Paul Public Charter School is named after Edward Paul. Edward Paul was a principal and acting Superintendent in the DC Public School system. Born in Wakefield, New Hampshire, on August 1, 1855, he attended grade school in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. He entered Dartmouth College in 1872 and graduated four years later with high honors.
In the fall of 1876, he came to Washington, DC to teach at the Franklin School. The following year, he became principal at the Boy’s Advanced Grammar School of DC. In 1882, the Washington High School (later Central and currently Cardozo) was erected and Mr. Paul was appointed the first principal. On July 1, 1885, Mr. Paul, after serving as acting Superintendent, was elected Superintendent of schools, but declined the position.
On April 3, 1888, Mr. Paul was injured in an accident which resulted in his death. His death was recognized throughout the community as a great tragedy. Paul Junior High School was named in Edward Paul’s honor. The school was a traditional DC Public School and was started as a branch of MacFarland Junior High. It became a separate school in September 1929 when it moved to the old Brightwood building on Georgia Avenue. The present Paul PCS building opened in February 1930, later adding the north and south wings in 1932 and 1938 respectively.
In 2000, the school was awarded its charter and became the first conversion public charter school in DC. Because of its exemplary reputation through the years, the Paul name remained intact.