In 1880, with just 25 families in the Fall Brook area (not yet named “Fallbrook”), the children attended school near the General Store of Fallbrook founder Vital Reche, in a sixteen by eighteen foot building with no ceiling, and that was “falling to pieces”. By 1886 residents passed a Bond Issue to build a fitting schoolhouse, and on land donated by Vital Reche, a new schoolhouse was built with an initial enrollment of about 20 students. On March 4th, 1896, the schoolhouse was completely destroyed by fire, to be rebuilt as the current structure before the end of the year.
In 1934, The Reche Club was formed to protect and preserve the one-room schoolhouse, and by 1939, all classes were discontinued, completely shifted to the newer schools of “West” Fallbrook. The Reche Club continued to care for and maintain the Reche Schoolhouse for the next 76 years.
In 2016, the schoolhouse was turned over to the Fallbrook Historical Society, and on September 17, 2016, following the completion of $35,000 in renovations, the Reche Schoolhouse celebrated a grand re-opening. The Historical Society continues to hold events and offers occasional educational tours of the schoolhouse, and now, open to the public regularly on the 3rd Saturday of each month. This facility is also available for community and private events on a rental basis.
The Reche Schoolhouse is one of the oldest buildings in Fallbrook and the first school ever built in the community. From the wooden floors, to the chalkboards on the wall, visitors get a taste of how education in Fallbrook got started.
The Reche Schoolhouse is a major part of Fallbrook’s history.