Flint Central High School
|Flint Central High School|
|601 Crapo St.
Flint, Michigan, United States
|School district||Flint Community Schools|
|Enrollment||1450 and dropping|
|Campus size||43 acres (170,000 m2)|
|Color(s)||Red and Black|
|Athletics conference||Saginaw Valley League|
|Affiliation||Flint Community Schools|
Flint Central High School was one of the Flint Community Schools, located in Flint, Michigan, USA. Flint Central was the city's oldest school. Its first building was built in 1875, and the school moved into the present building in 1923. It was called Flint High School until Flint Northern High School was built in 1928. Approximately 2,000 students attended the school at its peak attendance, and about half that at the time of its closing. Graduation ceremonies were held at Whiting Auditorium. The school building is located in the East Village, near the corner of Crapo Street and Court Street.
Flint Central competed in the oldest athletic conference in the State of Michigan, the Saginaw Valley League. The football teams played their home games at Atwood Stadium in Flint. On certain nights when Atwood was already in use (also the home of Flint Northern and Flint Southwestern), Flint Central would host at their secondary home, Guy V. Houston Stadium, located near Flint Northwestern.
- Men's Basketball
- Men's Swimming
- Women's Volleyball
- Men's Wrestling
- Women's Basketball
- Cross Country
- Men's Football
- Women's Golf
- Men's Golf
- Women's Soccer
- Men's Soccer
- Women's Softball
- Women's Swimming
- Track & Field
From 1976 through 2001 the school's football coach was Joe Eufinger. His lifetime record was 138-102 which is the ninth highest win total amongst coaches in Genesee County.  Longtime Baseball coach Bob Holec is now leading the Flint Baseball Commission and is the Commissioner of the baseball contingent for the CANUSA Games. The Men's Basketball team was coached for many years by Stan Gooch. They won state championships in 1981, 1982 and 1983. He won over 500 games and is in numerous Halls of Fame. The softball team was led by Cuban refugee Margarita Calvo to an unprecedented 22 consecutive City League titles. The Flint Central tennis team won their first City Championship in more than 7 years in the Spring of 2007, and still maintained their position until the school was closed. Clem Rowe was the longtime successful Tennis Coach at the school. After years of struggling, the baseball team rebounded with a 15-win season in 2007, claiming the city series title, as well as runner up in the annual Greater Flint Tournament.
The Magnet Program for the Flint Community Schools ran the secondary school Theatre Program through Flint Central from 1976-2006. Prior to that Flint Central was long known as a leader in educational theatre locally, statewide and nationally. The program was led for many years by such notable teachers as Helen Hardy Brown, Maude Biegel, Jacqueline Oriet Kramer, Shirley Parola, James Olson, Jeanne Shoemaker and The Most notable and longest in the position was Martin W. Jennings who led the program from 1981-2006. It was during this time Central High School's Theatre program involved over 10,000 students for 25 years from all four of Flint's Comprehensive High Schools. From 1981 to 2006, over 127 full-scale theatre productions were staged including Broadway Musicals, Comedies, Dramas, One-Acts, Student Written Works, The Vehicle City, Improv Troupe and 10 works of William Shakespeare.
The program generally produced three productions every year, in addition to a magnet student showcase which raised thousands of dollars for a fine arts scholarship in the name of Donn Jensen, a supporter of the program who died in 1997. The theatre students of Flint Central have performed internationally and in numerous states. In 1989 and 1991, The Educational Theatre Association named Flint Central's Theatre Program as one of the top six high school theatre programs in the country. The theatre has also had an affiliated membership with The International Thespian Society (Troupe #575) since 1925. Many Alumni have gone on to have careers in the theatre. After changes made by the school board in 2006 to reform the school district, the magnet program was dissolved. In the fall of 2006, Rhonda Young was named director of the theatre program. Gina Morris Cicalo, longtime director of Whittier Theatre Magnet Program, was appointed theatre teacher at Flint Central for the 2008-09 school year. During her time at Central, theatre productions were not able to be staged due to facility-damage in the auditorium and scene shop.
The mascot of Flint Central High School since 1928 was the Indian. In 2001 the Flint Board of Education voted to phase out school mascots that made reference to Native Americans in all of Flint's schools. This affected other school mascots as well including the Pierce Elementary School Arrows (although the mascot name is a reference to the automobile model, not the weapon), and the Whittier Junior High School Braves. The changeover was completed for the 2005-2006 school year.
In April 2009 the Board of Education voted to close the school due to declining enrollment and maintenance costs. As Central High School is one of the oldest buildings in the district, it was cited as costly to maintain and renovate. Several other schools in the district were closed as well, all of which were elementary schools.
The last day of classes at Flint Central High School was on June 11, 2009. The following day, a farewell ceremony was held at the school for alumni to walk the halls one last time. The building has been closed indefinitely, which was met with great backlash from the current students, parents and alumni. At the time of the closure, the Flint Schools put out a statement saying that Central could re-open in five years with several renovations. That, however, was deemed untrue as the Flint Schools cannot afford to re-open Central, and due to declining enrollment district-wide, the FCS may have to close another high school, as well.
- Lynn Chandnois, Class of 1943 - 1st round draft pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers after playing college football at Michigan State University.
- Dale Kildee, Class of 1947, and later a teacher at Flint Central - Member of the United States House of Representatives 1977–present.
- Casey Kasem, noted radio personality.
- Donald Riegle, Class of 1956 - United States Senator 1976 - 1995.
- Ron Pruitt, Class of 1967 - Professional Baseball Player for 9 seasons.
- Herb Washington, Class of 1968 - Former World Record Holder 60 yard dash. Played professional baseball for the Oakland Athletics.
- Eric Turner, Class of 1981 - Second Place Mr. Basketball, played at the University of Michigan.
- Jim Abbott, Class of 1985 - Professional baseball player, pitched no-hitter for New York Yankees. Distinguishing feature because he was born with only one hand.
- Coquese Washington, Class of 1989 - Former WNBA player after playing at Notre Dame University. Was the first President of the WNBA Player Association. Presently the Head Women's Basketball Coach at Penn State University.
- Andre Weathers, Class of 1994 - Former professional football player with the New York Giants; played in the Super Bowl in 2001. Won a National Championship in 1997 playing for the University of Michigan.
- LaKisha Jones, Class of 1998 - American Idol finalist
- Don Coleman, Class of 1949 - First Michigan State University Spartan football player to have his jersey retired and distinguished educator - former MSU Dean of Students.
- Lloyd Brazil -- All-American halfback for the University of Detroit, 1927–1929
- Clarence (Kelly) Johnson, Class of 1928, considered our Nation's Greatest Aerospace Engineer, formed the Skunk Works for Lockheed Aircraft in Burbank, California and designed many outstanding aircraft such as: the SR-71 Blackbird, U-2 Spyplane, Lockheed Electra, P-38 Lightning, F-117A Nighthawk (stealth fighter), F-104 Starfighter, T-33 Trainer, and the C-130 Hercules transport.
- Tony Branoff, Class of 1952, All State football player, 1953 MVP of the University of Michigan Football Team
- Jamarko Simmons Class of 2004, All-State football player, went onto play wide receiver for Western Michigan University. At one point was leading the NCAA in receptions during his junior season. School leader on the all-time receptions list. Signed as an undrafted free agent with the Green Bay Packers, but did not make the final roster. He won an Arena Football League championship with the Jacksonville Sharks in 2011. Just a few months later, Simmons won a United Football League championship with the Virginia Destroyers.
- George Hoey, Class of 1965, All-State football player. Former running back for the University of Michigan, as well as in the National Football League with the Arizona Cardinals, New England Patriots, San Diego Chargers, Denver Broncos, and New York Jets.
- Amir Mirza Hekmati, Class of 2001 - arrested by Iran on charges of spying on behalf of the Central Intelligence Agency.
- Lyric Da Queen, Class of 2007, Lead Female Rapper of Lyric145 on The X Factor.
- "School Board Moves to Change Mascots", The Flint Journal, [2001-11-20]