Erlangen ES History

Opened: 1946
Closed: 1994

Erlangen American Elementary School was one of the first elementary schools opened in Germany. It opened in 1946. Although, at the time, Erlangen was one of the major centers for the American military post war, in subsequent years, it was an armored (tank) sub-community of Nuremberg.

By the 1980s the school served dependents from the Herzo and Erlangen bases. The school was located in three buildings adjacent to the post. The complex has twenty classrooms and a library. In 1954 the principal was Ms. Bonita Brown and there were 172 students enrolled in the school.

Diedre (Dee Dee) Smalls, a student at the school from 1969 to 1972, wrote the following about the school:

Erlangen Elementary was located outside of the back gate of Ferris Barracks. I remember the bus going through the Post gates from the housing area and out the back gate to arrive at school. The school was an old, white one-story structure with lots of windows in the classrooms. The scenery would sometimes prove to be a welcomed distraction. There was a weeping willow tree right outside of the 3rd grade class window. I remember this tree so vividly because we were asked to draw it one day in class.

Our field trips to the Christkindl’s Markt in Nuremberg were fun and it was exciting to have your own "marks" to spend! The MOST memorable field trip was to the Dachau Concentration Camp. It was (literally) an "experience of a lifetime!" I have never, not even 50 years later, been able to shake the feeling I was left with at seeing the ovens and hearing the history of what took place in the Concentration Camps. I remember wondering what would happen if we were suddenly locked in and the relief I felt when we were finally outside again! I also recall class pictures being taken in the back of the school, near my weeping willow tree!

For the 1981-82 school year there were 500 pupils in grades K-6 with a staff of twenty-five teachers. The school had a counselor, reading improvement specialist, two host nation teachers, two teachers for learning disabilities, a library clerk, a music teacher and a speech therapist.

In 1984 the sixteen classrooms for the school were completely renovated. For the 1987-88 school year, the enrollment was 300 students in grades K-6. The school population remained stable until the school closed in 1994.


Information from Diedre Smalls and DOD School Information Guides

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