San Diego High School
|San Diego High School|
|Type||Public high school|
|Location||San Diego, California, United States of America|
|Colors||Blue & White|
|Yearbook||'The Old Grey Castle'|
San Diego High School is an urban public educational complex comprising six small schools located on the southern edge of Balboa Park, in San Diego, California. It is part of the San Diego Unified School District. It is the oldest high school in the San Diego Unified School District and one of the oldest public schools in all of California; the oldest still on its original site. Its flagship school is the School of International Studies, ranked the 44th best high school in the nation by US News with an IB exam pass rate of 98% and an API score of over 800. Other schools include the School of The Arts; School of Science & Technology; School of LEADS; School of Business; and School of Communications.
Russ High 1887-1907
The school was established in 1887, and was initially named Russ High after lumberman Joseph Russ, who offered to donate the lumber to build the school. The school served to educate a fast growing San Diego.
The Grey Castle 1907-1973
By 1902 the school had become overcrowded and a new school was built on the original site, opening on April 13, 1907. The new building, designed by F.S. Allen of Pasadena, resembled a castle and was subsequently nicknamed "The Grey Castle."
Modern San Diego High 1973-Present
Due to California legislation in the 1960s, which required all school districts to demolish or retrofit any school building built prior to 1933, the "Grey Castle" building was torn down; the first of four buildings constructed prior to 1933 was torn down along with the "Russ Auditorium" in 1973; Building 101, the "Original Grey Castle" was the last building to be torn down in 1975 and the current building was dedicated in 1976.
In 2004, San Diego High School was divided into 6 thematic schools as a result of funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, collectively called The San Diego High Educational Complex. These six smaller schools within the larger school focus curriculum on School of International Studies; School of The Arts; School of Science & Technology; School of LEADS; School of Business; and School of Communications. Each School provides a smaller learning environment for students with an emphasis on rigor, relevance, and relationships.
In May 2006, Newsweek magazine ranked 1,200 public high schools in the U.S. and named San Diego High's International Studies school #22, making it the highest ranking in San Diego County and the second highest in the state of California.
San Diego High's football stadium, Balboa Stadium, was built in 1914 for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition with a capacity of 19,000 at that time. U.S. Presidents Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Delano Roosevelt gave speeches there. From 1961 to 1966 it was the home of the San Diego Chargers after being expanded to 34,000 capacity. Over the years it has played host to music legends such as Jimi Hendrix, and The Beatles in 1965. The 1914 stadium was torn down in the 1970s and a new one dedicated in 1978 with a seating capacity of about 3,000. The stadium is used for various sports including football, soccer and track, as well as the San Diego High School graduation ceremonies.
San Diego High School's mascot is the Cavers - originally the Cavemen.
San Diego High participated in the first high school football game in San Diego County in 1898, defeating Escondido High School 6-0. Players and coaches from San Diego traveled in covered wagons over the course of two days to reach their destination.
High School Football National Championship: 1916, 1955
High School Baseball National Champions: 1921
- The 1922 San Diego High baseball team was barred from league play by the CIF after its 1921 National Championship Squad played an unsanctioned game against the East's best baseball team of that time Cleveland High. This game drew 11,000 fans which saw San Diego High defeat Cleveland 10-0. During the 1922 season the team played college and independent teams, losing to just Stanford and the Sherman Indians. Beating Cleveland again in front of 13,000 fans.
- It is said that when the wrecking ball came to demolish the "Grey Castle" in order to build a new earthquake-safe school, it took repeated attempts to bring the structure down. In the summer of 1973, contractors attempted to bring down the "Russ Auditorium" using explosives; portions of the building would not come down. It took an extra six months to finish the demolition of the "Russ Auditorium".
- Kate Sessions, considered the "Mother of Balboa Park," taught at San Diego High in 1884.
Notable alumni and faculty
- Hobbs Adams, college football all-American, coach (Class of 1920)
- Joseph Cameron Alston, 12-time NCAA badminton champion (Class of 1944)
- Stan Barnes, College Football Hall of Fame member, US federal judge (Class of 1918)
- Belle Benchley, zoologist, author
- Earle Brucker, Jr., former Major League Baseball player
- Eileen Rose Busby, author
- Charlie Cannon, singer, theater performer and co-founder of Starlight Opera
- Bob Cluck, Major League Pitching Coach, Founder of The San Diego School of Baseball, author of ten books on baseball
- Marc Davis (athlete), Olympic runner
- Earl Ben Gilliam United States federal judge
- Charde Houston, Women's National Basketball League player
- Deron Johnson, former Major League Baseball player
- Jacque Jones, Major League Baseball player
- Mebrahtom Keflezighi, Olympic silver medalist
- Jeanne Lenhart, senior Olympian, amateur volleyball player, senior pageant winner
- Art Linkletter, television host
- Dale Maple, World War II soldier convicted of helping two German prisoners of war escape
- Wayne McAllister, architect
- Bill Miller, Olympic gold medalist, former world record holder in the pole vault
- Harold Muller "Brick," Olympic silver medalist and College Football Hall of Fame member
- H.D. Murphy One of San Diego's all-time best high school football players, Baseball & Football standout at University of Oregon, drafted by the Cowboys in 1964
- Stan Murphy Brother of H.D. Murphy, 2005 California teacher of the year, top four finalist in 2005 National Teacher of the year
- Stephen Neal, National Football League player, 1998/1999 NCAA wrestling champion, 2000 wrestling world champion
- Graig Nettles, former Major League Baseball player
- Craig Noel, American theatrical producer
- Gregory Peck, actor (Class of 1934)
- Clarence Pinkston, Olympic gold medalist
- Clarence Nibs Price, college football head coach
- Sol Price, entrepreneur
- Art Powell, former National Football League player
- Charlie Powell, former National Football League Player, boxer
- Floyd Robinson, former Major League Baseball player
- Julia Robinson, mathematician
- Paul Runge, Major League Baseball umpire
- Seraphim (Eugene) Rose, priest, author, Blessed (Class of 1952)
- Russ Saunders, College Football all-American, Warner Brothers executive (Class of 1924)
- Thomas Schelling, Nobel Prize winning economist
- Amby Schindler, College Football all-American, Rose Bowl and College All-Star MVP
- Kate Sessions, horticulturalist, botanist
- Albert "Pesky" Sprott, Olympic runner, college football player
- Paul Smith, pianist (Class of 1940)
- Steffan Tubbs, journalist, radio host, reporter for ABC News
- Jeremy Tyler, first basketball player to skip his senior year in high school and go straight to the pros
- Cotton Warburton, film editor, actor and College Football Hall of Fame member
- Art Williams, former National Basketball Association player
- "NEWSWEEK COVER: America's Best High Schools, 2006". PR Newswire. April 30, 2006. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
- San Diego Chargers:History
- Swank, Bill (2005). Baseball In San Diego: From The Plaza To The Padres. Arcadia Publishing. p. 89.
- Official San Diego High School webpage
- The Russ- San Diego High student newspaper
- San Diego Union-Tribune article on San Diego High School's ranking in Newsweek
- San Diego Unified School District quickfacts
- San Diego Hall of Champions Inductees