J.Frank Hillyard Middle School

J. Frank Hillyard Middle School
226 Hawks Hill Drive
Broadway, VA 22815
Phone (540) 896-8961
Fax (540) 896-6641

School History

J. Frank Hillyard Middle School originated from the former faculty and students of John C. Myers Middle School. The John C. Myers School served the Broadway High School area from 1964-1998.  The first principal, James Rohrer, was succeeded by Ashby Shifflet, Jr. O. Franklin Showalter, Jr. served as a principal for sixteen years and was succeeded by Ronald L. Smith in 1988.  Frederic Babbitt was appointed principal in 1993.

As plans were finalized for the construction of a new Broadway High School, the County School Board decided that the old Broadway High school would become the area's middle school.  A committee for naming the school was formed, and recommended the name of J. Frank Hillyard to the school board, which approved the name.

James Frank Hillyard was principal of Broadway High School from 1939-1969, with the seventeen years being served in solely confined to school or the classroom.  He served as scoutmaster for the Broadway Boy Scout Troop for twelve years.  He was president of the Broadway Volunteer Fire Company for thirteen years, as well as treasurer of the organization. He was also a member of Plains District Memorial Park Board for twelve years.

Mr. Hillyard died April 8, 1977. As well-known Daily News Record sports editor, Vincent Reilly once observed, J. Frank Hillyard was an "educator, farmer, churchman, and civic leader," adding that "not all the winners are on the playing field."   Sometimes they are found in locations removed from the roar of the crowd, like in the principal's office at Broadway High School.

J. Frank Hillyard served his school and community well.  He expressed his ideals in an address to the students at Broadway High School in 1965:

"One's educational progress cannot be judged by testing his intellectual development alone.  If we want to know whether one is truly educated, we should inquire that first about his character and second about his manners.  Evidence of intellectual performance should come third.  Too little stress has been placed upon desirability of sound character and pleasing manners.  Industry and intellect are important enough but it is not enough that an engine be powerful and well-fueled.  If it is driven the wrong way, it may become an instruction of destruction."

In the Spring of 1997, a Building of Transition Committee completed the initial organization of preparing for the building move.  This included the assignment of grade levels to sections of J. Frank Hillyard, and the determination of job tasks for Transaction Sub-Committees.  In the Fall of 1997, a School Identity Committee of teachers, students. and parents chose Hawks as the new mascot name, and green and white as the school colors.  The mascot and colors were chosen from suggestions formally provided by the Parent Advisory Council.  The School Identity Committee also named the school entrance Hawks Hill Drive, and have the name Hawks Hill, to the hill upon which the school sits.

Plans for the inventory, packing, and moving of materials were finalized in the Winter of 1998. On May 20, 1998, the Reading on Parade occurred, where the John C. Myers students and teachers moved all library books from the shelves of John C. Myers to the library shelves of J. Frank Hillyard. On June 5th and 6th. 1998, the teachers and staff completed the move of materials, supplies, and furniture to J. frank Hillyard Middle School.

Block scheduling was introduced in the initial year of J. Frank Hillyard Middle School. This was in conjunction with the addition of required year-long computer courses for 7th and 8th graders, and a move to block scheduling to all county middle schools. Redistricting further made this a year of change, increasing the student population to 780, the faculty to 63 and the total staff 88. On August 27, 1998, J. Frank Hillyard Middle School opened for it's students.



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It is the policy of Rockingham County School Board to comply with all applicable state and federal laws regarding non-discrimination

in employment and educational programs and services. The Rockingham County Public Schools will not discriminate illegally on the

basis of sex, race, religion, national origin, disability, or age as to employment or educational programs and activities.