Leslie Middle School is named after the Reverend David Leslie.
He was born in New Hampshire in 1797. He was a missionary
in Oregon in 1837 and moved to Salem in 1843. Reverend Leslie
was one of the founders of Willamette University and he was
a minister to the first church in Salem.
Leslie Middle School opened its doors on September 19, 1927.
At its original location on Howard Street it served 401 students
that first year. Over the years it added a swimming
pool, gymnasium, and cafeteria and became a center of middle
school education in Salem. At its peak enrollment, Leslie
Middle School had an enrollment of 1,530 students in 1956.
In 1993, as the enrollment of the adjoining South Salem High
School continued to grow, the school district decided to use
bond money to build a new Leslie School at its current site
on Pringle Road. After a prolonged legal challenge to this
siting, the land was acquired and the new Leslie School was
built at 3850 Pringle Road South. Because of the siting issues,
the building opened in the fall of 1997 with 725 students,
which put it under capacity as many of Leslie's 8th grade
students were finishing their middle school years elsewhere.
In 1998 Leslie's full complement of students returned and
enrollment grew to 845 students. As of October 1999 there
are 887 students at Leslie. Leslie's elementary feeder system
consists of Bush, Richmond, McKinley, Morningside, and Candalaria
schools. In addition, students from private and parochial
schools may feed into Leslie after their elementary years.
All of Leslie's students move into South Salem High School
Leslie Middle School has a staff of 79, with grades 6 through
8 in attendance. The principal is Mr. Mike Miller and the
assistant principal is Ms. Ruth Gilge. Leslie's nickname is
Because of changing demographics, Leslie is a very different
school than it was in 1996. The result of this change
has been to create a dynamic, exciting environment where students
from many different ethnic and socio-economic groups work
and learn together. Working with students and the community
to make all students feel a part of Leslie and celebrate the
diversity that is Leslie School is a primary goal for Leslie
staff and its supportive parents.
Miller, Mike." Leslie History 1927-1999," Leslie
Middle August, 2000.
"Neighborhood Schools" Statesman
Journal, August, 2000.
"The Salem Story," Salem - Keizer Public Schools.