Bel Alton High


Three $1000 and Six $500 Scholarships

Our School

The Bel Alton High School Alumni Association is proud to offer scholarships to Charles County's graduating high school seniors and other young adults in honor of our founders.

Our founders saved an important part of black cultural history in Charles County. They boldly interceded with the Charles County government in the late 1980s to stop its planned demolition of our historic Bel Alton High School building, raised six million dollars to restore the building, and operated a community center in the building from 2008 to 2015.

The Bel Alton High School was one of two segregated high schools that offered a secondary-level education for the 'colored children' of Charles County. The school opened in 1938, during the pre-WWII 'Jim Crow' era, and ran until the County integrated schools in 1966.

The Bel Alton High School is the only Historically Black High School in Charles County whose original building structure is still fully intact. The school building and the black community it served are important parts of Charles County's heritage.

The Bel Alton High School Alumni Association, in honor of its founders and the cultural history of the Bel Alton High School, is pleased to offer scholarships to help students defray some of the cost of pursing their educational goals.

We also hope that our Scholarship program will help us to preserve, promote, and share the cultural history of the historic Bel Alton High School and the Black community it served.

Apply For Scholarship - 2024 Program

Matthews N. Wills, Chair
T. Jerome Short, Vice Chair
Joseph Johnson, Treasurer
Mary Whalen, Secretary

Joyce M. Brown, Chair
Lisa Ambers
Joseph Johnson
Matthews N. Wills
T. Jerome Short

Why Should You Become a Member?


The only remaining Historically Black High School building in Charles County is Bel Alton High School. And we can thank the founders of the Bel Alton High School Alumni Association (pictured below) for that. Members of the Association that was founded in 1993, stopped the planned demolition of the historic school, restored the building, and ran a community center at the site. Charles County built the school in 1938 for children and closed it in 1966 after schools were integrated.

The cultural history of Bel Alton includes the school building, the lives of its students, teachers, and staff. Also, the schools cultural history includes the Black community of Charles County that it served during the segregated Jim Crow era. We refuse to let this history fade away.


If you attended or worked at Bel Alton Senior/Junior High School or Bel Alton Elementary School prior to 1966, you and your spouse and relatives are eligible to apply for a regular membership in the Association. We also welcome other individuals, businesses, and community organizations, who support our mission, to join as associate members. The membership application is attached.

Click For Membership Application

85th Anniversary Celebration

The Bel Alton High School Before Renovation

Before Construction

The Charles County government had planned to demolish the historic Bel Alton High School building due to its deteriorating condition. The school had been in existence as a segregated  black High School  from 1938 until schools in Charles County were integrated in 1965. In the early 1990s, a courageous and spirited group of Bel Alton High School alumni stepped forward and convinced county officials not to tear down their former High School  because it was a symbol of their African -American heritage in Charles County. The county agreed, and the Bel Alton High School Alumni Association began the process of obtaining  over six (6) million dollars of state and federal funding to renovate the  school building and to operate a community development  center to serve low income residents.

Renovation Project

The renovation project, which included the school building and a public water and sewage system, began in the spring of 2004 and was completed  in  May of 2008. The Bel Alton Alumni Association / Bel Alton CDC secured over six (6) million in federal and state funding for the renovation project.

The Bel Alton High School Renovation The Bel Alton High School Renovation Close Up The Bel Alton High School Renovation From Side


The mission of the Bel Alton High School Community Development Corporation is to rehabilitate our former High School and to establish programs that help people with low income improve the quality of their lives.  Workforce development, jobs creation, health education and dental services are the primary means to accomplish our mission.

Learn More About The Bel Alton High School

Donations Table


We welcome donations to our nonprofit organization that will help us maintain and expand our program offerings and help us achieve our mission more readily. All board members are senior citizen volunteers who have worked with the CDC for over 20 years. Several board members also serve as staff. We need more volunteers to help us, as well as donations of $5, $10, $15 or whatever you have in your heart to give. Renovating our school has already made a big difference in improving the appearance and adding value to the Bel Alton community. However we must do more. With your financial support we will. Make a donation today. If you prefer to contribute by mail, send a check to Bel Alton High School Community Development, P.O. Box 2614, La Plata, MD 20646. You may also donate online. 


Call us at (301) 539-7900 for further information.

Banquet Room Banquet Tables


Thank you for your interest. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

(301) 539-7900
(240) 523-3301

Toll Free
(888) 451-3784

9501 Crain Hwy
Bel Alton, MD 20611

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