Venable Elementary School

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Front side of Venable Elementary School. Photo by Mike Kropf.

Venable Elementary School is one of six elementary (PK-4) schools in the City of Charlottesville's school system. Venable Elementary is named for Charles Scott Venable. According to the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE), for the 2019-2020 school year, Venable is the only public elementary school in the division which does not receive Title 1 funding.


Venable Elementary School was founded in 1925, primarily to serve the neighborhoods bordering the University of Virginia.

Ambox notice.png This article documents a current event. Information may change rapidly as the event progresses.

In 2021, the school system is reviewing the name as part of a system-wide review of facility names. [1]


The school was named for Colonel Charles Scott Venable (1827–1900) who was a Civil War soldier, professor of mathematics at the University of Virginia and author of arithmetic books for children.[2]

Colonel Venable served as an officer in the Confederate States Army as an aide-de-camp to General Robert E. Lee from 1862 until 1865. Primarily because of his association with Lee, including a personal letter of recommendation from him, Venable was offered a position as a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Virginia. Venable taught at UVA for the next 40 years.  He wrote a number of mathematics textbooks which were adopted in Virginia schools and served on the Charlottesville School Board for six years.[3]

Paul Goodloe McIntire was an influential proponent of naming the school for Venable, speaking before the School Board the month prior to the Board voting to name the new primary school for him in 1924.

Building Additions

Later additions on the north end added an auditorium/gym wing. The playground/picnic area was constructed in May 1995 as a community project.[4]

School Desegregation in Charlottesville

Venable, along with now-closed Lane High School, were the first Charlottesville schools to be desegregated when nine students of the “Charlottesville Twelve” entered the schools on September 8, 1959. In recent years, Venable and other Charlottesville City Schools have often hosted members of the Charlottesville Twelve to speak to students about their experiences.

Current administration

Paige has filled a wide variety of roles in Charlottesville City Schools: Quest teacher, instructional coordinator, and the principal of Jackson-Via Elementary School (1990-2003).

Former administration

Principal Jamie Mathieson abruptly resigned from the school in September 2010. Kenneth Leatherwood was scheduled to serve as the interim principal through the end of the school year[5]. Erin Kershnertook over as the permanent principal on July 1, 2010. [6] Ms. Valeta Paige is serving as the vice-principal.[3]

School Population (June 2010)

  • Enrollment: 267
  • Asian/Pacific Islander: 6%
  • Black: 26.6%
  • Hispanic: 4.1%
  • White: 53.6%
  • Unspecified: 9.7%
  • ESL students: 20.3%
  • Gifted students: 30.3%
  • Special Education students: 6.7%
  • Pupil/teacher ratio: 20:1[7]



  1. Web. Green Business Alliance forms to advance emissions reductions; Northam signs legislation for New River Valley train station, Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Community Engagement, Town Crier Productions, May 6, 2021, retrieved May 11, 2021.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Web. Charles S. Venable (1827–1900), Sunshine, Daniel, Encyclopedia Virginia, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, 22 Feb. 2018, retrieved 28 Aug. 2019.
  5. Web. Venable principal resigns; reason unknown, Rachana Dixit, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, September 17, 2010, retrieved September 20, 2010.
  6. Web. Venable Elementary names new principal, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, April 12, 2011, retrieved April 12, 2011.
  7. Web. Venable Elementary School, retrieved 25 June 2012.

External links

Official site