The Ross School

Early Nashville School With Modern Impact

One of the oldest still-standing school buildings in East Nashville

The Ross Elementary School was erected in 1907 and was named for Marcus M. Ross. Ross was a teacher and principal for different Nashville city schools. Ross’ architecture is that of a typical elementary school building for the time in which it was built: rectangularly framed, two stories high, built with beige brick, and topped with a hipped roof and dormer at the center facade. The school’s main entrance is a half flight up from the grade and is underneath a rusticated stone arch. There are carved stone panels in the entrance bay with the name and date of the school’s founding. In 1933, the Ross School suffered damage from a tornado.

In 1988, Metro Nashville Public Schools deemed the old building too small for the number of students and constructed a new Ross School on McFerrin Avenue at the site of the old East High School football field. In 1991, the building was repurposed as Ross Head Start, a day care center for 190 children. Today, the school is occupied by the Nashville Classical Charter School, which renovated the interior in 2015 and 2016. The school now teaches children foreign languages and music for free.