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Piedmont Middle School 
(Piedmont Junior-Senior High, Piedmont Junior High School)

1927 junior high school.jpg

Oakland Wiki:

Legendary actor and director Clinton "Clint" Eastwood (b. May 31, 1930) was born in San Francisco. His family then moved a fair amount, including Oakland and Sacramento, before settling in Piedmont. After a bout of vandalism at Piedmont High School (riding his bike across a wet sports field, tearing up the grass) Eastwood was forced to attend nearby Oakland Technical High School, from which he graduated, Class of 1949.

Oakland Tribune - Sat - Apr. 21, 1928:


Proposal to Use Land for Junior High Site Opposed In Letter to Citizens.


PIEDMONT, April 21.-Opposition to the board of education's proposed $500,000 building program is voiced by members of the city council in a resolution being sent by mail to voters today.


The resolution, adopted unanimously by the council, opposes vigorously the use of a portion of Piedmont Park as a junior high school site, as proposed by the proponents of the bond issue, and declares that the city is not now prepared to assume a heavy bonded indebtedness.


The resolution opposes the board's program, with the exception of the proposed erection of additional kindergarten and elementary school buildings.


The backers of the bond issue declare that $250,000 additional must be spent if the Piedmont Park site is not used.


The council's move is said to be the outcome of recent discussions between members of the board of education, council members and civic organizations to determine the size of the bond issue, which is to be yoted on in May. The use of park lands by the schools had been opposed by the Piedmont Garden club previous to the council's action.


Oakland Tribune

"The proposed junior high school unit is intended to take the place of the present building, which will be turned over to the senior high school adjoining it."

piedmont junior high 1.jpeg

Oakland Tribune - Fri - Sep. 28, 1928:

The council called the meeting, according to members, to "feel out" the voters, who refused to pass a $500,000 bond issue for new high school and junior high school buildings last may.

Oakland Tribune - Mon - Dec. 14, 1931:

The high ninth grade students of Piedmont junior high will not receive diplomas, Jones said, as they will attend classes in the senior high division of the school next semester. Both schools are in the same building.

oakland students - Oakland_Tribune_Sun__Jan_13__1935_.jpeg
oakland students - Oakland_Tribune_Sun__Jan_13__1935_.jpeg
oakland students - Oakland_Tribune_Sun__Jan_13__1935_.jpeg

 Oakland Tribune - Sun - Jan. 13, 1935

Oakland Tribune - Tue - Nov 19, 1957:

PIEDMONT, Nov, 19-Members of the Board of Education will inspect Piedmont junior and senior high schools Tuesday to determine actual use of present facilities.

The inspection tour was scheduled last night after board members agreed that consideration should be given to a plan that would house grades 7, 8 and 9 in a junior high school and grades 10, 11 and 12 in senior high school.

At present the junior high school includes only 7th and 8th grades. Grades 9, 10, 11 and 12 are under high school administration. All grades use common facilities.

A recent survey on school housing needs completed by University of California education specialists advised that the organization move toward the 3-3 grade system, though remaining a junior-senior high school with one principal.

[...]The district now owns a possible site for a new elementary school at Hampton Road and La Salle Ave., but poor condition of Tyson Lake Dam directly above has held up plans for its development,

piedmont junior high 2.jpeg

Oakland Tribune - Thu - Dec 20, 1973:

The board of education last night accepted a low bid totalling $2,044,100 for replacement of the district's junior high school with funds to be loaned by the state.


The low bidder of eight competing firms was Branagh, Inc., of Oakland. District officials expect a new Piedmont Junior High School to be built by the end of 1974 and to be open for occupancy in February, 1975. Construction is expected to begin early next year.

The school is to be built largely on what was once the Jasaitis property down Magnolia Avenue from existing facilities which are to be torn down because they have been found not to be earthquake safe. The new school will be a three-story structure and will be on the west side of the existing junior high annex, which is planned for eventual conversion to high school use.


The state loan is to be repaid over 20 years at no more than what 17.5 cents on the property tax rate would raise each year, and if that doesn't cover all of what was loaned, the rest will be forgiven, district officials indicated.

They say 17.5 cents currently raises about $85,000. Adjustment of the tax rate to begin paying back the loan could begin in the upcoming fiscal year.

The loan program was instituted to help school districts meet the costs of replacing or renovating structures which aren't quake-safe to comply with the Field Act. It became available after Piedmont voters several times had defeated bond proposals for replacing or renovating high school, junior high and elementary school facilities.

The board is pondering the possibility of calling a new bond election, perhaps in June, to raise some of the money needed for replacing structurally unsafe high school buildings. State loan money is also figured to be available for such a project.

Oakland Tribune - Tue - Jan. 16, 1973

p143 - Architectural Record Volume 160 1976 september .jpg



Piedmont School


Prompted by what is commonly known as the Field Act—an act which outlines the minimum structural requirements for design, construction and reconstruction of all California public schools for earthquake resistance—the Piedmont Unified School District ordered examination of all its schools by local engineers, and found the junior high school unsafe. It became evident that a new school building would be more economical to construct than structurally reinforcing the existing complex.


The Field Act was passed by the state legislature on April 10, 1933 (one month after the Long Beach earthquake in which many schools suffered damage). Amended through the years, it stands in the forefront of California's attempts to set minimum requirements for public safety specifically due to earthquake hazards. In 1967, an amendment to a related act required that all schools built prior to 1933 be brought into conformance with the Field Act, thus including the Piedmont Junior High School, built in 1924. Piedmont capitalized on state assistance, so much so that the school was 100 per cent paid for with state aid.


The school is located, along with elementary and senior high school buildings, in an area adjacent to community and recreational facilities, encircled by private residences. The key to its design is simplicity. The configuration of the buildings is a V-shape, with two classroom wings (of equal dimensions: 73 by 115 feet) connected by a triangular building- all conforming to the contour of the hillside. Rather than designing a traditional classroom scheme with rooms branching off a central corrdior, the classrooms were placed in the center with a corridor on the perimeter. This permitted mechanical and electrical systems to circle the classroom core and extend into each room. This core was designed for maximum flexibility, for it was open-planned with sliding wall partitions on a 15-square-foot grid pattern. To facilitate the handicapped, a ramp connects the street with the main classroom wing and an elevator is provided.


Specific structural construction for earthquake resistance was entirely by addition of symmetrical shear walls at each corner of all buildings, to restrict horizontal movement due to the expected lateral forces of an earthquake. Extensive geological studies—specifically of the site in relation to the nearest earthquake fault—were conducted, substantiating the engineering solution in use of shear walls. It is a combination of the buildings' configuration, use of perimeter corridors, classroom grids and engineering solution for earthquake resistance that also make the design of this school extremely economical.



PIEDMONT JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL, Piedmont, California. Architect: Chester Bowles, Jr., of Marshall & Bowles. Engineers: Forell Elsesser Engineers (structural); Woodward-Clyde Consultants (soils); Marion Cerbatos & Tomasi—Ivan Tomasi, principal-in-charge (mechanical); Stanley H. Anderson (electrical). Consultants: Fitzroy-Dobbs (acoustical); Henry Chapot (cost); William H. Knight, Louis Ferry, Alton Sprague (education). Interiors/graphics/landscaping: Marshall & Bowles. Contractor: Charles J. Branagh, Inc.—Peter Rocereto, job superintendent.

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ar pic.jpg

Oakland Tribune - Mon - Jun. 2, 1975

Oakland Tribune - Fri - Jul. 21, 1978

p143 b - Architectural Record Volume 160 1976 september .jpg
p143 b - Architectural Record Volume 160 1976 september .jpg
p143 b - Architectural Record Volume 160 1976 september .jpg
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