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At A Glance

Founded in 1968, Edmund Burke School enrolls 315 students in grades 6-12 (approximately 90 in the Middle School and 225 in the High School) on a city campus in Van Ness, Washington, DC. With a student / teacher ratio of 6:1 and average class size of 14, Burke is a place where each individual is known and engaged.

... Now, how about some lesser-known facts?

List of 15 items.

  • 7

    grade-wide civic engagement programs
  • 11

    junior & senior history electives
  • 0

    students cut from plays and sports teams
  • 14

    minutes to Rock Creek Park & Peirce Mill on foot
  • 36

    different colleges and universities attended by the class of 2023
  • 40

    percent students of color in 22-23
  • 59

    zip codes represented in 23-24
  • 18

    display spaces dedicated to 3D and 2D art work
  • 2

    mascots - one official and one less so
  • 12

    bands and choruses across all grades
  • 58

    different schools sending new students to Burke in 23-24
  • 20

    advisor meetings per student annually
  • 3

    different math pathways offered in 7th and 8th grade
  • 13

    computer science independent projects in 22-23
  • 1

    winner in school-wide musical chairs in fall 2023

List of 5 items.

  • Where did Edmund Burke School get its name?


    In a 1961 speech to the Canadian Parliament, President John F. Kennedy said,

    "At the conference table and in the minds of men, the Free World's cause is strengthened because it is just. But it is strengthened even more by the dedicated efforts of free men and free nations. As the great parliamentarian Edmund Burke said, 'The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.' And that in essence is why I am here today."

    Our school's founders also drew inspiration from that saying and built a school committed to civic engagement and action. While often attributed directly to Edmund Burke, the phrase likely derives from his writings in April 1770: "When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle."
  • Does Burke have a large campus?

    Our campus is a great size (and in a great location) for us. The school consists of three connected buildings, extending down Upton Street from Connecticut Avenue NW.

    The four-story building directly on Connecticut mainly houses the middle school, plus an underground parking garage. A pedestrian bridge (aka: "Albert's Alley") connects to the Library and Atrium spaces, which are an extension of the original school building at 2955 Upton Street. That building mainly houses the high school and the Gym (renovated in 2021-22). Our athletic teams use Howard Field, which is just down the block, as well as the UDC Pool.
  • What is Burke's mascot?

    We somehow wound up with two. Our official athletic mascot is the Burke Bengal Tiger. (Did you know adult bengals can grow to 10.5 feet long and 650 pounds?) However, we also have Little Ned, a dancing 6th grader in a powdered wig, who makes an appearance at Homecoming annually. 
  • Does Burke have a football team?

    The Bengals remain undefeated on the football field since 1968.

    (... We don't have a football team.)
  • What are Burke's "entry years?"

    Everyone is new in 6th grade, and the grade generally grows by 20-25% in 7th grade and then doubles in 9th grade – so there are numerous opportunities to make new friends. We also welcome several new students in 8th, 10th, and 11th annually.

How about a sample of curricula?

List of 6 items.

  • 6th Grade Core - Humanities

    Blues musicians included in study of the Great Migration:

    Big Bill Broonzy (1903-1958)
    Howlin' Wolf (1910-1976)
    Lightnin’ Hopkins (1912-1982)
    Muddy Waters (1913-1983)
    Robert Johnson (1911-1938)
    Son House (1902-1988)
  • 8th Grade Visual Arts Electives

    Recent & Upcoming Offerings

    3-D Explorations
    Ceramics
    Chorus
    Comedy
    Digital Illustration
    Digital Photography
    Filmmaking
    Instrumental Music
    Play Production
    Photography
    Stagecraft
    Urban Alchemy
  • Advanced Placement (AP) Chemistry

    Seventeen laboratory experiments include:

    • Determination of Equivalent Mass of a Metal by Electrolysis
    • Determination of the Standard Enthalpy and Entropy Changes in a Chemical Reaction
    • Preparation and Interpretation of Titration Curves
    • Preparation and Properties of Buffer Solutions
    •  Spectrophotometric Determination of the Rate Law for the Reaction of Phenolphthalein with Sodium Hydroxide
  • American Supernatural Literature

    Spring 2022 Core Texts

    Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle
    Bloodchild by Octavia Butler
    Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff
    October Country by Ray Bradbury
    The Complete Lovecraft by H. P. Lovecraft
    The King in Yellow by Robert Chambers
    The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
    The Red Tree by Caitlin Kiernan
    The Weird ed. Ann & Jeff VanderMeer
    Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
  • High School Computer Science Electives

    Recent & Upcoming Courses

    3D Game Development
    Artificial Intelligence
    Augmented Reality
    Build Your Own Computer
    Ethical Hacking
    Independent Project
    Python Projects
    Smart Devices
    Social Media & Big Data
    Web App Development
  • High School Singing in the Spotlight

    Solos frim the Spring 2022 vocal concert:

    "Dyin' Ain’t So Bad" from Bonnie & Clyde
    "Dear Maria" by All Time Low
    "Stupid With Love"" from Mean Girls
    "Dos Oruguitas" from Encanto
    "Hor Ich Das Liedchen" by Shumann
    "Mi Buen Amor"
    "Fine" from Ordinary Days
    "Last Midnight" from Into the Woods
    "I Love You" by Billie Eilish

Additional Facts

List of 3 items.

List of 1 items.

  • Discover More at Burke

    Get To Know Us ...
Co-ed, progressive, college prep school in Washington, DC featuring a challenging curriculum in an inclusive environment for grades 6-12.