School Records

Do you research school records? I’m not talking about yearbooks. Those can be found on the Yearbooks Page. I’m talking about actual school records, such as enrollment, attendance, and grade reports for example. These are interesting source documents because they might record the student’s age, birth date and location, and possibly their parents’ names. All great ways to find this information if you haven’t found them in other documents about your target ancestor. Besides, finding out your grandmother’s grades would be interesting!

The link lists referenced below, feature school record collections from all 50 states, and list collections that are available for free online. Some of the larger subscription sites have also made some source school documents available, but they are paid sites and collections.

If you wish to get educated with some basic information regarding what is available and how to navigate your research for school records, please read these  summaries:

So, what types of records related to schools are maintained and often available?

  • School Census
  • School Catalogs
  • Teacher’s Registers
  • Attendance Records
  • Report Cards
  • Class Logs
  • Teacher Rosters
  • School Board Meetings/Reports
  • Academic Team and Class Photos
  • Local Newspaper Articles:
  •  – Graduation Lists
  •  – School Activities
  •  – School Sports
  • Student Newspapers
  • Alumni Directories and Publications
  • Yearbooks
  • Yearbook Indexes

And, what type of information can you derive from these school records?

  • Name (often includes a middle name which is useful).
  • Age
  • Physical Characteristics – color/race, disability.
  • Birth Date
  • Current Residence Address
  • Name of Father
  • Name of Mother
  • Occupations of parents
  • Grades
  • Classes Taken
  • Activities (from Photos)
  • Date left school (can help with family residence relocation)

Here are links to free online school record collections; the links are accessible by state below:

Good Luck and Happy Hunting!