(Editor's Note: To read a quick summary of the Edwards School, click here.)
The large, u-shaped Clarence R. Edwards Junior High School, at Walker and Main Street, opened in 1931, the same year its namesake died.
Major General Clarence Ransom Edwards, veteran of the Spanish-American War and a much-decorated hero of World War I, was born in Ohio but spent many years in Boston, where he served as head of the U.S. Army Department of the Northeast. He received, posthumously, the U.S. Army Distinguished Service Medal, for "exceptionally meritorious and distinguished services" to the government of the United States during World War I.
The Edwards School was one of only two new schools built in Charlestown during the first half of the 20th century -- the Oliver Holden Elementary School on Pearl Street, built in the late 1920s, was the other.
The building is surrounded by houses built in the late 19th Century. Its south side faces a parking lot and the main entrance on the east side overlooks Walker Street.
Currently there are about 500 students enrolled at the school, which teaches grades six through eight. The student body is multi-cultural, with a mix of Hispanic, African American, Asian and Caucasian students.
Since 2005 the Edwards school has been operating with an extended day schedule. To help raise the scores of its students the state of Massachusetts awarded the Edwards and other city schools additional money to allow for an extended day curriculum. The non-profit Citizen Schools became involved and added to the academic curriculum an enrichment program, which included apprenticeships with the Boston Ballet and Google.
Citizens Schools continues to provide enhancement programs for sixth grade students. There are also extended day programs for seventh and eight grade students, which include musical theater, community service, dancing, swimming, tennis and fashion design.
Information for this article was compiled with research from the following: http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2009/11/pdf/elt_union_districts.pdf; http://hpronline.org/hprgument/the-edwards-middle-school-writes-about-politics/; http://www.bostonpublicschools.org/school/edwards-middle-school; http://www.localschooldirectory.com/public-school/38887/MA; Boston Landmarks Commission inventory.