The facilities and offices of the Regional School District No. 19 are located east of Hartford in the Town of Mansfield, Connecticut. The Region services the Towns of Ashford, Mansfield and Willington along with agricultural education students from the towns of Coventry and Windham. The administrative offices for the board of education and E.O. Smith High School are located in Mansfield.
The Region’s only school, E.O. Smith High School, was owned by the State of Connecticut and had been run by the University of Connecticut since its inception in 1958 through June 30, 1987. By Public Act 84-42, the State Legislature voted to relinquish ownership of the school to the Town of Mansfield or the Town of Ashford or both towns providing that one or both towns agreed to pay for the physical rehabilitation of the school. The Town of Willington subsequently joined the Region in 1993.
The University of Connecticut signed an agreement with Mansfield and Ashford which required the University to cause the State Treasurer to execute and deliver the deed for the school to the towns on July 1, 1987. When the state deeded the school, Mansfield and Ashford assumed the remaining indebtedness on the State Bonds that were originally issued to finance the school. The final principal and interest on such debt was paid in fiscal year 1988-89.
Mansfield and Ashford voters agreed to the financing of the project, which included the renovation of the school. Mansfield contributed seventy-five percent (75%) and Ashford contributed twenty-five (25%) of the total funding.
On February 11, 1986, the electorate of the both towns voted to establish a new regional school district. On July 1, 1987, Regional School District No. 19 became the owner of the land and buildings of E.O. Smith High School, pursuant to the agreement. The organizational meeting of the Regional Board of Education was held on April 2, 1986. On November 2, 1993, the electors of Ashford, Mansfield and Willington voted to include the Town of Willington into the Region.
The Region presently serves all of the public school population within the member towns in grades 9 through 12. A full range of educational opportunities is offered, including an agricultural education program. A $31 million expansion and renovation project for the school was completed in 2002 resulting in a modern attractive facility. A total of 1,273 students were in membership on October 1, 2003.