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South Beaver School

The Flagstaff School Board opened South Beaver Elementary School in 1936. The Public Works Administration, a federal relief program created during the Depression, built the Malpais-covered school. South Beaver, a segregated school, served the Southside's Hispanic community while the nearby Dunbar Elementary was for African Americans.

Sturgeon Cromer, superintendent of Flagstaff schools, and Dunbar Principal Wilson Riles desegregated Flagstaff schools in 1952. This occurred two years before the landmark court case Brown v. Board of Education.

The Flagstaff Unified School District operated South Beaver as its first magnet program offering a specialized curriculum to its diverse student body before closing the school in 2010 as a budget saving measure. Northern Arizona University purchased the building in 2015 and uses it for the Intensive English Program.

An interview wth Mike Cromer discussing his time as a teacher at South Beaver Elementary School. Call number: NAU.OH.97.68.59A