When the Central School was built in 1881 on the west side of Clark Street between 5th and 6th, it served all grades until 1923 when neighborhood schools were built for the elementary grades. Then it became our first Junior High School.
Ames High #2 was built across the street on the east side of Clark in 1912. When High School #3 (now our City Hall) replaced “Old Central” on the west side of Clark in 1937, building #2 became Central Junior High (now a parking lot).
When our present high school was built in 1962, the two buildings on Clark St became Central Junior High--- east and west wings.
In 1985 both Welch and Central closed then re-opened later that same year at the State Street location as Ames Middle School. It remained there until the present Middle School on Mortensen Road opened in 2005.