top of page

Acerca de

students in NC

Educational Historic Timeline & Resources

Historic Educational Timeline

1825 — North Carolina State Literary Fund created to finance primary education for white youths

​1830 — Law passed in North Carolina making it illegal to teach a slave to read or write

1832 — The Reverend Joseph Caldwell advocated for education for white youths

1835 — North Carolina took away free Black people’s right to vote

1839 — North Carolina established free public schools for white youths

1840 — State public school system established

1852 — General Assembly attempted to divert resources from UNC to aid public schools

1853 — Orange County Public Schools developed

1865 — Equal Rights League established to ensure full citizenship and rights for Black North Carolinians

1866 — Freedman’s Convention in Raleigh

1866 — Quakers established a school in Chapel Hill

1868 — Wilson Caldwell, whose father was enslaved by UNC’s president, Joseph Caldwell,  founded the Caldwell School for Negroes

1869 —Freedman’s School established in Hillsborough

1871-1874 — Conservatives gained control of the General Assembly

1884 — 35 white schools and 31 Black schools present in Orange County

1887 — Hayes Tilden Compromise removes federal troops from the South and leaves Black people unprotected from terror

1891-1892 — Kemp Plummer Battle taught Biblical history and modern methods of research, such as developing “a logical view of the stream of human events and the evolution of races and nations”

1870-1906 — Statistical Record of the Progress of Public Education 1870-1906 was released

1890 — Quakers offered to donate building at St. Paul’s school if the town of Chapel Hill paid the teacher’s salaries

1896 — Plessey v. Ferguson

1898-1912 — Dr. L.H. Hackney established chronically underfunded Hackney school for Black children in Chapel Hill

1902 — Chapel Hill Public School opened in Orange County for white children

1909 — Chapel Hill school district chartered by NC General Assembly

1915 — Stuart Willis gave speech “What can we do?“ and organized volunteers from UNC to develop Black school to teach them to be better servants

1916 — Orange County Training School opened for Black students in Orange County

1921 -1922 — Black Orange County residents raised more than half of the money to fund Cool Springs School north of Chapel Hill

1922 — Orange County Training School destroyed by fire

1924 — Orange County added funding to expand school year

1924 — Henry Stroud donated land for Orange County Training School

1927 — Chapel Hill School district was made training school of UNC’s school of education

1929 — Orange County refused to add additional funding for Black schools to expand school term from 6 to 8 months

1930 — Black Chapel Hill residents vote to increase their taxes and join Chapel Hill School district

1933 — New Deal legislation made available $120 billion dollars in loans (worth a trillion dollars today) for white people and created jobs designed to eradicate unemployment

1933 — Home Owners Loan Corporation Invested in the cultivation of white neighborhoods with color-coded communities based on race and offered inexpensive homes for the white neighborhoods

1934 — The Federal Housing Act insured mortgages of lower-income Americans, helping white citizens acquire financing through private banks and other financial institutions

1935 — Social Security Act provided benefits to American workers except farm and domestic workers, the primary vocation of Black Orange County workers

1938 — Brick construction for Central High School (formerly Negro High School)

1939 — Chapel Hill’s white community had paved roads

1944 — GI Bill sent $95 billion dollars of educational, housing and employment benefits to mostly white soldiers coming home from war 2,255,00 soldiers received this “leg up”

1947 — Because of the GI Bill, student enrollment at UNC increased from 4,100 to 7,250

1947-1966 — Chapel Hill High educated white students

1948 — OCTS name changed to Lincoln High to indicate more academic rigor

1954 — Brown v. Board of Education

1955 — Pearsall Plan developed to offer school vouchers and delay school integration in  North Carolina and all 100 counties voted in favor

1959 Stanley Vickers Lawsuit initiated to force desegregation of the CHCCS system

1960 — Committee headed by UNC professor Harold Langenderfer to study curriculum and transfers

1963 — Chapel Hill transfers allowed Black citizens to attend white schools. Most Black citizens were reluctant to apply out of fear of retribution

1964 — School district lines redrawn

1966 — Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools fully integrated

1969 — Disruptions at Chapel Hill High school over unfair treatment of newly integrated Black students result in Chapel Hill police, Orange County sheriff and riot-helmeted officers patrolling the school and injured Black high school students

1970 — United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare notified the UNC System it was in violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by failing to implement sufficient desegregation plans

1978 — Adams Criteria established to assist in creating programs to rectify past discrimination

1981 — UNC resolved consent decree from Adams v. Richardson in 1970 through an administrative proceeding, avoiding loss of $100 million of federal funds

1982 — NAACP Legal Defense Fund sought to re-open Adams lawsuit

1990 — Housekeepers threatened with job loss for joining the NAACP; the largest education advocacy organization in Chapel Hill

1994 — Leandro v. State of North Carolina lawsuit filed by five school districts in low wealth communities to ensure family wealth and residence should not be barriers to achieving a sound education

1996 — Controversy erupts over desire to open new high school, East Chapel Hill, in affluent neighborhood

1997 — N.C. Supreme Court unanimously ruled that access to a sound basic education is a constitutional right

2000 — North Carolina Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against requiring schools to be racially balanced

2002 — N.C. lower court found North Carolina to be in violation of providing a sound basic education for all students

2004 — N.C. Supreme Court upheld ruling that access to a sound basic education is a constitutional right

2017 — Governor Roy Cooper created Commission on Access to Sound Basic Education

2018 — The Govenor’s commission hired WestEd, an independent consultant group, to study and recommend a plan to remedy constitutional violation of basic education for students

2019 — WestEd released findings in 287-page action plan to target educational inequity

Photo: 1955 Chapel Hill, NC

From left, LeRoy Frasier, John Lewis Brandon and Ralph Frasier on the steps of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, N.C. 


These young men were among the first African-American undergraduate students to successfully challenge racial segregation at North Carolina's flagship public university. Frasier; his brother, Ralph; and John Lewis Brandon were students at Hillside High School in Durham when they applied to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1955. They were rejected until a federal court judge ordered UNC-Chapel Hill to admit them.


(Photo Credit: Roland Giduz Photographic Collection/The Wilson Library, UNC Chapel Hill via Associated Press)

Danita Mason-Hogans

Photo: 1997 Chapel Hill, NC

Bridging the Gap founder, Danita Mason-Hogans

Image from an after school program in 1997 built by Danita Mason-Hogans to close to achievement gap between Black and white students.

Seeds of Sheba.jpg

Students and teachers, circa 1905 | Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Students and teachers, circa 1910 | Chapel Hill, North Carolina


Ballinger, Susan, et al. “Slavery and the Making of the University.” Omeka RSS, 2006,

Sarah Byrne Bausell, Torri A. Staton. “Out of Site, Out of Mind: The Evolving Significance of Race in the Story of an Early Quaker-Freedmen School -


Sarah Byrne Bausell, Torri A. Staton, Sherick Hughes, 2020.” SAGE Journals, 2019,


Chapman, John Kenyon., “Black Freedom and the University of North Carolina, 1793-1960.” University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2006, p. 235.


Clotfelter, Charles, et al. “The Evolution of School Segregation: The North Carolina Story.” FutureEd, 2019,


Darity, William A., and A. Kirsten Mullen. From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century. The University of North Carolina Press, 2020.


Darity, William "Sandy", and A. Kirsten Mullen. “True Reparations Are a National Debt.” Roosevelt Institute, 25 Feb. 2020,


Coon, Charles L. A Statistical Record of the Progress of Public Education in North Carolina from1870 - 1906. The State of North Carolina, 1907.


Edwards-Paschall, C., 2017. Black History, Our History - Chapel Hill Magazine. [online] Chapel Hill Magazine. Available at: <> [Accessed 10 August 2020].


Evans, Tampathia. “Minutes of the Freedmen's Convention, Held in the City of Raleigh, on the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th of October, 1866:” Freedmen's Convention (1866 : Raleigh, N.C.). Minutes of the Freedmen's Convention, Held in the City of Raleigh on the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th of October, 1866., The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2001,


Expanding Educational Opportunity in North Carolina The Public School Forum’s Study Group XVI 2016 Action Plan and Recommendations,


Fahey, Kelly. “Study Reveals Wide Income, Racial Inequality in Orange County.”, 5 Apr. 2018,


Farberov, Snejana. “The Day the KKK Came to Town: Poignant Black and White Photos from 1987 Ku Klux Klan March Raise Specter of Bigotry on 60th Anniversary of Brown v. Board.” Daily Mail Online, Associated Newspapers, 17 May 2014,


Foust, Bonnie. “US Fighting Move to Reopen UNC Decree.” Daily Tar Heel, 22 July 1982.


Granados, Alex. “Leandro Report Released: What It Will Take for NC Children to Receive Sound, Basic Education.” EducationNC, EducationNC, 27 Jan. 2020,


Justesen, Benjamin R. “Equal Rights League.” NCpedia, 2006,


Jaffa Panken, Carolina Academic Library Associate. “A Can for All Seasons: Quonset Huts at Postwar UNC.” For the Record, 15 Jan. 2020,


Lavecchia, Adam M., et al. “Long-Run Effects from Comprehensive Student Support: Evidence from Pathways to Education.” IZA, 2019,


Learning Policy Institute, WestED. “Sound Basic Education for All: An Action Plan for North Carolina.” Box, WestEd and the William & Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovation, 2019,


Meyer, Graig M., and George W. Noblit. More than a Mentoring Program: Attacking Institutional Racism. Information Age Publishing, Inc., 2018.


Moore, Rosetta Austin. The Impact of Slavery on the Education of Blacks in Orange County, North Carolina, 1619-1970. Lulu Publishing Services, 2015.


Oakford, Robert Lynch and Patrick. “The Economic Benefits of Closing Educational Achievement Gaps.” Center for American Progress, 2014,


Roy, Ethan. “Deep Rooted: A Brief History of Race and Education in North Carolina.” Education NC, 19 Dec. 2019,


Shultz, Amy and others. “Associations between socioeconomic status an allostatic load: effects of neighborhood poverty and tests of mediating pathways” American Journal of Public Health (2112):


Sparks, Sarah D. “Hidden Segregation Within Schools Is Tracked in New Study.” Education Week, 26 Feb. 2020,


Thomas, Al. “Blacks Charge School Harassment.” The Daily Tar Heel, 14 Nov. 1969.


Wilhelm, Sophia. “Gone but Not Forgotten: Chapel Hill School District Slow Start to Desegregate.” Daily Tar Heel, 2018,

bottom of page