Jefferson High School (Portland, Oregon)

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Jefferson High School
JeffHighPortland.jpg
School of champions[citation needed]
Address
Jefferson High School is located in Portland, Oregon
Jefferson High School
Jefferson High School
5210 N Kerby Avenue
Portland, Oregon, Multnomah County, 97215
United States
Coordinates 45°33′37″N 122°40′20″W / 45.5604°N 122.6721°W / 45.5604; -122.6721Coordinates: 45°33′37″N 122°40′20″W / 45.5604°N 122.6721°W / 45.5604; -122.6721
Information
Type Public
Opened 1908
School district Portland Public Schools
Principal Margaret Calvert[1][2][3]
Grades 9-12
Number of students 435[4]
Color(s) Blue and gold   [2]
Athletics conference OSAA Portland Interscholastic League 5A-1[2]
Mascot Democrats[2]
The Jeff High Democrat.
Website

Jefferson High School is a public high school in Portland, Oregon, founded in 1908.

History[edit]

Photo from 1910-1920
Photo from circa 1920

Jefferson opened in September 1908, and received its name at some later date.[5] The school wasn't ready in 1908, but was opened early due to overcrowding. It was finished on February 6, 1910.[5] Hopkin Jenkins was principal at Jefferson from opening until June 1940.[5]

Due to the baby boom and passing of a $25 million building levy by the school district in 1947, a new high school was slated.

In September 1991, "at least six fires" were set at the school by an arsonist.[6]

On January 7, 2008, Mayor Potter relocated City Hall to Jefferson for a week. Potter held a City Council meeting and delivered the State of the City address there. The aim was stated to be to "give students, parents and educators a first hand lesson in how government really works - and to showcase the opportunities, successes and challenges facing every school in Portland's six public school districts."[7]

School profile[edit]

Jefferson High School graduation, demonstrating the ethnic diversity which is rare for Portland, which has been referred to as "the whitest major city" in the United States. [1].

In 2009-2010 the school was the only one in Oregon to have a majority of African American students.[4] Only 30% of students live within the school boundaries.[4] In 2009, 18% of students transferred into the school.[8]

In 2008, 67% of the school's seniors received their high school diploma. Of 132 students, 89 graduated, 23 dropped out, 11 received a modified diploma, and 9 are still in high school.[9][10]

In September 2011, all freshman students were required to participate in the Middle College for Advanced Studies. This program was explained as follows: Freshmen and sophomores will focus on their core subjects at Jefferson. They will learn such skills as study habits and organization to prepare them for college coursework and will move through classes in groups — or academies - with the same set of teachers. As students are ready, they will move to college prep classes at Jefferson and college courses at PCC Cascade Campus, mostly in their junior and senior years. PCC pathways will range from preparation for a four-year college to careers such as EMT, medical assistant, firefighter, and heating, ventilation and cooling technician. College coursework is offered at no cost to Jefferson students. Students who receive special education services may participate in the Middle College as recommended by their individualized education plan teams. Students who are learning English may participate in the Middle College by taking credit-bearing ESOL courses and other courses consistent with their English language level. Counselors and advisers at PCC and Jefferson will closely support students as they progress. Self Enhancement, Inc., a youth-development nonprofit, will provide such core support services as tutoring and mentoring to all Jefferson students. Students will earn a high school diploma from Jefferson as well as 12 to 45 college credits from PCC that are fully transferrable to other colleges and universities.

Dance program[edit]

In the mid-1970s, in an attempt to integrate the student body, Jefferson High School introduced the magnet arts program and the dance program to attract students from other Portland high school attendance areas. The dance program was founded by Mary Vinton Folberg, sister of Will Vinton (creator of Claymation). Folberg modelled the Jefferson Dance Department after the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts. While the magnet arts and dance program attracted some white students from other school attendance areas, some argue that this has not lead to integrating the student body, and that only a small percentage of black students in this traditionally black school are able to enroll in the dance and arts programs.

The Jefferson dance program teaches different levels of a broad range of dance styles, including ballet, tap, African, modern, hip hop and jazz. Twice each school year the students' achievements are publicly showcased in recitals in the school's auditorium; one in the winter and one in the spring. Considered a foundation of many types of dance, ballet is an essential part of many dance students' educations. However, the Jefferson dance program and school-based company, The Jefferson Dancers, lacked advanced ballet training for about a decade. In the 2009 winter recital, The Jefferson Dancers performed the school's first piece en pointe in about ten years.

The Jefferson Dancers[edit]

World-famous choreographer Donald McKayle (seated, center) posed with members of The Jefferson Dancers, in 1992, after a week-long rehearsal wherein he taught the company two of his signature dances: "Games" and "Rainbow 'Round My Shoulder."

In the late 1970s, Folberg founded the student dance company The Jefferson Dancers. Since its founding, The Jefferson Dancers has grown and changed in various ways, exposing its members to a diverse range of dance styles, including ballet, modern, African, tap, jazz and hip hop. The company's dance instructors are highly qualified and have led successful dance careers. Some instructors have even continued to perform during their involvement with The Jefferson Dancers. Promising company members are awarded scholarships at each Spring Recital, and company auditions are held for two days each spring.

The company performs twice annually at Jefferson High School's winter and spring dance recitals, as well as throughout Portland, Oregon, and the world. The company toured in Germany in April 2009, Italy in March 2011, and China in 2013.[11]

Athletics[edit]

Basketball program[edit]

The men's basketball team has been one of the most successful programs in Oregon. In 1999-2000, they went undefeated,[12] were nationally ranked, and won the 5A state championship three years in a row in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

State championships[edit]

  • Boys basketball: 1951, 1972, 2000, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014[13]
  • Girls basketball: 2008, 2010[14]
  • Football: 1957, 1958
  • Boys Swimming: 1951
  • Girls Swimming: 1952, 1953
  • Baseball: 1946, 1947, 1959
  • Girls Tennis: 1951, 1953, 1954
  • Boys Track & Field: 1944, 1945, 1960, 1963
  • Girls Track & Field: 1984

Notable alumni[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "School Facts: Jefferson". Portland Public Schools. August 17, 2011. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  2. ^ a b c d http://www.osaa.org/schools.aspx/JeffersonPDX/
  3. ^ Hammond, Betsy (2011-05-25). "New principal for Portland's Jefferson High is the school's assistant principal". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2012-02-11. 
  4. ^ a b c Melton, Kimberly (2010-01-21). "What will be the fate of my high school?". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2010-02-09. 
  5. ^ a b c Polich, Edward L. (1950). A history of Portland's secondary school system with emphasis on the superintendents and the curriculum (Thesis/dissertation). University of Portland. pp. 68,126. OCLC 232551057. 
  6. ^ "Previous Portland-area school fires". The Oregonian. 2009-11-10. Retrieved 2009-11-11. 
  7. ^ Mayor Potter moving office to Jefferson High School for week of January 14-18; will hold City Council meeting and deliver State of the City on campus (01/07/08)
  8. ^ Melton, Kimberly (2010-02-04). "How many transfer, and where do they go?". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  9. ^ "State releases high school graduation rates". The Oregonian. 2009-06-30. Retrieved 2009-07-01. 
  10. ^ "Oregon dropout rates for 2008". The Oregonian. 2009-06-30. Retrieved 2009-07-01. 
  11. ^ "Jefferson dance troupe benefits from school’s transformation". The Portland Tribune. April 20, 2011. Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  12. ^ Vondersmith, Jason (March 18, 2008). "Jeff boys take 5A, hold bragging rights". Portland Tribune. 
  13. ^ http://www.osaa.org/basketball/records/boyschamps.pdf
  14. ^ http://www.osaa.org/basketball/records/girlschamps.pdf
  15. ^ "Portland natives Terrence Jones, Kyle Wiltjer lead No. 2 Kentucky past Morehouse, 125-40". Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  16. ^ "Colorado Rapids Roster". Colorado Rapids. Retrieved 9 April 2014. 
  17. ^ Oregonian archives, Multnomah County Library Info desk

External links[edit]