Los Alamos High School
|Los Alamos High School|
|1300 Diamond Drive
Los Alamos, New Mexico, 87544
|Type||Public, Grades 9–12|
|School district||Los Alamos Public Schools|
|Color(s)||Forest Green & Gold|
|Rival||Espanola Valley High School|
Los Alamos High School (LAHS) is the public high school in Los Alamos, New Mexico, USA. The school opened in 1946, and was originally supported by the Atomic Energy Commission. It has been academically recognized by Newsweek, U.S. News & World Report, and the New Mexico Public Education Department. The school has been visited by two U.S. Presidents: John F. Kennedy and Bill Clinton. LAHS currently competes in the New Mexico Activities Association's District 2, AAAA division for athletics, and has won 98 state championships in the school's history.
Los Alamos High School was the second high school built in Los Alamos. Prior to the Second World War, the Los Alamos Ranch School functioned as a boarding school for wealthy easterners that combined elements of a college preparatory school with a rugged frontier life. In 1942 Los Alamos was chosen to be the site of the Manhattan Project. The US Government acquired the property of the Ranch School through eminent domain, and the school was shut down in 1943.
During wartime, structures in Los Alamos were temporary because people were expecting to leave after the wartime project was completed. In August 1945, following the Allied victory in Japan, it was decided the Los Alamos Laboratory's nuclear research would continue in order to counter a rising Soviet threat. In 1946 Los Alamos begin erecting permanent structures, including Los Alamos High School. Life during the war and post-war transition was difficult for the first students of LAHS. "'[We were] normal teenagers trying to have a normal life in very adverse conditions," said Dan Nelis, one of the school's original students.
In 1946, much of the budget for construction and operation of the high school was provided directly by the Atomic Energy Commission instead of state or local taxes. This arrangement persisted under the Department of Energy and Washington has traditionally paid for a third of the school system's budget. Support from the federal government has been declining and was only 22% in the 2008–2009 academic year.
During the 1960s, LAHS began to attract attention for its consistent academic performance, low drop-out rate, and innovative teaching methods. President John F. Kennedy noted LAHS and other local schools during his visit to Los Alamos in 1962: "I've admired from some years ago, from reading an article about the kind of schools that you run here and the kind of boys and girls that you're bringing up." In 1964, after the assassination of President Kennedy, the community of Los Alamos erected a permanent memorial in his honor at the high school football field.
President Bill Clinton spoke at the school in 1993. In Clinton's speech, he marked the community's technological contributions to national security, and envisioned a new Post-Cold War role for the town in promoting technological advancement and prosperity.  In October 1995 a delegation of nuclear scientists from Sarov (Los Alamos's Russian sister city) visited Los Alamos to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Allied Victory in WWII and the end of the Cold War. During their visit members of the delegation both attended and taught classes at Los Alamos High School and the University of New Mexico, Los Alamos. Clinton made an unscheduled appearance at LAHS in 1998 following a speech he gave at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. After passing students who had gathered to cheer his motorcade on his way to the speech, Clinton returned to greet the students and play saxophone.
In 2000, two students were slain before daylight on Good Friday while making a traditional religious pilgrimage to El Santuario de Chimayó. On May 10 many students lost their homes in the Cerro Grande Fire. The blaze also devastated the scenic forests and hillsides surrounding the school.
The school was used as a filming location for the 2010 film Let Me In, the American remake of the Swedish film Let the Right One In. Students from LAHS and the surrounding community participated as extras in the cast.
Los Alamos High School's academic achievements have been recognized by a number of national publications. LAHS was ranked #780 out of 2,000 in Newsweek magazine's 2013 America's Best High School list. Los Alamos High School received "Silver Medal" ranking in 2013 as one of America’s Best High Schools in an announcement by US News & World Report on April 24, 2013. From a review of 21,035 U.S. public high schools, Los Alamos ranked 556th in the nation. Los Alamos ranking was up significantly from the 2012 "Silver Medal" ranking of 638th. LAHS was awarded a Silver Medal in US News and World Report's Best High School Search 2008. In 2005 LAHS was named one of the "1,000 Best High Schools in America" (#649) by Newsweek Magazine. In 1998, LAHS was identified as a top performing public high-school in Class Struggle, a book by Washington Post education reporter Jay Mathews examining the public education system in America. The strength of LAHS's academic record has been associated  with the academic nature of Los Alamos County, which has the highest concentration of PhDs per capita in the United States. LAHS is not a magnet school and does not have an admissions exam; Any student living in Los Alamos is free to attend. Every year students from LAHS students are recognized for the achievements by the National Merit Scholarship Program, the National Hispanic Recognition Program, and the College Board's AP Scholar awards.
LAHS does not rank students, arguing that a focus on rank by potential universities can cause many excellent students to be overlooked. The GPAs of top students at LAHS are separated from each other by thousandths of a point.
63% of LAHS faculty have earned an advanced degree.
LAHS is accredited by the North Central Association of the New Mexico State Department of Education. The Department of Education frequently awards LAHS with an "Exemplary" rating for its academics. LAHS has consistently exceeded the Adequate Yearly Progress Math and Reading proficiency requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act for its student body at large. However, LAHS has sometimes failed to meet the requirements of AYP due to inadequate test scores among students with disabilities or insufficient participation of Caucasian students.
AYP Testing Results School Year Proficiency Math (Goal) Proficiency Reading (Goal) School Rating Designation Reason if AYP not met 2010–11 79.01% (53%) 84.02 (64%) Not Met SI-2 Insufficient Math Proficiency among Students with Disabilities (24.14%) 2009–10 66.30% (46%) 77.50% (60%) Not Met SI-1 Insufficient Participation rate of Caucasian Students for AYP Math Test (93%)
Insufficient Math Proficiency among Students with Disabilities(22.2%)
2008–09 69.50% (40%) 73.50% (56%) Not Met SI-1 Insufficient Math and Reading Proficiency among Students with Disabilities (17.1% and 20.0% respectively) 2007–08 Meets AYP None 2006–07 75.31% (22%) 79.01 (41%) Meets AYP None 2005–06 Meets AYP 2004–05 89.00% (35%) 92.00% (44%) Not Met Insufficient Participation rate of Caucasian Students for AYP Reading Test (94%)
The Los Alamos High School has a standards-based curriculum and allows students to develop an individualized four-year plan. Advanced Placement (AP) courses are offered in German, Spanish, French, physics, biology, chemistry, calculus, statistics, English, American history, European history, psychology, and computers. Students also participate in NJROTC, educational work study, a building trades program, an automotive program, marketing and office technology courses, and concurrent enrollment at the University of New Mexico's Los Alamos Branch Campus which is located adjacent to the high school. Students who desire a different approach to education can apply to the School of Choice, a project oriented, cooperative learning, interdisciplinary program. Comprehensive special education programs are available at all levels including work study and vocational training. Work-related courses for credit include student assistant and student intern (stipend), which involve work on campus; MAPS (Mentorship, Apprenticeship, Partnership), which places students in the community (credit only); and Co-op Work Experience, which employs students throughout the community.
Los Alamos High School is a suburban high-school serving the entire county of Los Alamos, including White Rock. The median household income in Los Alamos County is $88,870 and few economically disadvantaged students attend LAHS. Elsewhere in New Mexico, LAHS is sometimes characterized as a school for the "rich". Most of the students at LAHS originate from Los Alamos Middle School, the only middle school in Los Alamos County.
- White, not Hispanic: 77%
- White, Hispanic: 17%
- Asian/Pacific Islander: 4%
- Indian/Alaskan Native: less than 1%
- Black, not Hispanic: less than 1%
- Black, Hispanic: 0%
Los Alamos High School competes in the New Mexico Activities Association District 2-AAAA. Since its transition from a AAA to a AAAA school in 2000–2001, the students of LAHS have won over 30 state titles in competitive high school sports. LAHS was honored with the AAAA Girls all-sports trophy in 2000–01, 2001–02, and 2003–04. In 2003–04 LAHS also received The "New Mexico Athletic Director of the Year" award.
Athletic Classification / District Alignment LAHS Athletic Districts Year: 2-A 1954–1967 1-AA 1968–1969 1-AAAA 1970–1992 2-AAA 1993–2000 2-AAAA 2001–present
In 2007, the LAHS Boys Cross Country team (competing as the Los Alamos XC Club) placed second at the 2007 Nike Cross Nationals. The LAHS Boys Cross Country team also participated in the Nike Cross Nationals in the 2006 season. In 2002 the LAHS Girls Cross Country, won the AAAA State Championship with a perfect score of 15 (i.e. their runners finished in places 1–5). The LAHS Girls Cross Country Team participated in the inaugural Nike Cross Nationals championship in the 2004 season.
LAHS has won over 90 state championships in athletics, the third-most number of state titles won by any high school in New Mexico.
Table of State Championships Season Sport Number of Championships Year Fall Football 1 1966 Boys' Cross Country 6 2003, 2007, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 Girls' Cross Country 19 1981, 1982, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 Boys' Soccer 2 1986, 2010 Girls' Soccer 6 1981, 1983, 1985, 1987, 1998, 2003 Volleyball 3 1987, 1995, 1996 Winter Boys' Basketball 2 1964, 2000 Girls' Basketball 0 Boys' Swimming 18 1956, 1971, 1974, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1987, 1988, 1990, 1991, 2004, 2005 Girls' Swimming 15 1970, 1972, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1984, 1985, 1988, 1992, 1993, 2004 Wrestling 0 Spring Baseball 2 1966, 1978 Cheerleading 0 Boys' Golf 5 1969, 1996, 2004, 2005, 2006 Girls' Golf 2 1984, 2007 Softball 0 Boys' Track 3 1965, 1995, 2008 Girls' Track 6 1995, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 Boys' Tennis 0 Girls' Tennis 8 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2013 Total 98
(Ranked 3rd in state)
|Wikisource has original text related to this article:|
LAHS directs several musical groups, many of which are offered for academic credit. These groups include a Marching Band, Jazz Band, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, Four Choirs (2 Women's, 2 Co-ed), and a Symphonic Orchestra. The LAHS Topper Marching Band won first place in their category at the tournament of the bands in 2006 and 2008, swept Pageant of Bands in 2008, won first place in their category at Zia Marching Band Festival in 2009. The Concert Band has taken home state titles most recently 2008, 2009, and 2011. All four LAHS choirs received superior ratings at the District Large Group Festival in 2009
Los Alamos High School has an active Science Bowl Club. The club won the New Mexico Regional competition in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014. Each of these years, the team progressed to the national competition in Washington D.C. In 2012, they became the first team from New Mexico to make it out of the national round robin round, finishing in a tie for 9th.
Other clubs and organizations
- LAHS literary magazine, Pegasus 2004, was "Recommended for Highest Award" in the 2004 NCTE Program to Recognize Excellence in Student Literary Magazines.
- In 2012 LAHS's NJROTC Unit was designated a "Distinguished Unit With Honors" for the ninth year in a row. This designation included academic honors, which are reserved for only a handful of units.
- The Hilltalkers, the competitive speech and debate team coached for many years by Paul Black, won numerous State Championships in Cross-Examination Debate, Extemporaneous Speaking and Original Oratory.
The mascot of Los Alamos High School is the Hilltopper. Sometimes LAHS students are referred to with the abbreviation Toppers or 'Toppers.
In the 1960s the Hilltopper was chosen as the mascot in a vote by the student body. (Previously, the school teams were iconified by a top-hat and gloves). In 1980 a mural of the Hilltopper was painted in Griffith Gymnasium. In this mural the Hilltopper was prominently depicted as a rugged Mountain Man with a walking stick atop the scenic Jemez Mountains that overlook LAHS. In 2004, the mural was destroyed during renovations to the Gymnasium's HVAC system when a series of fans were installed on the gym's interior south wall.
In 2010, construction began on the high school to replace aging buildings at the center of the campus. A-D wings were torn down to make room for a new three-story building. The new main building was completed in late 2011 with classes beginning in January 2012. This is the most recent in a series of capital renovations at the high school including the addition of a new science wing and the newly[clarification needed] remodeled R-Wing (formerly the cafeteria). In 2010 Los Alamos Public Schools were commended by Energy Education for their efforts in promoting energy efficiency. LA Schools achieved over a million dollars in energy cost savings during a 56 month period.
- Anthony Sandoval, winner of the 1980 U.S. Olympic Marathon trials, Olympic hopeful for the boycotted Moscow Olympics.
- Lynn Bjorklund National High School record 3000 metres
- Carol Cady, two time competitor in the Olympic games: Shotput in 1984, Discus in 1988. Held US Women's Discus record for 21 years.
- Drew Goddard (class of 1993), screenwriter and a co-executive producer of Lost.
- Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović (class of 1986), foreign minister of Croatia
- Kim Paffenroth, author, winner of the Bram Stoker Award for horror writing.
- Steven Preeg (class of 1989), 81st Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
- "2004–2005 District Report Card" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. February 7, 2005. Retrieved February 29, 2008.
- Los Alamos High School in LOS ALAMOS, NM | Best High Schools | US News
- "LAHS Maxpreps". Retrieved 10 December 2013.
- Klein, Julia M. (July 24, 2005). "The Manhattan Project's 'secret town'". The Boston Globe. Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- Brooke, James (November 29, 1995). "City Seeks Renewal In Absence Of Bomb". New York Times. Retrieved March 25, 2008.
- "Los Alamos Public School". National Center for Education Statistics. 2009. Retrieved February 9, 2011.
- Huber, Robert E. (December 30, 1967). "Los Alamos Schools Looked to As Guide". Washington Post. Retrieved December 6, 2008.
- "Los Alamos Designs Schooling 'Adventure'". Los Angeles Times. May 9, 1968.
- John F. Kennedy (December 7, 1962). 537 – Remarks at the High School Football Stadium, Los Alamos, New Mexico. (Speech). Sullivan Field in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
- John F. Kennedy Memorial (Plaque on Memorial Structure). Sullivan Field, Los Alamos High School. December 4, 1964.
In Memory of John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States of America and the first President to visit Los Alamos, New Mexico on December 7, 1962. Dedicated by the citizens of this community December 6, 1964
- "President: Lab Can Affect The Future As It Has The Past" (PDF). LANL Newsbulletin. May 21, 1993. Retrieved December 20, 2007.
- Berke, Richard L. (May 18, 1993). "Clinton Stumps For His Program In '92-Like Blitz". New York Times. Retrieved March 25, 2008.
- William J. Clinton (May 17, 1993). Remarks to the Community in Los Alamos, New Mexico (Speech). Sullivan Field in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
- "Visitors from Russia Enjoy Visit to Los Alamos". Santa Fe New Mexican. November 13, 1995.
- "The Lab Forever Changed the 20th century". LANL Newsbulletin. February 4, 1998. Retrieved December 20, 2007.
- "President plays quick gig at Los Alamos High School". Associated Press. February 5, 1998. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
- "Teens shot making Good Friday pilgrimage to northern New Mexico church". Associated Press. April 22, 2000.
- "Hollywood comes to Los Alamos High School". Los Alamos Monitor News. December 20, 2009. Retrieved December 20, 2009.
- "2005 New Mexico Teacher of the Year". Council of Chief State School Officers. April 20, 2005. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved December 20, 2007.
- "Best High School Search". US News and World Report. December 20, 2007. Retrieved December 20, 2007.The teaching staff at Los Alamos High School have been recognized as outstanding in science and mathematics teaching in 1985 when both Wilbur Bergquist (chemistry) and Mary Finch (mathematics) received the Presidential Award for outstanding Science and Mathematic teaching sponsored by the National Science Foundation and National Science Teachers Association. Cathy Strong was recognized for Mathematics in the same award in 1987
- "1,000 Best High Schools in America". Newsweek. 2005. Archived from the original on September 18, 2005. Retrieved January 1, 2006.
- Mathews, Jay (March 1999). Class Struggle: What's Wrong (and Right) with America's Best Public High Schools. Three Rivers Press. ISBN 0-8129-3140-8.
- Brooke, James (November 29, 1995). "City Seeks Renewal In Absence Of Bomb". New York Times. Retrieved March 10, 2011.
Indeed, Los Alamos County has the greatest concentration of PhD's in the country, local officials say. And last year Los Alamos students scored higher on Scholastic Assessment Tests than students in the school district of Princeton, N.J., a university town that is the headquarters for the company that develops the tests.
- "At School In The Secret City". Education Week. April 10, 1996. Retrieved February 18, 2011.
- "Santa Fe's High-Tech Chaparral". Business Week. January 9, 2001. Retrieved April 11, 2008.
- "School Detail for Los Alamos High". National Center For Education Statistics, US Department of Education. January 9, 2001. Retrieved February 8, 2011.
- "No Ranking Policy". LAHS. Retrieved 10 December 2013.
- "2003 Annual Report" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. January 1, 2004. Retrieved February 28, 2008.
- "School Accountability Report" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. August 1, 2010. Retrieved February 14, 2011.
- "2009–10 School Accountability Report" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. October 16, 2009. Retrieved February 16, 2011.
- "2008–09 School Accountability Report" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. July 30, 2008. Retrieved February 16, 2011.
- "2007–2008 AYP School Accountability Report" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. October 7, 2007. Retrieved December 21, 2007.
- "2006–07 School Accountability Report" (PDF). New Mexico Public Education Department. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
- "AP Courses Offered at LAHS". LAHS. Retrieved 10 December 2013.
- "Club - NJROTC Home". LAHS. Retrieved 10 December 2013.
- "In the "Hungriest" State, The USA’s Richest County Is Fed by Nuclear Weapons Programs" (PDF). New Mexico Nuclear Watch. November 24, 2006. Retrieved February 5, 2008.
- "Los Alamos High School". GreatSchools.Net. 2006. Retrieved December 20, 2007.
- "NMAA Member Schools". NMAA. Retrieved 10 December 2013.
- James Barron (August 1, 2004). "Los Alamos Receives Mores Recognition". Santa Fe New Mexican. Retrieved March 10, 2011.
- "Boys basketball: LA to take on its arch-rival tonight in big 2AAAA game". Los Alamos Monitor (LA Monitor). January 25, 2011. Retrieved February 21, 2011.
- "Los Alamos Boys – Nike Team Nationals 2007". Retrieved December 7, 2008.
- "2006 Boy's Nike Cross National Results". Retrieved December 17, 2010.
- "State Cross Country Meet (Girls) 2002". Sports-Net.Org. November 11, 2002. Retrieved December 20, 2007.
- "2004 Girl's Nike Team National Results". Retrieved February 17, 2011.
- "New Mexico State Football Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Boys State Cross Country Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Girls State Cross Country Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Boys State Soccer Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Girls State Soccer Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico State Volleyball Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Boys State Basketball Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Girls State Basketball Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Boys State Swimming & Diving Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico Girls State Swimming & Diving Champions". Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Wrestling Class A-AAA All Time Team State Champions". NMAA.
- "New Mexico State Baseball Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Golf Boys State Team Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Golf Girls State Team Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "New Mexico State Softball Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Track Boys State Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Track Girls State Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Tennis Boys State Team Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "Tennis Girls Team State Champions". NMAA. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- "LAHS Band Accomplishments 2009–2010". Los Alamos Public Schools. June 10, 2010. Retrieved February 8, 2011.[dead link]
- "LAHS band wins big at tournament". Los Alamos Monitor. November 5, 2010. Retrieved December 17, 2010.
- "LAHS Band Takes Home 3 Trophies at Zia Competition". Los Alamos Public Schools. October 28, 2010. Retrieved February 8, 2011.[dead link]
- "Support LAHS Choirs". Los Alamos Monitor. January 20, 2010. Retrieved December 17, 2010.
- "Los Alamos High School students headed for DOE National Science Bowl". share.sandia.gov. Retrieved February 25, 2013.
- "NJROTC Designated Area 9 Distinguished Unit". Los Alamos Public Schools: Awards & Achievements. Los Alamos Public Schools. May 5, 2008. Retrieved February 1, 2009.[dead link]
- Debbie Baber (1964–2004). Topperman (Fresco). Interior South Wall, Griffith Gymnasium, Los Alamos High School.
- "LAHS Construction". LAHS Construction Home. Los Alamos Public Schools. Retrieved December 17, 2010.[dead link]
- "LAHS R-Wing/NJROTC Ribbon Cutting Ceremony". Los Alamos Public Schools. October 28, 2010. Retrieved December 17, 2010.[dead link]
- "LAPS Receives Energy Excellence Award". Los Alamos Public Schools. May 7, 2010. Retrieved December 17, 2010.[dead link]
- Bloom, Marc (May 23, 2005). "At 51, a Marathoner Has Shed the Weight of Disappointment". New York Times. Retrieved March 25, 2008.
- "Girls' 3,000m, Boys' DMR Highlight HS Races at Penn". Retrieved October 4, 2011.
- "All-Time High School 3000 List". Retrieved October 7, 2011.
- "Carol Cady Biography & Statistics". Retrieved December 7, 2008.
- "How to Throw the Discus featuring Carol Cady". Retrieved December 7, 2008.
- "Biography for Drew Goddard". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
- "Diplomatic Missions and Consular Offices of Croatia". Retrieved February 17, 2011.
- "About Kim Paffenroth". Retrieved February 17, 2011.
- Russel, Inez (February 28, 2009). "El Mitote". Santa Fe New Mexican. Retrieved February 17, 2011.[dead link]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Los Alamos High School.|