The first classes in Florence were held in a room at the Land Office Building in 1857. Soon after, a Methodist Church building was secured and one teacher was hired for the 56 students.
The first Florence school opened in 1889 at 8516 N. 31st Street in the Village of Florence. Omaha annexed the village in 1917, and the school became part of the Omaha Public Schools. That building was razed in 1961, and the current building at 7902 North 36th Street replaced it. The original concrete steps that lead to the building on N. 31st are still intact on the hill.
The village and the school were named for Florence Kilbourne, the adopted daughter of James Mitchell, who originally plotted the Florence area.