Hindley School is one of five public elementary schools in Darien, Connecticut, serving about 550 pupils from kindergarten through Grade 5. A part of Darien Public Schools, Hindley sits at 10 Nearwater Lane (at the intersection of Nearwater Lane and the Boston Post Road) in the Noroton section of Darien. Every year, Hindley hosts a town fair called the Hindley Happening.
Hindley's school day lasts from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The Hindley Husky is the official mascot and appears on the mural at the schools cafeteria. Parents of Hindley students have set up a weekly emailed newsletter dubbed "The WIRE", which describes upcoming events.
Hindley has a school orchestra, band and chorus which together give a holiday concert each December. For decades also the band chourus and orchestra perform in a spring concert where in 2011 the advanced orchestra gave one of the best Hindley performances ever. The Hindley Happening, a small fair, has been held each spring on the school grounds.
The school district's Early Learning Program (ELP), a special education program for preschool children as young as three years old, is run from classrooms at Hindley. The program needed a new classroom as of late 2007, when the town Board of Education began considering whether or not to move the ELP to the new Tokeneke School, where a new school building provides more space. Splitting up the program between Hindley and Tokeneke was another idea under consideration. Any move, if it happened, would likely take place in the summer of 2008, district officials said.
The school has a Kids Care Club. In December 2007, the club helped in a school-wide community service project to donate more than 100 "Holiday Hope Chests" to foster children served by the state Department of Children and Families in Bridgeport. The "chests" are shoe boxes filled with hats, gloves, small toiletries, crafts, books and the like for teenagers and pre-teens.
Hindley stands on historic ground. Nearby, at the corner of Noroton Avenue and the Boston Post Road, a skirmish during the American Revolution between local patriots and raiding Tories based on Long Island resulted in the deaths of several patriots, who were ambushed at the stone walls which still exist at the corner. Just to the east, across the street from the Noroton Presbyterian Church, about where the school basketball courts are located, a "Union Church" was set up in the early 19th century. The church provided services for people of various denominations other than the official Congregational Church and was set up to promote religious freedom. Neighborhood schools have existed in the Noroton neighborhood since 1703, when a school was built on the same corner but across Nearwater Lane from Hindley.
Hindley School was built in the late 1940s to replace a 1908 building on the same tract of land. An unexpected surge in the town's school population persuaded the Board of Education to keep the old building, then called "Hindley Annex", which remained for years before it was eventually torn down.
In 2005, members of the sixth-grade Hindley "Class of 1965" organized a 40th reunion attended by 25 former students. Many of them remembered all the verses to a Hindley school song, ""This Little Hindley Light of Mine", taught to them by Frank Tonis, the principal at the time.
The Hindley School Association donated $30,000 to the school in 2006 to construct a new playground, replacing equipment that some parents considered possibly unsafe.
- Shultz, Susan, "A new home at new school? ELP might move to Tokeneke", article in The Darien Times, December 20, 2007, page 3A
- "Hindley School: Kids bring hope to needy children", no byline, The Darien Times, December 20, 2007, page 5C
- "In Search of the Past: A Self-Guided Tour of Darien" by Patricia Q. Wall, a 20-page booklet published by the Darien Historical Society in 1986
- Barnard, Patrick, "Kessel captures Darien's recent history", news article in The Darien Times, p C1, April 7, 2005
- "Hindley Class of '65 reunites", no byline, article in The Darien Times, August 25, 2005
- Shultz, Susan, "Hindley, Royle elementary schools getting gifts", The D Darien Times, June 1, 2006, accessed via NewsBank Web site (www.newsbank.com) on November 15, 2007
- Hindley School Web site
- Hindley Association Web page
- Middlesex Middle School Website
- Darien High School Web Site