Costner Elementary School353 Old Nc 277 Loop Rd, Dallas, NC 28034
Costner School had quite humble beginnings. About 1830, Valentine Costner donated land about one mile northeast of Antioch Lutheran Church, and the tiny school took his name. It wasn't long, though, before the school moved "across the creek" because of a lack of drinking water at the original school site. The new building was built on land donated by Valentine Costner's son, Peter Costner. The building was a one-room log structure with a wooden floor. A big fireplace was at one end. The seats were benches made of slabs of wood. Across the back of the room was the only desk. Here pupils went to write in their copy books. The Blue-Back Speller was used, and the pupils learned to "cipher" as well as to spell. During those days it was customary for the girls to clean the building, and for the boys to chop the wood and keep the fire going. It was not unusual for the boys to desert the woodpile and engage in a rabbit chase carried on by the many dogs of the community. One of Costner's first educators was John J. George in 1892. His salary was recorded as being $30.00 per month. However, the salaries seemed to decrease over the next 12 years falling at one point to only $20.00 per month. Eventually, the situations improved as the community population grew in number. Soon, a need for bigger and better teaching facilities became apparent. A union between Antioch and St. Peter's churches left the fellowship building of the latter deserted. This housed the Costner School population for another brief period beginning in 1913. Then, following a consolidation with the disbanded Jenkins School, Costner grew to a three teacher staff. The old church structure was eventually transported to Costner's present location until 1927, when it was purchased for the sum of $45.00 and removed by the buyer. In that same year, a new building was erected, and over the years, various additions were made, so that in 1954, Costner consisted of four classrooms, an auditorium, a lunchroom, a kitchen, and several small rooms that were used for different purposes. In 1974, four new classrooms, a library, and a cafeteria were built. Then in 1979, the older part of the building erected in 1927 was torn down to make room for more classrooms, bringing the total to 16 in all. Another addition in 1987 was that of a recreation and multi-purpose room. In 1998, Costner again merged with another neighborhood school. High Shoals Elementary, located about nine miles northeast of Costner, was closed to better utilize county funds. Instead of building a new school for the High Shoals area, the schools were joined, and plans were made for another addition to Costner. The merger added about a hundred new students, along with five assistants and six teachers who had previously taught at High Shoals. Seven mobile units were utilized until the construction of the new building could be completed. Along with the new building, there was quite extensive renovation of the 1979 addition. Four classrooms were renovated to house the Kindergarten classrooms, and the Media Center was changed to house a computer lab, an art room, a nurse's room, and several offices for other auxiliary services, such as Speech and Guidance. Six classrooms were also treated for asbestos removal. The new addition, which opened at the beginning of the 2000-2001 school year contained a beautiful new Media Center, a teacher's workroom and conference room along with 9 classrooms. What the future may bring to Costner is in the hands of today's children who will become tomorrow's adults. If the future may be judged by the past, Costner will continue it's contribution to the community, the state and our Nation for many years to come.