Where did Western Union begin. . .
For more than 75 years, this school has been an integral part of the Union County community. At various times in this long history, the school has been a High School, a Junior High School, and an Elementary School. It has pioneered Civil Rights for the County and surmounted severe hardships. Many local families have had several generations come through these halls . We are pleased to share its interesting and unique history :
· In 1940, Western Union High School was created and located in a 4-room brick building in the Marvin area. The 1941 graduating class was 3 students. The total enrollment was 96. In the 1940's, the school built additional rooms for elementary education, home economics, and agricultural education.
· Western Union High School was the first local high school for Black students in Union County.
· In 1954, the school building was destroyed by fire. A new school was sited to be built in the present-day location in Mineral Springs. During the 2 years it took to build a new school building, the 428 students and 13 teachers continued teaching and learning wherever they could find space for a make-shift classroom, including busses and churches.
· The Mineral Springs location opened as a full-service school, grades 1-12. There were 14 classrooms, 27 teachers, and over 900 students.
· The school year was split to allow time off for students to support the cotton harvest. This was later changed to follow the regular academic school calendar.
· As the population in our area grew and changed, so did Western Union. In 1970, Western Union became a Junior High School. Local 7th and 8th graders from Mineral Springs, Prospect, and Waxhaw Elementaries attended Western Union Middle School.
· In 1975, a new Middle School was built near Parkwood High School. At the same time, Mineral Springs Elementary closed and the students began attending the newly-repurposed Western Union Elementary School.
· The school facility now is far different from that 4-room brick building. The building houses kindergarten through fifth grade in multiple classrooms and wings. In 1997, the Media Center and Cafeteria were expanded. In 2002, classrooms were added and administration offices were centralized in the former shop area . In 2009, the cafeteria was remodeled and upgraded.
· A bond referendum was passed in November 2016. Construction will begin Summer 2018 on 8 new classrooms and enlarging the cafeteria.
· The school continues to adapt to suit the community it serves. For the 2013-2014 school year, the enrollment was 430 students. After changes were made to attendance zones beginning in fall of 2014, our population grew. The 2017-2018 enrollment is approx. 615 students.
As this area has grown and changed, the school has expanded and transformed. The core constant all these years has been the sincere commitment to students and community.
Give your best and nothing less!