Classical High School
|Classical High School|
|Providence, Rhode Island, USA|
|Motto||Certare, Petere, Reperire, Neque Cedere/ To Strive, to Seek, to Find, and Not to Yield|
|Established||March 20, 1843|
|Color(s)||Purple and White|
Classical High School, founded in 1843, is a public magnet school in the Providence School District, in Providence, Rhode Island. It was originally an all-male school, but has since become co-ed. Classical's motto is Certare, Petere, Reperire, Neque Cedere, a Latin translation of the famous phrase taken from Tennyson's poem "Ulysses", "To Strive, to Seek, to Find, and Not to Yield". It has been rated "High Performing and Sustaining" by its performance in 2005 on the New Standards Reference Exam, placing third in the state. The school also made Newsweek’s America’s Best High Schools of 2012 with a 99% graduation rate, 95% college bound, an average SAT score of 1578 (31 on the ACT), and an average AP score of 2.8.  Classical High School stands roughly at the intersection of the Federal Hill, West End, and Upper South Providence neighborhoods.
Classical High School, a demanding college preparatory examination school, serves a diverse community and provides its students with the means to achieve high standards in a rigorous learning environment. Classical encourages its students to pursue academic, artistic, athletic, and personal growth so they will experience success in colleges and universities, and will demonstrate excellence in leadership within the community.
Classical High School's current building was finished in 1970 and is one of few buildings in the area created in the Brutalist architectural style, making it an adventitious addition to the West End neighborhood of Providence. The original school buildings had become outdated by the 1950s and after several fires and years of study, the city launched a competition for a new education complex in 1963. The winning design was by noted local architects Harkness & Geddes in collaboration with Walter Gropius, who founded The Architects Collaborative (TAC), the famous Boston architectural firm.
William McKenzie Woodward, a well-known architectural historian and staff member of the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission, does not agree aesthetically with the building, going so far as to write in his Guide to Providence Architecture, "It's no wonder Modernism has gotten such a bad reputation in Rhode Island because it smells very bad there." In 1986 McKenzie had however admitted in his survey for the Preservation Commission that "The new complex, the first of its kind in Providence built to serve a stable rather than expanding population, was well received as an ample and functional facility." Quoting John Ware Lincoln, then chairman of the Division of Design at Rhode Island School of Design as having noted: "The new Classical buildings are fine architecture, by the old standards, but they are also exemplary of the new concept of the architect as an environmental planner, working with social and civic sciences, demography, transportation engineering, building technologies, and, in this case, education philosophy."
The previous building (designed by Martin & Hall), a yellow brick building with a peaked roof (under which was the study hall), was considerably smaller and was bounded by Pond Street which was consumed in the creation of the new campus. When the old building was razed the yellow bricks were sold to students and alumni.
- John Orlando Pastore (Class of 1925) — Former Governor of Rhode Island, United States Senator
- S. J. Perelman (Class of 1922) — American Humorist
- Bruce Sundlun (Class of 1938) — Former Governor of Rhode Island
- Rudolph Fisher (Class of 1915) — pioneering Black radiologist and writer of the Harlem Renaissance
- Irving R. Levine (Class of 1940) — Former NBC News Economics Correspondent
- Frank Licht (Class of 1934) — Former Governor of Rhode Island
- George Macready — American actor
- A. O. Scott — Chief New York Times Movie Critic
- Stanley Fish — Literary theorist and legal scholar
- Michael Kang (Class of 1988) — Filmmaker
- George Macready (Class of 1917) — Film Actor
- C. M. Eddy, Jr. — Renowned Author
- Lauren Corrao (Class of 1979) — President of original programming and development for Comedy Central. Former Fox executive, helped develop That '70s Show and Mad TV
- Paul Mercurio/Mecurio (Class of 1978) - Emmy Award and Peabody Award winning comedy writer, producer, director and performer.
- John M. Barry — Historian & Author
- Robin Green — Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning television producer for The Sopranos and Northern Exposure, among others.
- Angel Taveras (Class of 1988) — First Latino Mayor of Providence
- Steve Cascione (Class of 1972) — Meteorologist
- John W. Dower (Class of 1956) — Pulitzer Prize winner
- June Foray (Class of 1935) — Voice Actress
- Ronald Dworkin (Class of 1949) — Legal Philosopher & Professor at NYU
- Jorge O. Elorza (Class of 1994) — Professor at the Roger Williams University School of Law and on the Board of Directors of the Rhode Island Foundation.
- Amy Diaz (Class of 2002) — co-host of “Social Women” & Miss Earth United States 2009
- Raymond Armstrong (Class of 1942) — Former financial advisor to President Ronald Reagan
- Clark Sammartino (Class of 1955) — Founder of Donated Dental Services and former Chief of Oral Surgery for RI Hospitals
- Robert Wittes (Class of 1960) — Former Physician-in-Chief - Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
- Susan West Kurz (Class of 1967) — Co-Founder - Dr. Hauschka Skin Care, Inc.
- Shelley Woods Whiting (Class of 1987) —Director - Commercial Development, Marketing & Sustainability, Georgia - Pacific Chemicals
- Joseph Tamburini (Class of 1988) — Senior Vice President, Financial Advisor at Morgan Stanley Wealth Management
- Ralph Thomas Walker (Class of 1907) — Architect, President of the American Institute of Architects and Partner of the firm McKenzie, Voorhees, Gmelin
- Melanie Sanford (Class of 1993) — American chemist, and Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Chemistry at University of Michigan
- Gordon D. Fox (Class of 1979) — American politician from Providence, Rhode Island and the Speaker of the Rhode Island House of Representatives
- James R. Winoker (Class of 1949) — President of B. B. Greenberg Co., a jewelry manufacturer in Providence, Rhode Island
- Karina Montilla Edmonds (Class of 1988) — Technology Transfer Coordinator at the United States Department of Energy
- Joe Nocera (Class of 1970) — American business journalist and author, business columnist for The New York Times
- John M. Barry (Class of 1964) — American author and historian
- Robin Green (Class of 1963) — Emmy Award-winning writer and producer; worked extensively on the HBO hit series The Sopranos; creator and executive producer for Blue Bloods.
- Bruce L. Paisner (Class of 1960) — Previously Head of the Entertainment and Syndication Group at the Hearst Corporation in New York City, now senior advisor; also the President and CEO of the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
- Frederick and Dorothy Petrie Irving (Class of 1939) — "a team in the United States Foreign Service, where Fred advanced to become Assistant Secretary of State, Ambassador to Iceland and Ambassador to Jamaica"
- Bernard Bell (Class of 1938) — National Hospice Organization Person of the Year in 1991.
- Allan Fung (Class of 1988) — American politician and the current mayor of Cranston, Rhode Island
- Rabbi Avis Dimond Miller (Class of 1962) — the first woman to assume a pulpit in the American Conservative Judaism movement
- Vincent A. Sarni (Class of 1945) — served as CEO of PPG Industries
- Kendra A. King (Class of 1990) — Author, professor and speaker
- Tom Ohanian — Film editor, inventor, and published author
- Elizabeth Burke Bryant (Class of 1975) — Executive Director of Rhode Island Kids Count
- Bruce M. Selya (Class of 1951) — senior federal judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and chief judge of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review
- Vernon Alden (Class of 1941) — Scholar, philanthropist, and 15th president of Ohio University
- Joan Nathan (Class of 1961) — Award-winning Author of cookbooks & Producer TV documentaries on the subject of Jewish cuisine
- Gilbert V. Indeglia (Class of 1959) — Justice on the Rhode Island Supreme Court
- Joel Cohen (musician) (Class of 1959) — American musician specializing in early music repertoires
- Richard Walton (Class of 1946) — American writer, teacher, and politician.
- Edmund Delabarre — Researcher and Professor of Psychology at Brown University
- Hannah Weiner (Class of 1946) — American poet
- Frederick Irving (Class of 1939) — United States Ambassador to Iceland from 1972 to 1976, Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs from 1976 to 1977, and United States Ambassador to Jamaica from 1977 to 1978.
- Jeff Buzzerio — Founding partner of Lunch Pail Capital
- Arnold Bromberg — Vice President at Benny’s, Inc.
- Samuel Zurier (Class of 1976) — Providence City Councilman (2011-present)
- Classical High School - Providence, Rhode Island/RI - Public School Profile
- www.eride.ri.gov/.../high%20school%20classifications%202005%20V2.pdf Rhode Island Department of Education 2005 High School Classification
-  Newsweek’s America’s Best High Schools of 2012
- Woodward, William McKenzie (2003). PPS/AIAri Guide to Providence Architecture. Providence, RI: Providence Preservation Society. p. 207. ISBN 0-9742847-0-X.
- William McKenzie Woodward and Edward F Sanderson; Providence, a Citywide Survey of Historical Resources; Rhode Island Historic Preservation Commission, 1986
- Fish (Class of 1956), Stanley (June 7, 2010). "A Classical Education: Back to the Future". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-06-09.
- Classical High School's Official Website
- Classical Athletics Website
- Classical Alumni Website
- Classical's Student-run Website
- Providence Schools - Classical High School Website
- GreatSchools.net info page
- Quick Fact Sheet
- NSRE RI High Schools Listing For 2005