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School History


  • 3604 Metropolitan (North side of Metropolitan Ave. from 36th to 37th Streets, City of Argentine)
  • 38th & Metropolitan
  • 1912 City Directory:  38th sw corner Metropolitan Ave., Margaret Cathcart, principal

Named for Dr. Henry Norton Stanley (American explorer, who located Dr. David Livingstone in Africa)

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

“The Stanley Grade School was built in 1889 on land purchased from the legal guardian of George Washington. Washington was the son of a Shawnee Indian named White Feather. The original school was called the Gibbs and Payne School and consisted of four rooms. Gibbs and Payne were land developers and prominent early citizens of Argentine and the school was located in the old Gibbs and Payne Addition of Argentine. This structure burned on September 5, 1912. Submitted by Edwin D. Shutt II.”


1888: March. Ground purchased from Gibbs and Payne. Previously owned by guardian of George Washington, son of Mary White Feather, a Shawnee Indian. Date sometimes given as 1889. Probable location was 38th and Metropolitan. Was a four-room brick building, with three teachers for eight grades. School was part of District No. 41. H J Smith was the first principal. The first board was Thomas J Payne, C T Frisbie, and William Hanifin.

1896: Stanley became part of Argentine system.

May 7. Building deeded to city of Argentine.

1903-04: Address listed as corner of Thirteenth Street and Metropolitan

1904: September 21. Room made in hallway to relieve congestion.

1907: October 11. Fire caused by boy throwing a match in a hole in the floor.

1910: Taken in KCKs school district when Argentine annexed.

1911: October. First PTA. Mrs. Harry Davis, first president.

1912: September 5. Old Stanley burned. Cause unknown. Erected two portables for smaller pupils. Some sent to one-room school at 37th and Powell, others to Emerson and Franklin.

1913: January 28. Site for new building bought from Henry and Henrietta Boeke.

1909-1925 – Rose/Peterson, Architects – Much sparer in overall design are ten primary and secondary school constructed to meet the demands of a growing population. The use of materials (brick and terra-cotta), frequent application of Classical detailing, and overall plan (which features a two-story rectangular block, three bays wide), are treated similarly in all of these schools. Differing from late nineteenth and early twentieth century design, these schools were planned to provide more light and circulation for the students and staff: Stanley (1913), Whittier II (1919-20), Chelsea II (1921-23), Roosevelt (1922), McKinley, Louisa M. Alcott, and Mark Twain (1922-1924), Major Hudson (1923-24), and Central III (1924) elementary schools and Turner High School, built in 1916-17. The elementary schools were also designed in such a way that they could, if need be, be built in stages, responding to population increases within their service areas.

1915: Probable date of construction. Had ten rooms with eight grades and teachers. Miss Margaret Cathcart, first principal. No date given for change of name. Probably named Stanley for Sir Henry Morton Stanley, Anglo-American explorer.

1915 – “Mexican students attended either the Fiske or Ingalls School in Armourdale; Emerson and Stanley schools in Argentine; or Catholic schools such as St. John the Evangelist, in the period after 1915 and before the fall of 1923.  (The Education of Mexican-Americans in Kansas City, Kansas , 1916-1951, Robert Martin Cleary, 2002, Book found in the KCMO PUblic Library)

1919: When the old pest house in Quindaro was no longer usedfor smallpox patients, plans were made to sell it. A tuberculosis sanitarium and an isolation hospital for flu victims were proposed. The Chamber of Commerce offered to help in a fight against influenza, which threatened to flare up again. Diphtheria cards still warned of illness in a home.  Stanley had fourteen cases and two deaths in November, and other schools reported cases.   (Pesthouse:  A hospital where people suffering from infectious disease were once confined and sometimes treated..)

1923: Second story added.

1951 – Argentine High School was opened to accommodate refugees from the Argentine area at 2:00 a.m. July 13.  Stanley School was opened to accommodate those in the western part of Argentine.

1960: January. Plans for expansion on east. 15-foot variance approved.

1961: Kindergarten room, combination Kindergarten and classrooms, library and activity rooms.

1990: Received $750,000, three-year grant from RJR Nabisco Foundation to become a Next Century School. Students to attend 205 days (compared to 180). Teachers on duty 226 days (compared to 187). Renamed New Stanley.

2003: New Stanley remains year-round school.

2019:  New Stanley was selected  and recognized as an ESEA National Distinguished School

2020: New Stanley returned to the district wide calendar and schedule for the 2020-21 SY