West Elizabeth, Pennsylvania
Location in Allegheny County and the state of Pennsylvania
|• Total||0.3 sq mi (0.8 km2)|
|• Land||0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)|
|• Water||0.1 sq mi (0.3 km2)|
|• Density||1,700/sq mi (670/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
- 1 Geography
- 2 History
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Education
- 5 Academic achievement
- 6 Schools
- 7 References
West Elizabeth is located at (40.272901, -79.894918).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough has a total area of 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2), of which 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2), or 27.59%, is water.
The town was initially laid out in 1833, and incorporated March 3, 1848. West Elizabeth was a coal mining and boat-building town. Coal was transported by barge down the Monongahela River to industries in Pittsburgh. Coal was transported from the mine to the river by Walton's Coal Incline and the O'Neil and Company Incline.
As of the census of 2000, there were 565 people, 247 households, and 153 families residing in the borough. The population density was 2,764.6 people per square mile (1,090.7/km²). There were 279 housing units at an average density of 1,365.2 per square mile (538.6/km²). The racial makeup of the borough was 99.29% White, 0.18% African American, 0.35% Asian, and 0.18% from two or more races.
There were 247 households, out of which 28.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.1% were married couples living together, 17.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.7% were non-families. 34.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.92.
In the borough the population was spread out, with 22.5% under the age of 18, 7.6% from 18 to 24, 31.2% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 16.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 86.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.8 males.
The median income for a household in the borough was $26,339, and the median income for a family was $32,500. Males had a median income of $36,667 versus $19,712 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $14,687. About 9.4% of families and 15.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.1% of those under age 18 and 13.1% of those age 65 or over.
West Jefferson Hills School District
The West Jefferson Hills School District is a midsized, suburban, public school system for residents of Jefferson Hills, West Elizabeth, and Pleasant Hills. Each of these South Hills communities are suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. West Jefferson Hills School District encompasses approximately 20 square miles. Per the 2015 local census data, it serves a resident population of 20,500. School district officials reported, in school year 2015–16, that the West Jefferson Hills School District provided basic educational services to 2,863 pupils through the employment of 205 teachers, 122 full-time and part-time support personnel, and 17 administrators.
The West Jefferson School Board is constituted of volunteer members who serve four-year terms after being elected to office. The school board works to set policy and long range plans for the district. The current members of the board are Brian Fernandes, Board President; Suzanne Downer, Board Vice President; David Dominick, Board Vice President; Jill Bertini; Carolyn Bourgeois; Kerri Gonot; John Hosmer; Anna Louise Lilley; and Darlene Schreiber. The school district solicitor is Robert McTiernan of Tucker Arensberg.
West Jefferson Hills School District was ranked 50th out of 500 Pennsylvania school districts for student academic achievement, by the Pittsburgh Business Times in 2014. The ranking was based on the last three years of student academic performance on the PSSAs for: math, reading, writing and science.The PSSAs are given to all children in grades 3rd through 8th and the 11th grade in high school. Adapted examinations are given to children in the special education programs.
2013 – 51st
2012 - 49th.
- Overachiever statewide ranking
In 2014, the Pittsburgh Business Times also reported an Overachievers Ranking for 500 Pennsylvania school districts. West Jefferson Hills School District ranked 309th. In 2013, the District ranked 318. In 2012, the District was ranked 299th.  The editor describes the ranking as: "a ranking answers the question - which school districts do better than expectations based upon economics? This rank takes the Honor Roll rank and adds the percentage of students in the district eligible for free and reduced-price lunch into the formula. A district finishing high on this rank is smashing expectations, and any district above the median point is exceeding expectations."
- Regional ranking
The West Jefferson Hills School District was ranked 17th out of 105 Western Pennsylvania School Districts in 2015, by the Pittsburgh Business Times. The ranking was based on the last three years of student academic performance on the PSSAs for: math, reading, writing and science. (includes 105 districts in: Allegheny County, Armstrong County, Beaver County,Butler County, Fayette County, Washington County and Westmoreland County excludes Duquesne City School District & Midland Borough School District due to no high schools)
2012 - 17th
In 2012, West Jefferson Hills School District’s graduation rate was 96%. In 2011, the District's graduation rate was 93.6%.
In 2010, the Pennsylvania Department of Education issued a new, 4-year cohort graduation rate. West Jefferson Hills School District's rate was 93% for 2010.
According to traditional graduation rate calculations:
- 2010 – 98%
- 2009 – 98%
- 2008 – 97%
- 2007 – 97%
Thomas Jefferson High School
Thomas Jefferson High School serves grades nine through twelve with a current enrollment of approximately 883 students in a community of approximately 20,500 residents, comprising West Elizabeth, Jefferson Hills and Pleasant Hills Borough. There are 74 full time faculty and staff working at the school to support a strong core academic focus with a variety of elective experiences. The building and facilities have been updated through various renovations. The most recent project was the reconstruction of the stadium. This included the field and track area as well as the stands and press box. A field house was also added at this time.Thomas Jefferson High School is well known for high academic standards and competitive athletic programs. Approximately seventy percent of graduating seniors go on to four-year college programs. Construction of a new high school building is currently underway with an anticipated opening for the 2018 – 19 school year.
Pennsylvania Department of Education, Membership on College Entrance Examination Board, Member of the Association of College Admissions Counselors and Pennsylvania Association of College Admissions Counselors
Thomas Jefferson High School offers a comprehensive college preparation program of studies. Business and Technical courses are provided at the Steel Center Vocational/Technical School.
Advanced Placement courses of the College Board are offered in Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, English Language, English Literature, European History, Calculus, Physics, Studio Art and US History.
Four years of study are offered in each of two languages: French and Spanish. A well-rounded program of electives is available for students in all curricular areas. Students are encouraged to carefully review course offerings available and make selections based on their post-secondary goals.
A survey completed by the senior class of 2015 yielded the following results:
- 69.3% plan to enroll in a four year college/university
- 13.2% plan to enroll full time at a 2 year college or community college
- 6.3% are undecided
- 4.4% plan to enlist in a branch of the military
- 2.4% plan to pursue full time employment
- 2.4% chose “Other”
- 2% plan to enroll in a trade/technical school or an apprentice program
Pleasant Hills Middle School
Pleasant Hills Middle School is located in the Pleasant Hills Borough at 404 Old Clairton Road. The school serves students in sixth, seventh, and eighth grades. The school was constructed in 1965 and recently celebrated its 50th Anniversary. A major renovation was completed in 2004 providing an upgrade to classrooms, facilities and additional learning spaces. According to the PA Department of Education’s School Performance Profile, the school’s enrollment in 2014 was 684 students. Twenty three percent of those students receive a federal free or reduced price lunch due to family poverty. The school employs forty seven teachers.
Jefferson Elementary School
Jefferson Elementary School currently has an enrollment of approximately 550 students in grades K-5 and implements a half day Kindergarten program. Each of the grade levels has four sections, which the exception of Kindergarten which is split into 5 sections (3 A.M. and 2 P.M.). In addition to the core academic areas, students attend art, music, physical education, and library on a weekly rotation. Additionally, students also will have the opportunity to participate in an instrumental band and choral program beginning in fourth grade.
Gill Hall Elementary
Gill Hall Elementary is one of three K-5 elementary schools in the West Jefferson Hills School District. Gill Hall was originally built in 1955 with only 8 classrooms, and was renovated in 1962, 1992, and 2002.
Mrs. Mayer has been the principal of Gill Hall since 2007. Staffing consists of 11 regular education teachers, 1 Special Education teacher, 1 Reading Specialist, 1 itinerant gifted support teacher, and 1 itinerant speech teacher. Itinerant music, art, physical Education, and library teachers are also staffed. There are two classrooms at each grade level, with class size ranging from 20-26.
McClellan Elementary School
The doors to McClellan Elementary opened on January 3, 1956, when there were only 165 students in grades 1-6. As the population continued to increase, McClellan has undergone three renovations (in 1958, 1981 and 2002). McClellan Elementary currently has a population of approximately 433 students in grades Kindergarten through fifth, with a staff of 38 educators. This includes 18 classroom teachers, 2 tutorial reading teachers, 2 special education teachers, 4 para-professionals, 2 PCAs, and 1 physical education teacher.
Thomas Jefferson High School has a long history of sports. The school's football team won the state title in 1980, 2004, 2007, and 2008. The Jaguars won the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association boys soccer championship in 2002.
On the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League (WPIAL) level Thomas Jefferson has also achieved significant success. Thomas Jefferson's WPIAL team championships include:
|Football||AAA||1980, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2015|
|Boys Soccer||AA||2001, 2002, 2004|
|Girls Track||AA||1987, 1988, 1991|
- "Race, Hispanic or Latino, Age, and Housing Occupancy: 2010 Census Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File (QT-PL), West Elizabeth borough, Pennsylvania". U.S. Census Bureau, American FactFinder 2. Retrieved September 26, 2011.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- History of Allegheny County Pennsylvania. pp. 82–84.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016.
- "Population of Civil Divisions Less than Counties" (PDF). 1880 United States Census. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 24 November 2013.
- "Population-Pennsylvania" (PDF). U.S. Census 1910. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- "Number and Distribution of Inhabitants:Pennsylvania-Tennessee" (PDF). Fifteenth Census. U.S. Census Bureau.
- "Number of Inhabitants: Pennsylvania" (PDF). 18th Census of the United States. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- "Pennsylvania: Population and Housing Unit Counts" (PDF). U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.