Butte: Education and Research

Elementary and Secondary Schools

The public elementary and secondary school system in Butte is Butte School District #1. The district is overseen by an eight-member elected school board and is administered by a superintendent appointed by the board. In 2005 the district was comprised of seven elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school. The district considers itself one of the most technologically advanced in Montana, with 100 percent internet access for all students. The district offers a full range of after-school latchkey and enrichment programs, adult education, and a unique Retired Seniors Volunteer Program (R.S.V.P.) that brings local retirees together with students to form tutoring and mentoring relationships.

The following is a summary of data regarding Butte's public schools as of the 2002–2003 school year.

Total enrollment: 4,936

Number of facilities elementary schools: 7

middle schools: 1

senior high schools: 1

other: 1

Student/teacher ratio: 16.8:1 (elementary and middle school); 15.8: 1 (high school)

Teacher salaries (state figure, 2002-2003) average: $35,754

Funding per pupil: $5,863 elementary; $8,298 high school

Several religious and secular parochial elementary and high schools provide alternatives to public education in the Butte metropolitan area.

Public Schools Information: Butte School District #1, 111 North Montana, Butte, MT 59701; telephone (406)496-2000

Colleges and Universities

Montana Tech of the University of Montana, originally chartered as the Montana State School of Mines, comprises three colleges, one school, and the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology. Montana Tech offers 6 certificate, 9 associates, 19 bachelors, and 11 masters programs. With a 2005 enrollment of 2100 students, the school conducts basic and applied research and provides graduates with degrees in such fields as geophysical engineering, mineral processing, and petroleum engineering. Butte Vo Tech, formerly independent but now under the umbrella of Montana Tech and the University of Montana, offers career training in a number of vocations, including data processing, practical nursing, and automotive mechanics technology. Both Montana State University-Bozeman and the University of Montana in Missoula are within a two-hour drive of Butte.

Libraries and Research Centers

The Butte-Silver Bow Library is located in Butte. Holdings consist of 75,000 volumes and nearly 200 periodical subscriptions, with special collections relating to Montana architecture, historic preservation, and fishing. The library is the headquarters for the Montana Public Library Film Service. The Butte-Silver Bow Public Archives holds information on local families and history, plus more than 30 labor history and 70 personal collections. The Historic Hearst Free Library in Anaconda offers more than 43,000 volumes, 66 periodicals, 16 newspapers, and a repository of historic memorabilia.

The Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology Library houses nearly 50,000 volumes, 78,446 maps, and 425,636 documents including paper, microform, and electronic media. The library is a depository for federal and state government documents. In addition, the Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology conducts research activities in such fields as water resources, earthquakes, mines, and geology. Butte is home to the National Center for Appropriate Technology Research Library. Most of the other libraries and research centers in the city also specialize in energy and technology.

Public Library Information: Butte-Silver Bow Library, 226 West Broadway Street, Butte, MT 59701; telephone (406)723-3361