Hughes Junior High School opened in 1949 to serve 750 seventh, eighth, and ninth graders from the surrounding neighborhood of Bixby Knolls/California Heights, a well-established upscale community. The school's reputation for academic excellence has been maintained despite many changes in school demographics and public expectations. In 1989, Hughes welcomed sixth graders and became Hughes Middle School.
The student body now numbers over 1500 and represents extremes in socioeconomic backgrounds, diverse ethnicities, and a wide range of academic capabilities. Hughes serves students from families with longevity in the community as well as students whose families are newcomers. The current student body is 28 % Hispanic or Latino, 25% African American, 24% white (non-Hispanic), 13% Asian, 9% Filipino, and 1% Pacific Islander. Six percent of our student population are eligible for special education services, forty percent qualify for free/reduced lunch and 428 students have a primary language other than English.