James Moore Central High opened its doors for staff and students for the first time in September, 1960, under the name of United Church Regional High School. It was one of approximately one hundred Regional and Central High Schools built by the Smallwood Government in the 1950's and 1960's. [The building itself was designed by architect T.A. Lench, MRAIC in 1959 -- Ed.]
The school was officially opened on May 3, 1961 with the Hon. J.R. Smallwood as guest speaker. Present also on stage in the school's auditorium were the Minister of Education, Hon. G.A. Frecker; Mr. Charles Roberts, U.C. Superintendent of Education for the Province; Rev. L.A.D. Curtis, United Church Conference President; Rev. Dr. Isaac Davis, U.C. Minister of the Carbonear Charge; Deputy Mayor G.W. Janes, representing the Town of Carbonear; Lloyd Powell, Chairman of the Building Committee, and also representing the Builder and Contractor, Saunders, Howell & Co. Ltd.; James Moore, Chairman of the U.C. School Board; Eric Taylor, Member of the Building Committee; William Stevenson, representing the U.C. School Board, Harbour Grace; and Principal of the U.C. Regional High School, Hudson Davis.
There were seven teachers on the first staff in September 1960 - Principal, Hudson Davis; Vice-Principal, Wallace Bursey; Elmer Davis, Harvey Beck, Clayton Peach, Ernest Pike and Marguerite Green. Approximately 160 students in grades 9, 10 and 11 came from Carbonear, Harbour Grace and Freshwater - students being bussed from outlying areas. Several bursary students attended as well under the Government Bursary Program. There were at least ten different communities represented by students in the first year. The school was one of the first Regional High Schools in the area and in the 1960's it was the envy of teachers and students alike, far and wide.
Academic excellence and school spirit were of the highest standard. Throughout the 1960's a graduating student of U.C. Regional High almost always won the Electoral Scholarship for the Carbonear District. In the public exams in Grade 10 of 1963, as many as 10 students won Confederation Scholarships and on a per capita basis this was equal or better than any other school in the province.
In the first year of the High School, the hockey team won the High School Championship for the area.
In 1967, the U.C. Regional High was officially renamed James Moore Regional High to honor James Moore who retired from the local U.C. School Board in 1962 after 25 unbroken years of service, five years as chairman.
Beginning in September, 1966, the U.C. School Board under Chairman John Rorke, Jr., and the Anglican School Board under Chairman, Bruce Hookey, began a new and co-operative educational endeavour called Joint Service Schools. All Anglican and United Church students were shared between Elementary North, St. James, and James Moore Regional High. All Anglican and United Church students up to Grade 7 attended Elementary North; all Anglican and U.C. students in Grades 8 and 9 attended St. James (which became a Junior High that year); and all Anglican and U.C. students in Grades 10 and 11 went to James Moore Regional High. Hudson Davis, Supervising Principal, was on educational leave at M.U.N. that year and Harold French returned to Carbonear as Principal of James Moore Regional High. This was also the first year of James Moore's famous Annual Talent Shows which lasted for ten years to 1976.
In 1969, when integration of school boards began in the province, the local school boards in Carbonear disappeared, and all Protestant schools came under the administration of Avalon North Integrated School Board situated at Bay Roberts. There was and still is, some administrative authority at the local level vested in the Local School Board Committee appointed by Avalon North Integrated. Also in 1969, Hudson Davis, our Principal, left Carbonear to become District Superintendent of Terra Nova Integrated School Board at Gander.
In 1974, the administration of James Moore Regional High and St. James Junior High was further consolidated when St. James Junior High became part of James Moore High and administrated as a single unit called James Moore Central High with Grades 8 to 11 under Lewis Cole as Principal in the James Moore Building and Elmer Davis as Vice-Principal in the St. James Building.
Over its 25 years, James Moore Central High has had only four Principals - Hudson Davis (Supervising Principal) 1960-66 and 1967 to '69 (8 years); Harold French (Principal and Supervising Principal) 1966 to 1972 (6 years); Leonard Pike (Supervising Principal) 1972-73 (1 year); Lewis Cole (Principal and Supervising Principal) 1973 to 1985 (12 years). Elmer Davis has the distinction of being the only teacher on staff for the full 25 years - the first year as staff member and the last 24 years as Vice-Principal.
Over the 25 years, there have been about 60 different staff members at J.M.C.H. and well over 1000 students have graduated. Five former graduates of J.M.C.H. were on staff when it closed - William Butt from the first graduating class; others were Glen Murray, Arthur Reid, James Burke, and Jill Pottle.
On June 21, 1985, James Moore Central High became educational history when it closed its doors to students and staff for the last time. But Animus Vivit - The Spirit Lives On.
A History Timeline of United Church Schools in Carbonear Date Event 1908 United Church College is built 1952 Hudson Davis and Harold French become principal and vice principal at United Church College
(more info and great pictures at The Virtual Museum of Canada)
1956 United Church College and Alfred Penney Memorial Hall renamed United Church Academy September, 1960 First classes start at United Church Regional High School May 3, 1961 United Church Regional High School official opening ceremony October 16, 1964 Alfred Penney Memorial Hall (elementary school) is destroyed by fire 1965 Davis Elementary School opens its doors January 23, 1966 First official services held at Bethany United Church September, 1966 Joint Service Schools shares Anglican and United Church students among Carbonear schools 1967 United Church Regional High is renamed to James Moore Regional High 1969 Protestant schools come under administration of Avalon North Integrated School Board 1974 St. James Junior High joins James Moore Regional High to become James Moore Central High June 21, 1985 James Moore Central High closes its doors July 5-6, 1985 JMCH School Daze 25th Anniversary Reunion is held September, 1985 Carbonear Integrated Collegiate opens its doors, taking in remaining JMCH undergraduates July 29-August 1, 2005 UCRH Class of 1965 40th Anniversary Reunion is held
JMCH Faculty and Staff, 1960-1985
Principals Hudson Davis
Vice-Principals Wallace Bursey
(Former UCRH/JMRH/JMCH graduates are shown in bold.)
Teachers Eugene Abbott
William (Art) Sharpe
Support Staff Clara Wareham (School Secretary)
Charles Burden (Caretaker)
Donald Lewis (Caretaker)
Edison Penney (Caretaker)
Arthur Thomas (Caretaker)
Reuben Buckle (Caretaker)
United Church Board of Education, 1960-61 James Moore (Chairman)
Wallace Burden (Secretary-Treasurer)
George Stentaford (Past Secretary-Treasurer)
Rev. Dr. Isaac Davis
John Rorke, Jr.