Rancho Alamitos High School

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Rancho Alamitos High School
Rancho Alamitos High School
11351 Dale Street
Garden Grove, California
School type Public
Founded 1957 (1957)
Principal Mary Jane Hibbard
Grades 9-12
Language English
Color(s) Green and Gold         
Team name Vaqueros

Rancho Alamitos High School is located in Garden Grove, California. It is a member of the Garden Grove Unified School District. The high school first opened in the spring of 1957 with no senior class. The first graduating class was in 1958.


Rancho Alamitos High School opened its doors in 1957. Its name means ranch of the little cottonwoods and is an acknowledgement of the Hispanic heritage of this area. The forty acres of the Rancho Alamitos High School campus was part of the original Rancho Los Nietos (grandchildren), circa 1784. Later, the land was divided among many family members into smaller Ranchos. In the 1950s, the Garden Grove Union High School District purchased the land from the Evans family. Construction of Rancho Alamitos High School began in 1956 and was nearly complete by 1957. There were two homes on the property facing Dale Street that were used as classrooms until construction was completed in 1959.

Rancho Alamitos first opened for grades nine through eleven on the Garden Grove High School campus during the fall of 1956. In the spring of 1957, the Rancho Alamitos campus officially opened under the direction of the first principal, Mr. Don Kennedy. The first senior class graduated in the spring of 1958 under the principalship of Mr. Richard Bivin. In 1960, Mr. Sam Chicas was principal and was succeeded by Mr. Vic McClain (1961). Rancho’s next principal was Mr. William Zogg (1964), followed by Mr. Tracy Strong (1966), Mr. Ron Forsyth (1976), Mr. Jim DeLong (1982), Mr. Bob Mesa (1985), Mr. Tom Robins (1991), Mr. Gene Campbell (2000), Mr. Frank Mackay (2006), and Ms Mary Jane Hibbard in 2009.


The school colors are green and gold. Until the mid-1970s the school mascot had been "Poco" (pronounced pō'kō / poh-koh), a cartoon character of a short male dressed in a large poncho with a serape, a Mexican–Indian throw blanket or rug over one shoulder and a large sombrero on his head, covering the eyes.

one of several renditions of the historical Poco image

The school logo was changed to a cowboy boot spur because of racial controversy regarding the character of Poco.[citation needed] More recently, the school's crest or a big letter V with the word "Rancho" across it would be seen on most planners and/or merchandise.

one of many renditions of the Rancho Alamitos shield
one of the most common Rancho logos


  • U.S News & World Report "The Best Schools in United States": Silver Medal.[year missing][1]


The school's athletic teams are known as the Vaqueros (a Spanish type of cowboy figure), though Rancho students tend to shorten its name to "Vaqs".

The athletic teams are part of California Interscholastic Federation's Southern Section, participating in the six-team Garden Grove League, mostly against other schools in the Garden Grove Unified School District.

The Vaquero football team had moderate success in the early to mid 90's, led by a slew of talented running. The team made two straight Div. VII Finals appearance. Falling just short in 1992 by a score of 14-13, to Sunny Hills High School. Running Back Leon Vickers was the Div. VII player of the year for his performance. The following year they fell to Mira Costa 29-17, their last finals appearance. In 96 and 97 the Vaqs posted back to back undefeated regular seasons, only to lose to rival Pacifica in the Semi-finals ('96) and Northview in the Quarter Finals ('97). In 1996 Leo Kosi was the Div. VIII MVP while in 1997 David Vickers held the same honor.

Categories of Sports[edit]

  • Soccer
  • Football
  • Volleyball
  • Track and Field
  • Cross Country
  • Water Polo
  • Swim
  • Tennis
  • Baseball
  • Softball
  • Basketball


Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ http://www.usnews.com/listings/high-schools/california/rancho_alamitos_high[dead link]
  2. ^ "rancho alamitos high school". 
  3. ^ "The Class of '98 : Catcher Gerald Laird Has the Tools for Success - Los Angeles Times". Articles.latimes.com. 1997-09-23. Retrieved 2012-02-08. 
  4. ^ Pollock, Mike. "Singing, Dancing Lessons Pay Off for Young Actor." Ogden Standard-Examiner. January 3, 1970.
  5. ^ {{cite web|url=http://articles.latimes.com/2000/sep/01/news/ss-14631 |title=PREP FOOTBALL 2000 / GARDEN GROVE LEAGUE - Rancho Alamitos - Los Angeles Times |publisher=Articles.latimes.com |date=2000-09-01 |accessdate=2012-12-03}}
  6. ^ "Prep Notes - It's In The Numbers - Los Angeles Times". Articles.latimes.com. 1992-10-01. Retrieved 2012-12-03. 

External links[edit]