Who is Jennie Dean?

  • Jennie Dean It is an example of educational change and growth for over 100 years. Our founder was Jennie S. Dean, the daughter of Charles and Annie Dean, born in Sudley Springs, Virginia. The legacy began in 1893, when Jennie Dean had a dream to build an industrial or vocational school where African American children could learn a useful trade. In spite of numerous attempts and tragedies, the Manassas Industrial School continued to thrive and matured to serve approximately 500 students. Boys learned valuable trades such as agriculture, carpentry, masonry, electricity, plumbing and welding. Girls became proficient in cooking, sewing and gardening. The school survived throughout Jennie Dean's life. Jennie Dean remained involved in the various aspects of the school until her death on May 3, 1913. The school continued to educate its young African American students after her death. In 1938, Prince William, Fairfax, and Fauquier counties agreed to purchase the institution and operated it as a regional high school for African Americans. The City of Manassas established its own public school system in 1977. Jennie Dean became a middle school. Thirteen years later, Jennie Dean was renovated and reopened as an elementary school. Our school campus is unique with its historical site.

    Photo Courtesy of the City of Manassas