Project Description

McKinney Day Treatment School was originally built as Lillibridge School.  Lillibridge School was built in 1905 and an addition, which would eventually become McKinney Day Treatment School, was built in 1929.  Lillibridge School was located at 11131 Kercheval Street, between Lillibridge Street and Beniteau Street, on Detroit’s lower east side.  Lillibridge School served the residents of that lower east side neighborhood and was a large, three-story school.  Just like much of Detroit, Lillibridge School was forced to close after the “white flight” had moved almost everyone out of that neighborhood and the enrollment numbers at Lillibridge School had dropped to record lows.  Lillibridge School was demolished in the 1970’s.  The original gymnasium, auditorium, and a 1964 modern-addition were not demolished, however, and stood as the foundation to what would eventually become McKinney Day Treatment School.

After most of Lillibridge School was demolished in the 1970’s, the remaining section of the school was still large enough to become another school.  Marcus Garvey Academy was the first school that opened up in the old Lillibridge School building.  Marcus Garvey Academy occupied the school for several years before moving location.

When Marcus Garvey Academy moved, the school then finally became McKinney Day Treatment School.   McKinney Day Treatment School was a property of the Detroit Public Schools system and served students from 9th grade through 12th grade.  It was a special-education school that served students with learning-disabilities, who would normally struggle in a regular public high school.  McKinney Day Treatment School also provided vocational training, adapted physical-education, and assistive-technology for their students.  McKinney Day Treatment School had an average enrollment of approximately 80 students each year.  It was a much needed school, however most of the resources and funding from Detroit Public Schools was lost and McKinney Day Treatment School was forced to close its doors.

McKinney Day Treatment School closed for good in 2007.  Since its closing, the building was scrapped heavily.  Within just a couple of years, the school was wide-open to trespass.  Most of the school’s windows, doors, and even some of the building’s walls were scrapped.  It looked like a bomb had gone off inside the school.

As of 2015, McKinney Day Treatment School still sits abandoned and wide-open.  The school seems as if it is barely standing these days, but there are still no current plans for demolition or redevelopment.  The Detroit Public Schools police still keep a close eye on the school and will prosecute anyone that gets caught trespassing on the property.