In July 1884, the Forest Grove School was established by order of the Collin County Commissioner’s Court. The Forest Grove School was near where the Forest Grove Church now stands.
A third school, the Lick Springs School, was established at an early date on
the north side of Sloan Creek, east of what is now Highway FM 1378 near the
Walkins Property, north of the present Lovejoy School.
On July 2, 1917, the Lovejoy Common School District, Number 32, was established with the consolidation of the Forest Grove and Lick Springs schools. The present wood frame "red schoolhouse" is the original building, with several re-modelings. The Lucas School was still active.
For a few Allen citizens, the name Hog Waller brings back
some cherished childhood memories. Actually, Hog Waller was the name
affectionately given to the old
The school teacher in those days actually lived in the school building, the living area was partitioned off from the classroom area. Kathryn Alexander was the teacher in 1924 and 1925. She and her father lived in the building’s partitioned area.
The county superintendent who oversaw all of the smaller schools in the county was Professor Smith. When he visited, everyone was on his or her best behavior, including the teacher.
With limited resources the smaller schools would occasionally run out of money and have to close down for awhile. The children were from farm families and these schools gave them the basics of an education until they could attend larger schools. Many children moved from one small district to another as their families moved with the seasons to farm for large landowners. Therefore, the schools would see quite a bit of change from year to year. The children also were often required to miss school to help with the harvest and to perform other farming activities. The county system gave them a certain amount of uniformity in their curriculum so they would not be lost when they entered another school.
L.C. “Big Daddy” Summers was instrumental in helping the Allen community preserve her school during a particularly severe time for the school district. L.C. traveled to Austin Legislature in an attempt to save the struggling school from being consolidated with one of the larger county schools. He also used the McKinney radio station as a forum from which to defend the small school. Thankfully, through the efforts of Allen residents, the Allen Independent School District still exists, and exists as one of the best districts in the state.
The school was named for Mrs. J.L. Lovejoy, and active clubwoman of the day. She took an interest in the school district, donated books to its library, and left the school $1,000. Because of her interest in the school, the School Board named the school in her honor.
On April 27, 1958, a Sunday afternoon, disaster struck Lovejoy in the form of a tornado, blowing off the roof and causing much damage from wind, rain, and hail. Some thought the school was done for. But the school had become much more than just a school. It had become the true community center. Through the determination of the trustees and the community, the building was rebuilt to better condition than before. Indoor restrooms were added for the first time.
In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, the number of children in many of the rural schools diminished to such an extent that many had to close their doors. The Lucas School was a victim of low enrollment, closing its doors in 1958. Meanwhile, Lovejoy was also in danger of closing, with its enrollment fluctuating around 30 students with two teachers for grades 1 through 6. In 1963, the "dormant" Lucas School consolidated with Lovejoy, increasing the Lovejoy Common School District to 17 square miles in size.
Mrs. Billy McDonald, who came to Lovejoy in 1950, instructed students in grades 1 through 6. The other teacher, Mrs. Estelle Spurgin, was also Lovejoy’s principal and served in that capacity until her death on November 13, 1972. Mrs. McDonald continued as a member of the staff until her retirement at the end of the 1980-81 school year.