History of Jack Jouett, the Man, and Jack Jouett, the School
During the night of June 3-4, 1781, Captain Jack Jouett rode from Cuckoo Tavern in Louisa County to Charlottesville in time to warn Governor Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry, and other members of the Virginia General Assembly that British soldiers, under the name of Colonel Banastre Tarleton, were on their way to capture them. Captain Jouett became known as the "Paul Revere of the South" because his ride was a significant event in the Revolutionary War, but little is known of Jack Jouett outside Virginia.
Named in honor of this Revolutionary War hero, Jack Jouett School opened in 1966. The Superintendent of Albemarle County Schools at the time was Mr. Paul H. Cale. Mr. G. Elwood Hall was Jouett's first principal. The school began life as a junior high school with a modular schedule and a large intramural program, and it served seventh and eighth graders.
By 1967, the population of the junior high district had increased to such an extent that a change had to be made. All seventh grade students were housed at Burley School, and Jouett became a school for eighth and ninth grade students. The schedule was changed to a traditional six-period day. The curriculum offered the required courses in English, math, social studies, science, and physical education, as well as courses in reading, foreign language, typing, industrial arts, home economics, agriculture, art, and band. Interscholastic activities in football, basketball, and track also began that year. Green and gold were selected as the school colors, and the jaguar was chosen as the mascot.
Mr. Hall was promoted to Assistant Superintendent for Business and Finance in November 1970. Mr. Robert Thraves, then principal at Burley School, was appointed principal of Jack Jouett. When Mr. Thraves was promoted to Director of Supportive Services in May of 1974, Mr. James B. Helvin, Jr., was named principal of Jack Jouett. The school became a ninth grade school for the county in 1974 and grew to an enrollment of just under 900 students, with a faculty of 50. Ninth grade students were the only students at Jack Jouett School until the second county high school, Western Albemarle, opened in September 1977.
On August 29, 1977, Jouett became a middle school and housed sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students. This completed the organizational plan of K-5, 6-8, and 9-12 for the county. Jack Jouett is now one of five middle schools in the county and draws students primarily from Greer, Meriwether Lewis and Broadus Wood Elementary Schools. In 1984, Jouett received national recognition as an outstanding school by the Good Schools Project sponsored by Delta Kappa Pi.
In June 1995, Mr. Helvin retired after twenty-one years as principal. Mr. Russell L. Jarrett became the fourth principal of Jouett, serving from 1995-2003. Mr. David Rogers was principal from 2003 to 2006. Ms. Kathryn Baylor became principal in July 2006.
In 2021, then-Jouett Middle School completed Albemarle County Public Schools' School Name Review process. Under this initiative, all schools in the county named after figures in history underwent the process of review by faculty, staff, students, and community members. After several surveys about the school's name, the school name review committee suggested changing the name of the school to Journey Middle School to Superintendent Dr. Matthew S. Haas. Dr. Haas approved that suggestion, and presented it to the School Board, which also approved the new name. Hence, Jouett Middle School became Journey Middle School on July 1, 2022.