Skip To Main Content











History of Meadowlark Ridge Elementary

In 1963, a new school opened in Salina, Kansas. The school was on a block bordered by Greeley Avenue (Glen), Beechwood, Northwood, and Driftwood (Fairdale). The first enrollment was held at Glennifer Hill School as sidewalks and streets were in the process of being paved. The school was originally called Riker-Manor School, but was later officially named Meadowlark Ridge School. The school board selected that name from suggestions submitted by students and parents.

Meadowlark was built in the east portion of Salina in a strong growth area. One hundred sixty-three students enrolled in kindergarten through sixth grade. Eight adults made up the entire staff including the custodian and the principal, Miss Erleen Lindeman. The building was composed of seven classrooms, a library, and a multi-purpose room.

By 1973, the enrollment had grown to 199 students. A new two-room addition was built on the west side of the school that year. The first and second grade students were moved into the new rooms.

By the fall of 1980, 248 students were enrolled in the school. That year a second addition to Meadowlark Ridge was approved. This addition was placed at the west end of the school and consisted of three classrooms. In addition, a double-wide trailer was moved just south of the school to house all special programs: learning disabilities, counselor, speech, gifted, and school psychologist.

In the summer of 1985, a two-classroom temporary cottage was moved to Meadowlark School. The sixth grade had their classes in this building. The enrollment that fall rose to 316 students.

The 1986 enrollment totaled 321 students. Music classes were held in the library and in some of the student's classrooms. Art classes were also in the classrooms. A special bond election was held on April 7 and the voters approved the funds to add five classrooms to the school. In the fall of 1987, 335 students were enrolled at Meadowlark Ridge. Construction of the five-classroom addition began in September 1987. The temporary classrooms and double-wide trailer were scheduled to be removed from the premises after the construction was completed. Students participated in a time capsule ceremony with each class contributing items to be placed under the concrete floor. The enrollment at Meadowlark Ridge totaled 338 on March 18, 1988, when the new addition was officially opened.

During the summer of 1994, construction began on a two-classroom addition. This addition was completed just two days before school started in the fall. The enrollment at Meadowlark during the 1995-96 school year was approximately 380 students.

In January 1996, a new 14-station computer lab was established at Meadowlark Ridge. This state-of-the-art computer center was made possible through the cooperative efforts of the site council, technology committee, parents, and the community.

In November of 1998, the citizens of Salina approved a $98 million bond issue to improve school facilities. $3.6 million was spent at Meadowlark Ridge to add 30,000 square feet of new classroom space as well as remodel the existing building. The dedication of the newly renovated and expanded Meadowlark Ridge Elementary School was held on April 14, 2002, overseen by then-principal Marcy Roth and former superintendent, Dr. Gary Norris.

In the Spring of 2014, patrons of USD 305 passed a $110.7 million bond issue that added additional space at MLR. $2.3 million was spent at MLR to add classrooms that accommodated all-day kindergarten, a science lab, a storm shelter/gym, teachers lounge, renovation to the EBD area, more parking and a bus lane, and secure entry at the front door. A groundbreaking ceremony was held on April 23, 2015 with construction beginning on May 25, 2015. Construction was completed in April 2016, with a ribbon cutting ceremony held May 9, 2016 overseen by former principal Deena Hilbig and former superintendent, William Hall.

Additional playground equipment was added in 2016 to allow kindergarten to have more areas to play. New playground equipment was purchased by PTO, as well as gaga ball pits in 2022. 

Now, in 2024, Meadowlark Ridge has an enrollment of just over 400 students including two sessions of preschool students. Our building also has two EBD classrooms, as well as many classrooms that hold student support services (special education, intervention, ELL). Every classroom has a Promethean Board installed and all students K-5 have a chromebook issued to them. In addition to classroom teachers, students see additional teachers in science, physical education, music, library, and art.