculty are committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure success for every student.