Glenbrook North High School

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Glenbrook North High School
We Educate For Living
2300 Shermer Road
Northbrook, Illinois, 60062
United States
Coordinates 42°06′41″N 87°50′03″W / 42.11133°N 87.83422°W / 42.11133; -87.83422
School type public secondary
Opened 1952
School district Glenbrook High School District 225[1]
Superintendent Dr. Michael Riggle[2]
Principal Dr. Paul Pryma[3]
Staff 321[4]
Grades 9–12
Gender coed
Enrollment 2118[5]
Average class size 18.2[5]
Campus suburban
School colour(s)      forest green
     yellow gold[6]
Athletics conference Central Suburban League
Mascot Sparty Jones[7]
Nickname Spartans[8]
Average ACT scores 26.3[9]
Publication Euphonium[10]
Newspaper Torch[10]
Yearbook Laconian'[10]

Glenbrook North High School, or GBN, is a public four-year high school located in Northbrook, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, Illinois, in the United States. It is part of Glenbrook Township High School District, which also includes Glenbrook South High School.


Glenbrook North High School, which opened its doors in the fall of 1952 as Glenbrook High School, serves the incorporated and unincorporated areas of Northbrook.

Today, Glenbrook North High School, along with Glenbrook South, are noted for their outstanding curriculum and quality of education, having been repeatedly named to a variety of best-in-the-nation lists. For example, as part of the First in the World Consortium, GBN and GBS students scored first in the world in international math & science testing. In January 1997, President Bill Clinton visited GBN, and gave a speech discussing the need for more schools to adopt international education standards in math and science. See "Bill Clinton Visit" below.[11]

Glenbrook North alum John Hughes' 1985 film The Breakfast Club featured a group of kids from "Shermer, Illinois" 60062 (per the opening scene of the film). Shermerville was the original name of the town of Northbrook, where GBN is located, and 60062 is the zip code. The movie features the clash between what were known during the 1980s as the 'sporto' versus 'freak' cultures at GBN. Some think the movie was filmed inside the school, but it was filmed at Maine North High School, which was also used for the interior scenes of Ferris Bueller's Day Off.[citation needed] Exterior shots of GBN were used in both The Breakfast Club and the Ferris Bueller movie, however. A curious side note to all of this is that Charlie Schlatter, the actor who played Ferris in the TV series Ferris Bueller, is married to a GBN alumna who graduated in 1984.[citation needed]


The Glenbrook North debate team has won numerous state and national championships in Policy debate, as well as state championships in Lincoln-Douglas and Public Forum debate. The team is the only high school debate team in the country to win the triple crown of debate, winning the National Forensic League tournament, the Tournament of Champions and the National Christian Forensic League tournaments in 2004.[12] They were also ranked the top debate school of the century based on appearances in the National Forensics League final round.[13] In both 2010 and 2011, the school won two of the three state final championships for debate in the IHSA state tournament, in the Policy and Lincoln-Douglas divisions, in addition to winning novice and junior varsity final championships for debate in the ISTA state tournament in 2011. In 2012, the school won the New Trier tournament, and lost in finals of the novice and varsity divisions of the state tournament, while the school won the junior varsity division. The school had the top speaker in the junior varsity and varsity divisions in 2012. Glenbrook North also debated in the finals of the 2012 Tournament of Champions, losing on a 2-1 decision to West High School from Iowa City, Iowa. In the 2012-2013 school year, the team won the Blake tournament, locked out the finals of the IHSA Varsity State Tournament, had the top speaker and thus all-state debate captain, debated in the finals of the 2013 Tournament of Champions, losing to C.K. McClatchy High School from Sacramento, California on a 2-1 decision, and finally won the National Forensic League National Championship in policy debate, defeating Glenbrook South in the finals on a 10-5 decision. It was the first time two schools from the same district debated each other in the finals.


Glenbrook North is among the top performers in Illinois DECA. As of 2014, Glenbrook North DECA sent over 30 members to DECA's international Career Development Conference.[14] Glenbrook North has a total of over 150 DECA members, and possesses a huge presence in the school community.[15] Additionally, Glenbrook North has received numerous awards at ICDC, placing 1st in 2012, and 3rd in 2014.[16]

Bill Clinton Visit[edit]

On January 22, 1997, then President Bill Clinton visited Glenbrook North to speak to the school. Clinton's speech was held in the school's fieldhouse and was largely centered around mathematics and science. At the time, students were participating in a program called "First in the World." The program was to judge the level of knowledge in math and science against other schools around the world. Glenbrook North came in 1st in the Science category, and 3rd in the Mathematics category. Less than a month later, Bill Clinton referenced the school, his visit, their progress, and achievements in his 1997 State of the Union Speech on February 4, 1997.

Hazing incident[edit]

In May 2003, Glenbrook North High School gained notoriety after an off–campus, non–school sanctioned event involving students dressed in school colors turned into a major hazing incident that attracted media attention.

The event was a "Powder Puff" girls' football game between juniors and seniors. The "game" took place on Sunday, May 4, 2003, in Chipilly Woods, part of the Cook County Forest Preserve District. Although the annual Powder Puff game was held at the school football stadium in earlier decades, there was no playing of football at the 2003 event. The hazing began as soon as the junior girls arrived. About 20 junior class participants were sat in the middle of a clearing while they were covered in paint, urine, feces, and animal guts. Some were shot with paintball guns, others were kicked and beaten. After it was over, at least five of the participants had injuries requiring medical attention, including one receiving stitches to her head.[17]

Thirty-one students; twenty-eight females and three males; were suspended from school for 10 days. They were later expelled.[18] Some of the expelled students and their parents filed a lawsuit because they would then be unable to graduate from school.[19] The plaintiffs and the school district reached an agreement where the expelled students would have their diplomas mailed to them provided they dropped the lawsuits and did not make any book or movie deals about the incident. Twenty juniors who participated were suspended, though fifteen had their suspensions rescinded after signing an agreement with the school.[20] Local law enforcement authorities investigated the hazing incident and filed charges against 15 students for assault and battery.[21][22] Two mothers were charged with providing alcohol for the event. All were convicted and the sentences received were light, ranging from probation to community service.[23]

A community–wide task force was established by the Northbrook Police Department Community Services Division after the hazing incident.[24] Their final report stressed the needs for recognizing and preventing hazing incidents.

Glenbrook Academy of International Studies[edit]


The Glenbrook Academy of International Studies is a four-year program with students from Glenbrook North and Glenbrook South High Schools. 30 freshmen are selected each year through an application process. Founded in 1981 to give students a more unorthodox learning perspective, it covers English, Social Studies, and a foreign language. Each class learns a different foreign language from a rotation of four: Spanish, French, German, and Mandarin Chinese.


Glenbrook North is a member of the Central Suburban League. The school is also a member of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA), which sponsors most of the major sport and activity state tournaments in Illinois.

The school sponsors interscholastic teams for young men and women in basketball, cross country, golf, gymnastics, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis, track & field, volleyball, and water polo. Men may also compete in baseball, football, and wrestling. Women may compete in badminton, cheerleading, and softball. While not sponsored by the IHSA, the school also fields teams for men and women in lacrosse.[25]

The following teams won their respective IHSA sponsored state championship tournament:[26]

  • Baseball: State Champions (1965–66, 73–74)
  • Basketball (boys): 2004–05
  • Football: 1974–75
  • Soccer (boys): 1983–84
  • Swimming & Diving (girls): 1977–78
  • Tennis (boys): 1980–81, 98–99, 2005–06
  • Volleyball (boys): 1992–93

In 2005, the school became the first large-enrollment high school in Illinois to have won a state championship in each of football, basketball and baseball.[27]

Glenbrook North Hockey, a club team, won[28] back to back state titles in 1984 and 1985, the first Varsity hockey team in Illinois to do so, and then again in 2007 and 2008. In 2011, 2013 and 2014 the team returned to the title game but lost to the New Trier Trevians. In 2015, Glenbrook North Hockey returned to the title game vs Benet Academy, and won 3-2 in overtime. This is their 5th Illinois State Hockey Championship.[29]

Notable alumni[edit]

Notable faculty[edit]


  1. ^ "District 225 homepage; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  2. ^ "District 225 Administration Directory; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Glenbrook North Administrative directory; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  4. ^ "GBNHS staff directory; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Class of 2008 school report card; accessed May 8, 2009" (PDF). Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  6. ^ "GBNHS Athletic Dept; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  7. ^ "GBNHS mascot; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  8. ^ "School info for Glenbrook North HS;; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  9. ^ "Record Percentage of Failing Schools in Illinois". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 14, 2012. 
  10. ^ a b c "literary clubs for Glenbrook North HS;; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  11. ^ Pam Cytrynbaum, Andrew Buchanan, Tribune Staff Writers.. "CLINTON IN TOWN AND FOCUSING ON EDUCATION GLENBROOK NORTH IS SITE OF SPEECH :EVENING UPDATE, C Edition. " Chicago Tribune [Chicago, Ill.] 22 Jan. 1997,EVENING, 1:3. Chicago Tribune. ProQuest. Niles Public Library, Niles, IL. May 8. 2009
  12. ^ Cohen, Jodi S (June 20, 2004). "No debate: Glenbrook North rules". Chicago Tribune. 
  13. ^'00.pdf
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ "''Initiation turned hazing investigated'' May 7, 2003". May 7, 2003. Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  18. ^ "''Principal: School will seek expulsions for hazing'' May 14, 2003". May 14, 2003. Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  19. ^ "''Suspended Senior Files Suit Against GBNHS'' May 13, 2003". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  20. ^ .umi .com/pqdweb ?did=344004261 &sid=1 &Fmt=3 &clientId=32684 &RQT=309 &VName=PQD Black, Lisa & Flynn, Courtney; Former students link teachers to hazings ; Grease supplied, court papers say; June 5, 2003; p. 6; Chicago Tribune; accessed May 8, 2009
  21. ^ Font size Print E-mail Share By Rome Neal (May 16, 2003). "''15 Face Charges In Hazing Incident'' May 16, 2003". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  22. ^ Wilgoren, Jodi (May 17, 2003). "''Misdemeanor Charges Filed in Teenage Hazing Incident'' May 17, 2003". Glenbrook (Ill); Cook County (Ill): New York Times. Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  23. ^ .umi .com/pqdweb ?did=411025661 &sid=1 &Fmt=3 &clientId=32684 &RQT=309 &VName=PQD Northbrook teen guilty in hazing; September 25, 2003; p. 6; Chicago Tribune; accessed May 8, 2009
  24. ^ "Flynn, Courtney; ''District open to idea of hazing task force''; May 29, 2003; p. 1; ''Chicago Tribune''; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  25. ^ "GBNHS sports teams; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  26. ^ "IHSA season summaries for GBNHS; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  27. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n "Kaye, Dan; ''First things first for the Spartans''; November 14, 2007; ''Chicago Sun-Times''; accessed May 8, 2009". Retrieved January 22, 2011. [dead link]
  28. ^
  29. ^ "Hockey". Chicago Tribune. March 24, 2013. 
  30. ^ "‘30 Rock’ actor is Glenbrook North grad". Retrieved January 22, 2011. 
  31. ^ Philip Hersh (December 23, 2000). "They're back: Chinese skaters getting firmer hold on the ice". Chicago Tribune. p. Sports, 6. 
  32. ^ "The secret of 'NCIS'? Northbrook, for starters". Chicago Tribune. December 7, 2010. 
  33. ^ a b c d e f g h i Great Alumni of GBNHS; accessed May 8, 2009
  34. ^ "Ken Goldstein". 
  35. ^ Laconian 44. Glenbrook North High School. 1997. p. 237. 
  36. ^ Spencer, LeAnn (June 19, 1997). "Riding on brains, mettle – Glenbrook North student learns that a roller coaster is not built in a day.". Chicago Tribune. p. Metro Chicago 1. 
  37. ^ Prospects: Rankings: Top 100 Prospects: 2011 Top 100 Prospects: 41-60
  38. ^ Indians call up top prospect Jason Kipnis | HardballTalk
  39. ^ Laconian 27. Glenbrook North High School. 1980. p. 184. 
  40. ^ Brian James
  41. ^ Directory of athletic coaches for GBNHS; accessed May 9, 2009

External links[edit]