From raising funds for war memorials to participating in American Junior Red Cross clubs, students even in the early days of the Davis School District felt the impact of war.
Those associations with war continue today as students write letters to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, collect supplies for members of the military to distribute overseas, and watch parents and teachers deploy.
Across the county this week, schools are celebrating the veterans in their community with performances and special recognitions.
Clearfield residents will be seeing red, white and blue Friday as students at North Davis Junior High place flags around the school. For that school, the recognition has run throughout the week with assemblies, collecting supplies and writing thank-you cards.
Clearfield High School will also have a special celebration as it recognizes Lt. Col. Jay C. Hess, the founder of the JROTC at that school. Hess was a five-year POW during the Vietnam War. Several elementary schools plan flag-raising ceremonies and performances of patriotic songs. Orchard Elementary will even serve lunch to veterans in their community.
The Davis School District will also recognize those in its ranks who have served their country. Centennial event organizer Suzanne Cottrell has gathered information from more than 115 employees. She said they represent every branch of the military and have served all over the world. The veterans serve in just about every capacity in the district, from teachers to administrators, bus drivers to custodians, and computer technology specialists to maintenance technicians.
During the regular Board of Education meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, each will be awarded a Centennial pin and certificate to thank them for their service.
War has been a part of the Davis School District almost since its creation on July 17, 1911.
Following the Spanish-American War and World War I, curriculum was created to specifically focus on patriotism. It was at that time that American Junior Red Cross groups began to form. They provided community service and focused on patriotism.
As early as 1936, students petitioned the Board of Education to allow them to establish a high school ROTC program. Permission was not granted at that time, but students continued to pursue the idea until the outbreak of World War II.
Wars also caused population fluctuations in district schools. Just before World War II, the student population shifted downward. However, during the war, with defense plants being built at Hill Field -- now Hill Air Force Base -- and Clearfield, the student population began to increase.
Government representatives warned the superintendent that those defense plants were permanent structures and would bring families to the area. District leaders met with federal officials to seek financial help in building schools in the northern area of the county.
Hill Field also reduced the number of male teachers serving in the district. Before World War II, many left teaching positions to work for higher wages in the defense industry. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, male teachers became a scarcity as men under 38 were drafted into the war effort.
The shortage of male teachers forced the district to relax its policy regarding married female teachers. Previously, married women could only substitute teach. Married women whose husbands were part of the war effort were given permission to teach.
The effects of World War II were felt by Davis County for many years. In 1942, the first year federally connected students entered the district, there were 241 new students. The next year, there were 831 new students. By 1945, there were about 6,088 students attending Davis School District schools. Ten years after the war, the school population had doubled.
And that growth continues today with nearly 68,000 students being educated in Davis School District schools. The district grew by more than 1,700 students just in the last year.
While that growth may not be as affected by war as it was in 1945, some of it can still be attributed to the location of Hill Air Force Base within the county's borders.
Students also continue to feel the impact of war. Many know someone who has been deployed.
Shauna Lund is the Communication Specialist for the Davis School District. Historical information courtesy of histories written by Les Foy and Glen M. Leonard. For more about the Centennial Celebration, go to www.davis.k12.ut.us/dsd/centennial