Hill Elementary School

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Hill Elementary School
BCS small logo.png Birmingham City Schools
Years 19092014
Location 507 3rd Street North, (map)
Smithfield
Grades K-5
Principal Taylor Greene, Jr
Enrollment 239 (2008)
Colors red and white
Mascot Bulldogs
Website hillbulldogs.com

Brunetta C. Hill Elementary School (originally Graymont Colored School) was an elementary school in the Birmingham City Schools system located at 507 3rd Street North in the Smithfield community.

The first school was founded in 1909 by the then-independent City of Graymont. Rachel Lester Hill was the principal and teacher. When it became part of the Birmingham system as a function of the Greater Birmingham annexations of 1910, Samuel Harris tool over as principal with a staff of three teachers.

A new building was constructed in 1920 to accommodate a growing student population. An adjacent house was purchased, converted into classrooms, and expanded with a two-room annex in 1931.

It was built in 1952 as a replacement for the former Graymont Colored School, and a year later named for its principal of 21 years, Brunetta Hill. During her tenure the school had grown from four to eight grades.

In 1957 the school added eight classrooms, a gymnasium and auditorium. A two-story frame house on Graymont Avenue which had been used for overflow class space was demolished in order to provide playground space. In 1963 the former complement to Hill Elementary, Graymont Elementary School was first integrated.

In 1980 the upper grades were removed from the school, making it an elementary (K-5) school. In 2005 Hill alumna and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visited Hill Elementary School in company of Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom Jack Straw.

In 2013, under the terms of the Alabama Accountability Act, Hill Elementary School was deemed a "failing school", permitting parents to claim tax credits to transfer students to another school. The school was closed in 2014.

The city applied for, but did not receive, a $35 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development's "Choice Neighborhoods Initiative" for revitalization of the school along with the nearby Smithfield Court public housing community. Even so, Mayor Randall Woodfin proposed that the Birmingham City Council purchase the former school from the Board of Education for redevelopment as workforce housing. The council asked for more information about long-term plans for former schools before approving the purchase.

Principals

References

  • Norris, Toraine (March 23, 2009) "Parents, leaders discuss consolidation of Tuggle, Hill elementary schools in Birmingham." The Birmingham News
  • Chandler, Kim (June 18, 2013) "Alabama Accountability Act: 78 schools listed as failing/ Current private school students not eligible for tax credits." The Birmingham News
  • Stephens, Challen (January 16, 2014) "Alabama releases new list of 76 failing schools." The Birmingham News
  • Prickett, Sam (April 20, 2021) "Birmingham Council Stalls Smithfield Redevelopment, Wants Mayor to Share Plan." BirminghamWatch