J.E. Benson Public School

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J.E. Benson Public School (formerly Wyandotte Street School) was an elementary school in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. J.E. Benson School is administered by the Greater Essex County District School Board, which also services sixty-one other elementary schools located in Windsor, Ontario and Essex County, Ontario.


Construction began in 1914,[1] just before the outbreak of the First World War; the school opened in April 1915.[1] Originally named Wyandotte Street School, the building contained twelve classrooms and a Manual Training Room.[1] Ten of the rooms were in use by 1916, and by 1917 the school was in full use.[1] J.E. Benson’s, or at the time Wyandotte Street School’s, first principal was Mr. Fred Snider[2] and the first recorded attendance was 95 students.[1]


In 1921–1922, Sandwich Township was annexed by the city of Windsor;[2] this included a three-room school that now fell under the jurisdiction of the Wyandotte Street School. The combination of students from Sandwich Township and the rapid population growth being experienced by the city from the post-war twenties, made it necessary for the School Board to provide additional rooms and accordingly built a fifteen-room addition. The new edition officially opened at noon, Thursday December 20, 1923,[3] the elementary school re-opened as a full Rotary School hosting 900 pupils "making it the largest institution of its kind in Western Ontario"[3] at the time.

Re-naming: becoming J.E. Benson School[edit]

On August 12, 1936, at the age of 63 Inspector John Edward Benson died from a heart attack.[4] The Board of education decided to honour Mr. Benson by renaming Wyandotte Street School, giving it its current name, J.E. Benson School. A commemorative plaque can be seen hung in the hallway to the Auditorium.

J. E. Benson[edit]

J. E. Benson was the son of James Benson and Angeline Parliament;[4] he was a resident of Roblin’s Mills, Prince Edward County. Benson taught in public schools around Prince Edward County until he became the inspector for public schools in Prince Edward County, after his graduation from Queen’s University.[4] Inspector Benson was first appointed to His Windsor position on December 16, 1919 ; he started his duties February 1, 1920.[4] Benson was the first educationalist to bring the rotary system to Canadian schools;[5] he was a trusted school inspector for twenty five years. Inspector Benson died from a heart attack on August 12th1936 after returning to his summer home, his usual custom following the closing of schools for the summer;[4] he "looked in good health" when he retired for the night but suffered from a heart attack and died before help arrived.[4]


The current mascot for J.E. Benson Public School is the Bobcat; they are known as "The Benson Bobcats".


Year Principal
1915–1920 Mr. Fred Snider
1920–1945 Mr. Thomas W. Draper
1945–1959 Mr. Peter McCallum
1959–1960 Mr. Stuart Tuck
1960–1963 Mr. Harvey Brown
1963–1969 Mr. Harold Kidd
1969–1971 Mr. Arthur Kidd
1971–1979 Mr. Robert C. McIntosh
1979–1988 Mr. George Sutton
1988–1990 Mr. Ken Agnus
1990–1998 Mr. Wayne French


List of staff: 2012–13[edit]

Grade Teacher
Principal Mrs. Oshar
Vice-Principal Mrs. Muzzin
Secretary Mrs. Sandrin
JK/SK Ms. Bonato
Mrs. Mialkowski / Mrs. Adjin
JK/SK Mrs. Masotti
Mrs. Ryan
JK/SK Mrs. Pickersgill
Mrs. Merlo
Grade 1 Mrs. Crowder
Grade 1/2 Mrs. Gelinas
Grade 1/2 Ms. Moffatt
Grade 2/3 Mrs. Zaidan / Mrs. Greer
Grade 3 Mrs. Li-Dickinson
Grade 4 Mr. McGinnis
Grade 4/5 Mr. Jenkins
Grade 5/6 Mrs. Vidamour
Grade 5/6 Mr. Malmberg
Grade 7/8 Miss Colebrook
Grade 7/8 Mr. Kennedy
S.E.R.R. Miss Landry
S.E.R.R. Mrs. Harrison
LST Mrs. Laberi
Music Mr. Williamson
FSL Mme. Kazoun
FSL Mme. Gigliotti / Mme. Atris


  1. ^ a b c d e Windsor: Windsor’s Public Schools, "History of J. E. Benson School," Windsor Public Library 1972. Print.
  2. ^ a b Benson 75th Anniversary 1915-1990, Benson Public Library. (City of Windsor Executive Office, 1990)
  3. ^ a b "Western Ontario’s Largest School Opened", Windsor Star Dec. 20, 1923, pg. 12
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Inspector J. E. Benson", Windsor Star Aug.12, 1936 pg. 1
  5. ^ "J. E. Benson Sparkled New Era in Education", Windsor Star, Sept. 4, 1954
  6. ^ List compiled from Windsor’s Public schools until Principal McIntosh then the rest of the list is from Benson 75th Anniversary 1915-1990

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°18′30″N 83°03′16″W / 42.30832°N 83.05455°W / 42.30832; -83.05455