Prior to being known as Samuel E. Spaght Science and Communications Magnet, our school had the name of Spaght Multimedia Magnet, Spaght Accelerated Magnet, Ingalls World of Knowledge Magnet, Ingalls Edison, and Ingalls Elementary School. The original school building was located at 9th & Cherry. Built in the 1900s, the school was named in honor of John J. Ingalls, a well known 19th century United States Senator. Tragically, the first building was destroyed by fire just one month and five days after opening.
In 1927, contracts were signed for our current location at 10th & Grove. After opening, the population around the new school grew rapidly resulting in four rooms being added to the structure in 1930 and an additional six rooms added in 1952. In 1962 fourteen classrooms, a multipurpose room, and a library were added.
Racial integration started at Ingalls in 1953 and continued until about 1957. At that time the school was more than 50% African American. By 1969, there was only one white child attending. As a result, Ingalls Elementary became an assigned area for integration purposes from 1971-72. The school's population then changed to 80% white and 20% black.
In the fall of 1992, the educational emphasis of Ingalls changed to a geographical focus and the school was renamed Ingalls World of Knowledge Magnet Elementary School. Then in the fall of 1997, Wichita Public Schools granted a contract to the the Edison Corporation and the school was renamed Ingalls Edison Academy. This partnership lasted until the spring of 2002. When the district did not renew the Edison contract, the school was renamed Samuel E. Spaght Accelerated Magnet Academy. Samuel E. Spaght was a district administrator and lifelong supporter of children. Mr. Spaght served the Wichita Public Schools for 41 years before losing his battle with cancer in May 2000.
Changes came again in 2008 with the decision to overhaul the instruction integration focus. The word was changing and the need for preparing students for the real world became more important than ever. Classrooms were equipped with the newest technology and multimedia resources. Staff were trained to implement these new resources into all subject and content areas. The transition to Samuel E. Spaght Multimedia Magnet began.
Finally, during the 2012-2013 school year a wonderful opportunity to enhance and refresh the current magnet theme came knocking on our door. After receipt of a national Magnet Schools of America grant, which allows magnet schools to integrate new elements through careful planning, guided trainings and student college and career readiness, our school became Samuel E. Spaght Science and Communications Magnet in 2014.