Rosenwald Schools in Palm Beach County, Poinciana Elementary, "Boynton Colored School"
A school for black children was established before 1900 by members of the St. Paul AME Church. In 1907, the congregation petitioned the Dade County School Board for a teacher and built a small building on donated land. The school received its most significant assistance through a unique partnership involving a philanthropic businessman and a black educator.
Jewish-American philanthropist Julius Rosenwald was invited by Tuskegee Institute founder, Booker T. Washington, in 1912 to serve on their board of directors to help African American education. Segregated southern schools suffered from inadequate facilities and supplies. Their partnership initiated a school building fund in 1917 that provided seed money encouraging local collaborations between blacks and whites.
In 1925-26, the Boynton Colored School, renamed Poinciana in 1954, became the County's first Rosenwald-funded school receiving seed money for a new building. Following the 1928 hurricane, Rosenwald funds were used to rebuild or construct schools and trade shops in 11 cities throughout the County. By 1932, Rosenwald helped fund 5,357 African American schools in 15 states.
Jewish American Society for Historic Preservation, Boynton Beach Historic Resources Preservation Board Boynton Beach Historical Society