1980s-1990s

1980

EIHS Saved

LREI students rally to stop their beloved school from closing, mostly due to financial hardship. The school was ultimately saved by its community and remained open.

1983

LREI Celebrates 50 Years

  LREI celebrates 50 years of being an independent school. Founded in 1921, LREI was a public school until the NYC Board of Education discontinued its funding. The LREI community raised funds to continue the school as an independent school..Read More

1985
Parent-Created Big Books

Parent-Created Big Books

Students read together from a parent-created big book in the 1980s. Whenever parents offer their time and talents to students, a message is embedded within. The message is: you are important, your education can be fun and exciting, we believe..Read More

1985
The Democratic Classroom

The Democratic Classroom

Cleo Banks with her students in the 1980s. It is wrong to think that in a democratic class, the teacher abdicates and contents himself with counting votes. He must always remain the leader and the guide. The chil­dren must be..Read More

1986
LREI Marches in the GMHC AIDS Walk

LREI Marches in the GMHC AIDS Walk

LREI Marches in the annual GMHC AIDS Walk. GMHC fights to end the AIDS epidemic and uplift the lives of all affected.

1988

LREI Students Perform at Carnegie Hall with Peter, Paul and Mary (’55)

LREI students sing “Light One Candle” with Peter, Paul, and Mary at their holiday concert at Carnegie Hall in December 1988. Susan Glass led the chorus, then and now. Pay close attention at 1:08 to see Middle School Principal Ana..Read More

1988
LREI Intramural Basketball

LREI Intramural Basketball

LREI launches its all-inclusive intramural basketball program for fifth and sixth graders. Through participation on athletic teams students develop their physical skills and the ability to work together toward a common purpose; they also learn to represent the school within..Read More

1989
“Hand in Hand” Benefit Concert

“Hand in Hand” Benefit Concert

Hand in Hand: A benefit concert at NYU EIsner Lubin Hall for Little Red School House and Elisabeth Irwin High School featuring Peter, Paul, and Mary (’55), John Hammond, Eric Weissberg, The Robert DeCormier Singers, and other special guests.

1989
An evening with LREI Parents Willem Dafoe (P’00), Harvey Keitel (P’97), and Richard Brown (P’94)

An evening with LREI Parents Willem Dafoe (P’00), Harvey Keitel (P’97), and Richard Brown (P’94)

On a snowy Friday, January 6th, 1989, an enthusiastic audience of students, parents, and friends of the school enjoyed and evening with LREI parents Willem Dafoe and Harvey Keitel in a discussion moderated by noted film teacher and theorist Richard..Read More

1990
Willam Kunstler (P’94/P’96) Speaks at MLK Assembly

Willam Kunstler (P’94/P’96) Speaks at MLK Assembly

Lawyer, civil rights activist, and LREI parent William Kunstler spoke to students at the annual Martin Luther King Day assembly.

1991
EIHS Saved

EIHS Saved

A second attempt to close the high school is rejected by the students, faculty, parents, and alumni. The Fund for the High School is established to raise funds earmarked specifically for the upper division.

1994
New Rooftop Playground

New Rooftop Playground

Parents and faculty work together to construct new rooftop playground

1996
Founder’s Day

Founder’s Day

The first annual Founder’s Day, established by Director Andrew Maclaren, pays tribute to Elisabeth Irwin.

1997
LREI Lesbian Gay Straight Alliance (LGSA)

LREI Lesbian Gay Straight Alliance (LGSA)

Lower School Principal Elaine Winter and parent Alice Krauss, along with other parents, found the LREI Lesbian Gay Straight Alliance (LGSA).

1997

Visibility/Love Makes a Family

Beginning in 1997, LREI hosted an annual traveling photography exhibition entitled “Love Makes A Family” — focused on the families gay and lesbian couples create. In 2010, the LREI community decided to curate its own exhibit, “Visibility: Our LGBTQ+ Community..Read More

1997
LREI Celebrates 75th Anniversary

LREI Celebrates 75th Anniversary

Click here to see the LREI 75th Anniversary booklet that includes photographs and student recollections of the school.

1998

First Founder’s Day Play

Every year, the LREI founder’s day play recounts how the parents of LREI met at an ice cream parlor and resolved to continue LREI as an independent school after the NYC Board of Education discontinued its funding as a public..Read More

1999
New Middle School Building Opens

New Middle School Building Opens

The new three-story Middle School building opens at 272 Sixth Avenue, linking the existing lower school at 196 Bleecker Street and the middle school at Nos. 200 and 202, creating space to better support the school’s progressive practice. It stands..Read More

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