Before the founding of Hamasdegh Armenian School, the Washington D.C. community provided Armenian lessons to students at Roosevelt High School and later on in homes.
In 1967, a small group of dedicated leaders in the community, with the goal of preserving Armenianness and knowledge that an Armenian school was necessary to teach the language, created a committee who set the foundation for the one day Armenian school who would later come to be known as “Համաստեղ Հայ Դպրոց”. The founding members of this committee were
- Mr. Kourken Asadourian
- Mr. Haig Gakavian
- Mr. Onnig Marashlian
- Mr. Jirayr Haroutounian
- Mr. Sarkis Nazarian
- Mr. Levon Palian
- Dr. Barkev Kibarian
In 1967, the Arabian and Agnouni halls found at Soorp Khatch Church were built. In December of the same year, the Armenian classes began. Under the same roof, there was already an Armenian Sunday school for English speakers that already took place under the auspices of Der Dikran Avak Kahana Khoyan. In the 1976-1977 school year, the two schools merged into one. Per Mr. Kourken Asadourian’s suggestion, the school was named after the Armenian American writer, Hamasdegh (Hampartsoum Gelenian 1895-1966). In October of 1968, Hamasdegh School only had 17 students, 3 teachers and a principal. Over the years, the numbers of students grew as large numbers of families immigrated to the United States from the Middle East. The parent teacher association also formed in the future years.
Currently, Hamasdegh Armenian School has 91 students, 14 teachers, 2 substitute teachers, a principal, and an administrative assistant/treasurer. Classes begin mid-September and end mid-July. Students attend for 10 years, from pre-k to 8th grade. Every Sunday students begin their day in the Soorp Khatch Church Sanctuary for morning prayer and lessons from the Bible and about Armenian Apostolic church traditions and Holy Days by Der Sarkis Kahana Aktavoukian.