History Of Burley Middle School

Before 1950, Jefferson High School, Esmont High School and Albemarle Training School were the black city and county high schools. In 1949, the School Boards decided to consolidate the three schools into one building for all black students in this area. The site was a 17-acre tract of land located on Rose Hill Drive. It was purchased from Jackson P. Burley, an outstanding teacher and active church worker, who had established himself as a distinguished leader within the community. In 1950, the J.W. Daniels Construction Company began building the new high school. Jackson P. Burley High School opened for classes in September 1951, even though some areas of the school were still under construction. During the first year of occupancy, a total of 542 students were enrolled in grades 8-12.

In June 1967, Burley ceased being an all black high school for city and county students. It became known as the Jack Jouett Junior Annex and served as an over-flow school housing seventh graders from Jack Jouett Junior High.

In the fall of 1973, Burley opened with 631 sixth and seventh grade students. The following year, in September 1974, Burley became one of the middle schools in Albemarle County housing 841 students in grades six through eight. The school continued to include all three grades except for the ’76 – ’77 school year, when it operated as a middle school with only seventh and eighth graders. Sixth graders were housed in the elementary schools due to the lack of space. Then in the fall of 1977, Burley became a middle school with grades six through eight once again in accordance with Albemarle County School policy.

During the summer of 1987, a $2.8 million dollar building renovation was initiated. Air conditioning and new energy efficient windows were installed. The project continued during the summer of 1988 with the installation of an elevator and a complete remodeling of the administrative, guidance, and annex areas.

In the summer of 1991, the building renovation continued with changes to the gym and auditorium to include heating, air conditioning, and new lighting.

During the summer of 1995, additional refurbishments were completed to include a new cafeteria floor and furniture, carpeting in the auditorium and main office, new bathroom stalls in the main building, new risers in the band room, and a partial roof replacement.

During the summer of 2001, the auditorium underwent a major renovation. The acoustics were greatly improved, new seats were installed, and the entire area was painted.

In the summer of 2002, over $7 million building renovation and new addition were initiated. The annex was renovated, a two story addition was built connecting the annex to the main building. The second floor of the new addition became the seventh grade wing. The new addition also included a media center with a broadcasting studio, a technology room, a new functional skills classroom and a courtyard located between the new addition and the main building. Each floor and ceiling in the existing building was refurbished. Air conditioning was installed in the gym. The renovation provided each grade level with a science room and lab.