From a Class of One to 640
Aunt Alma stopped in one day at school. A former teacher at Popkins, she picked me up to take me to the huge auction held when the Bolgos Dairy closed. Today, the farm's Plymouth Rd. frontage is shared by Cleary University, Big Boy, and the Red Roof Inn. Our little school district was annexed to the Ann Arbor Public Schools in 1956. It was quite a shock for me to leave thirty children at Popkins country school and ride the bus into town to attend Tappan Junior High. There were several hundred students there, and it took me quite a frustrating while to find where all of my classes were located. I would go on to graduate from Ann Arbor High School (now Pioneer High) in 1962. It was a whopping big class of 640. So I went from being the only student in my class to just one of 640.
The little red brick schoolhouse is still standing on the corner, but the last time I looked in the windows there was a tree growing up through the dirt floor. And of course there were no children outside at recess, running, laughing, yelling, and playing "Annie I Over."
MAV Development looked at restoring the school during planning for the Earhart Corporate Center at Plymouth and US-23 but sold the property to the Kojaian Companies before any work was done. According to Jones Lang LaSalle broker Neal Warling, Kojaian stabilized the building with an interior steel frame, but "it was going to be so expensive to build out that the Kojaians just didn't want to bother with it."