Broadmoor Nursery School was formed in October 1939, as the first preschool play center in this area with the joint efforts of the Oakland and San Leandro Recreation Departments at Broadmoor Community Church, on a non-sectarian basis.
With a two-year W.P.A supported period, financing was provided by the parents through fundraising activities and a nominal tuition fee. In 1946, the school incorporated and joined the East Bay Council of Cooperative Play Centers.
In September 1949, sponsorship was provided by the Oakland Board of Education through the assistance of the San Leandro Adult School, planning to offer the community a study of child guidance and development through adult education.
In September 1950, the location at 633 Cary Drive, San Leandro was made available, providing additional facilities and room for expansion.
When the San Leandro School District unified in 1952, the nursery school elected to remain with the San Leandro Board of Education because sponsorship and membership was mainly from San Leandro parents. Morning and afternoon sessions were offered soon afterward.
In 1961, the parent education program was developed to serve the community. A committee was formed to plan and implement a better program for the parents. One director for both morning and afternoon sessions unified and strengthened the daily and evening programs.
In 1963, Broadmoor sponsored a symposium entitled “Parent Nursery Schools – Past, Present and Future” as a parent education project and was opened to all surrounding organizations, schools and settings interested in preschool education.
Along with the emphasis on parent education, the physical setting of Broadmoor was enhanced by parental involvement. Structures were built, equipment purchased, and general maintenance was afforded by the school.
In 1973, a new playground was designed by both directors, after appointments with a professional playground designer failed to materialize. All existing equipment was used in different ways and in different locations, with new features added – a sunken sand area, swinging bridge, fireman’s pole from the tree house. It took two full weekends plus uncountable miscellaneous hours, but the cooperative spirit of the membership was apparent when the final product was completed.
1977 offered the first summer session, with nature walks, trips to the beach, etc. being a part of the curriculum.
1981 was a memorable year because it was the time half of the yard was temporarily leveled to allow heavy traffic to come in and remove a tree that had fallen across the creek. According to veteran members, this was the beginning of the upsurge in parent education, as never before had there been such an emphasis on the night classes, in comparison to the daytime activities.
In 1982, child-made snacks were instituted, which combined cooking experience with juice time. A toddler program on Monday mornings for 18-30 month olds started in January 1983. Jan Pearson was teacher. Fathers Participation Day in late April was one of the best attended even though it rained. Talented parents assisted the preschoolers in building a stage on the patio as another avenue for dramatization.
The wheels of change began turning in 1987. Broadmoor was very involved in city politics, trying to have a new building erected on the Carey Drive land. The homeowners of the surrounding land were diligent in not allowing the school to remain. Work began with the district to secure a 5 year lease on the Farrelly building located on the Roosevelt Elementary School Campus. Sally Smith was appointed director of Broadmoor in 1987.
In the 1990’s Broadmoor Preschool moved to its current location on the Roosevelt Elementary Campus. This decade also welcomed our current directors, Dale Gregory and Colleen Trujillo. Recent projects have included a new sandbox and expanded garden yard. We are proud to be celebrating 75 years (and counting) within our community.