Ray Borane Middle School's Historical History

What is now Ray Borane Middle School began as Douglas High School in 1909. That year, voters approved what was the school district's fifth-ever bond issue for $62,500. Of that total, $30,000 was for the high school.

The school board authorized an additional $7,500 to pay for the building's heating and ventilation system. Construction went rapidly enough that classes were held int he two-story yellow brick building a few weeks before the Class of 1910 graduated.

In 1916, 2o4kers constructed an annex on the original building's north side. This addition housed the manual arts department, that is the metal and wood-working shops.

In 1918, a $300,000 bond financed three additions to the campus. Two domestic science (home economics) classrooms went on the east side of the original building on the ground floor, and two science laboratories on the second floor. Seven classrooms were added to the west side of the building.

The third addition, on the northwest portion of the block separate from the main building, was a small gymnasium. It was erected in time to host a ROTC program created during the patriotic fervor surrounding World War I.

The school's present gym was built in 1938. It cost $110,0000, with 55 percent of the money coming from a 1937 bond issue, and the rest from a Public Works Administration grant. The PWA as a Depression-era federal government agency.

Dedicated during the 1938 Labor Day celebration, the gym received praise for its full-size basketball courts with hardwood floor, and equal dressing room facilities for boys and girls. The building included a wrestling/boxing room, three classrooms, ana kitchen and cafeteria.

In 1948, voters approved a $640,000 bond issue with the majority of the money going toward construction of a new high school on the north side of 15th Street between Dolores and Florida avenues. Following the December 1948 dedication of the new campus, grades 10, 11 and 12 moved to the new school.

At the start of the 1949-50 school year, the building which had been Douglas High School for 40 y ears, became Douglas Junior High School. Its students were in grades seven, eight and nine. In 1959, the ninth grade moved to the high school.

The final addition to the junior high school's physical plant took place in 1963. Originally planned as a two-story addition to connect the gym with the main school building, only one story of three classrooms was built because of cost overrides at Stevenson School, which was constructed at the same time.

The junior high became Ray Borane Middle School in 1993. It was renamed for a former Douglas School Superintendent, Arizona Deputy State Superintendent, President of the State Board of Education, and Assistant to the President of Norther Arizona University (NAU).

-Ms. Cindy Hayostek, District Historical Researcher


Kay Gregor, "Douglas Schools", The Cochise Quarterly, (June & Sept. 1974).

"History of Douglas Public Schools Is Filled with Determination for Best", Douglas International, (Dec. 2, 1922).

"Dedication of $110,000 High School Gymnasium Will Be Feature of Labor Day Celebration In Douglas Sept. 5", Douglas Dispatch, (Aug. 7, 1938).

G. Genevieve Wiggins, "A History of the Douglas Public Schools, 1901-1965", Copy in possession of author.