McAdory High School

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McAdory High School
McAdory High School.jpg
Established 1920
School type Public
District Jefferson County Schools
Grades 9-12
Principal M. Tod Humphries
Enrollment 1,086 (2016)
Colors black & yellow
Mascot Yellowjackets
Location 4800 High School Road map

McAdory High School is a public high school in McCalla. The school enrolls students in grades 9-12 and is a part of the Jefferson County School System. McAdory Middle School, which opened in 2010, shares its campus with the high school.


McAdory High School has its origin in the marriage of Isaac McAdory and Alice Sadler. They were both teachers and together opened the Pleasant Hill Academy in 1868. McAdory served as superintendent of education for Jefferson County from 1894 to 1913 before retiring. He sold the Pleasant Hill property to the county for the creation of a new tile-roofed, stucco-finished high school, which was built for $45,000 and named in his honor when it opened in 1920.

Fires damaged the high school on April 5, 1929, forcing students to return to the condemned but still-standing Pleasant Hill building of 1907. The first wing of a new building was completed that year, with additions under construction through 1931. That building was destroyed by a second fire, which occurred on December 18, 1938. Its reinforced concrete replacement, constructed with labor from the Works Progress Administration, was completed in 1941 at a cost of $250,000.

The new building was designed by E. B. Van Keuren in a modern, Art Deco style. It featured large blue-tinted windows in steel sashes with green-painted classroom walls and acoustic ceilings and resilient asphalt tile floors. The one-story reinforced concrete structure was designed to be fireproof and strong enough to withstand tornadoes. It was supplied with an intercom system and a "visual education" room with a film projector.

A third fire damaged the school in 1976. A major expansion, with new offices, gymnasium, library, band room, class rooms and training rooms was completed in 1977. In 1996 the elementary school split away, followed in 2010 by the middle school grades.

McAdory hosted students from the damaged Oak Grove High School after the 1998 Oak Grove tornado. A major refurbishment of McAdory High School began in 2003 and was completed in 2006. Davis Architects, Van Keuren's successor firm, designed the renovations.

McAdory High School was included in the state's list of "failing schools" in 2016. The listing was based on 10th grade performance on the "ACT Aspire" standardized test. In 2016 McAdory 10th graders scored 6% on math proficiency and 18% on reading proficiency. When the 2017 list was released, McAdory was no longer deemed a failing school


Notable alumni


  • Walker, James (1988) "McAdory History from the Beginning". The Way We Were. McAdory School Reunion Committee, republished on - accessed January 24, 2012
  • "McAdory High School" (February 10, 2011) Wikipedia - accessed June 12, 2011
  • Crain, Trisha Powell (January 11, 2017) "Alabama to label five high schools in Jefferson County as 'failing." The Birmingham News

External links