Seminole High School (Seminole County, Florida)

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Seminole High School
Sanford, Seminole Co., Florida
Type Public
Established 1902
School district Seminole County Public Schools
Principal Connie Collins
Grades 9–12
Number of students 3,360[1]
Color(s) Orange and black          
Athletics conference Seminole athletic conference
Mascot Seminoles[2]

Seminole High School is a public high school located in Sanford, Florida, operated by Seminole County Public Schools. In May 2013, Connie Collins, a previous Seminole High School administrator, became principal.

From 2006 to 2011, Seminole High School was one of the schools in Seminole County on Newsweek's list of the top 1,200 schools in the United States.[3] Seminole High is also known for being the only high school in Seminole County to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. Seminole High also offers the Academy for Health Careers, which offers students a curriculum based on a future career in health care. Students take a health class and health material is integrated into the curriculum of all other subjects. Seminole High also offers Advanced Placement courses in a range of subjects.

School rankings[edit]

In the 2007-2008, 2008–2009, 2009–2010, 2010-2011, and 2012-2013 school year, the Florida Department of Education gave Seminole an "A" ranking. This was an improvement from 2006-2007's "C."[4]

Newsweek rated Seminole #303 in their list of the top 1,200 schools in the country in 2006.[4] Newsweek rated Seminole #150 in their list of the top 1,200 high schools in the country in 2007, making it the highest ranked high school in Seminole County.[3]


Sanford High School was built in 1902. In 1911 the student population necessitated the building of a new Sanford High School on Sanford Avenue. In 1927 a much larger building opened on French Avenue, and the school was renamed Seminole High School. By 1961 a new sprawling campus was opened at the present location on Ridgewood Avenue, and the old building on French Avenue became Sanford Junior High School (later renamed Sanford Middle School). Seminole High School has grown not only in the size of the campus, but also in student population - from the 4 female graduates in the Senior Class of 1907 to 555 graduates in 2007. The original building on 7th Street was for a time used as the Student Museum, open to elementary field trips to represent the rich history of education in Seminole County.[5] In 2012 that building was reopened, in a partnernship between Seminole County and the University of Central Florida as the Public History Museum; this made it open to the general public, as well as laboratory for university students to gain hands-on experience displaying history to the public.[6]


In 2004,[5] the school began renovations costing over $10 million, including the construction of new classroom halls, a new media center, a new gym, and a new auditorium. The renovation was completed in 2010.[4]

The new media center was put into use in the first quarter of the 2006-07 school year. Tomahawk Hall opened at the beginning of the second quarter of the 2006-07 school year. The brand-new performance gym, to be used exclusively for school sports competitions and pep rallies, was opened at the beginning of the 2007-2008 school year, and the new performing arts center, later to be named in honor of former principal Karen W. Coleman, opened in March 2008.[5] Seminole High's Thespians were the first to use the center, producing The Pink Panther Strikes Again that month, starring Cory Hutson as Jacques Clouseau. Following this production was the Seminole High Band's Prism Showcase (5/8/08), and shortly after came the Seminole High Chorus's Spring Revue (5/22/08). All construction is scheduled for completion by the summer of 2008.

Construction on a new building, now called Renegade, in the center of the campus was begun in Spring 2008 and was finished Spring 2009.

Renovations on the cafeteria began in early 2009 and were finished at the beginning of the 2009-10 school year. and the construction on a new building, now called Warrior Hall in the east side of the campus. The current amount of renovations completed, and to be built, total about $55 million.


With the sudden death of beloved Coach Mickey Yasko, they students of Leadership Class 2004-2005 and the weightlifters whom he sponsored, a scholarship was created in his name for weightlifters in Seminole County High Schools for their college education.

International Baccalaureate[edit]

Seminole High offers both the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme and the last two years of the IB Middle Years Programme. Many Seminole High IB students begin the Middle Years Programme at one of four Seminole County middle schools which offer the program.[7]

Alumni of Seminole High's IB Diploma Programme are currently represented at universities throughout the United States, the United States Military Academy at West Point, the United States Coast Guard Academy, and United States Naval Academy.[8] Many Seminole High IB alumni choose to attend public universities in Florida under the Bright Futures Scholarship Program.[8]

Instrumental music: Pride of the Tribe, Band, Orchestra, Jazz Chiefs, Percussion[edit]

Seminole High School has an award winning instrumental program that consists of Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, Concert Band, the Jazz Chiefs, a separate Percussion class and Seminole Strings. The three concert bands come together with the national ranked Dazzler Dance Team to make the Pride of the Tribe marching band who performs during the boys Varsity football team.

Vocal music[edit]

The SHS Chorus Department offers a variety of groups of all types and levels. All groups meet during school days. Seminole's choirs have sung for the Candlelight Processional at Epcot as an honor choir for 20 years and also performs at the annual "Arts Alive In Seminole!" program. Along with many other performing groups at Seminole, a number of the chorus groups perform for the annual "Dancing for Diabetes" show, a benefit show in Sanford that helps contribute to diabetes research. The SHS Chorus is under the direction of Lesa Boettcher.

"Fantasy" (SSA) Show Choir is approximately 40 voices."Fantasy" competes at one competition. This is a Show Choir that is filled with many new members getting there feet wet before they move into another group.

"First Take" (SATB)Is the premier vocal ensemble in the program, the best singers in the whole program come together here to take a traditional choir set up and make it anything but average.. The group was named so by Disney music representatives; when recording a selection for a Disney event, the group recorded perfectly on the first take.

"Destiny" and "Pizazz" are Seminole's premier show choirs. Pizazz (SSAA) is an all-girls group that performs and competes all around Central Florida.

"Destiny" (SATB) is a co-ed group that has received countless awards and performed all over the state of Florida.

"Gospel Choir" is a very well known group in the Central Florida area. They do both traditional and modern gospel pieces and even write their own music sometimes.

The SHS Chorus assistant is Loretta DeMattos, she is in charge of student accounts, scheduling, and everything else behind the scenes.


The school 'Dazzler' dance team has around 100 members and holds many national titles including the 1997, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, and 2014 national high kick titles at the National Dance Team Championship held at Walt Disney World.[citation needed] In 1999, 2001, 2005, 2008, 2010, and 2013 they received the title of National Champions at the MA National Championship in Texas.[citation needed]

Additional extra curricular activities[edit]

Seminole High also has a step team and also hosts Troupe 3266 of the International Thespian Society.[5] Under the direction of Tiffany Ortiz. Students may also take part in the theatre department and participate in school plays.

The school newspaper, The Seminole, is an elective course in which students may involve themselves in journalism, publishing, layout/design, photography, and advertising.


Sports practiced at the school include baseball, basketball, cheerleading, dance, track and cross country running, football, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting, wrestling, and bowling.

The Seminole High School Varsity Girls Bowling Team has placed second place in the Seminole County District Tournament two years in a row, and competed in the 2009 and 2010 FHSAA Bowling Finals at Boardwalk Bowl, Orlando.

The Seminole High School Varsity football played in the 6A Florida State Finals on December 20, 2008 winning against Miami Northwestern High School.[9] Video of Hail to the Champs Parade sponsored by the City of Sanford. [2] The swimming team won the 2008 state championships the same year.[citation needed]

Air Force Junior ROTC[edit]

The School's Air Force JROTC unit FL-872 Color Guard has won numerous first place awards. The AFJROTC unit was named an "Distinguished Unit" for the 2005-2006 school year. Seminole High School is currently ranked as a five star school.[citation needed]

Academic teams, honor societies, and similar activities[edit]

Students also participate in academic competitions and honor societies, such as Mu Alpha Theta, Model United Nations, Academic Tournament, Odyssey of the Mind, French Honor Society, German Honor Society, and Spanish Honor Society. In April 2012, Seminole High School's Math Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, placed 2nd in the state of Florida at the MAO State Convention. Seminole High School also placed 4th at the Mu Alpha Theta National Convention in July 2012. In 2011, Seminole High School placed 4th Place Overall in the State of Florida Mu Alpha Theta Competition and 5th Place at the Mu Alpha Theta National Convention.[10] In the spring of 2008, Seminole High's Model United Nations team, representing South Africa was one of two in the state named an Outstanding Delegation, equivalent to first place, at FHSMUN (Florida High Schools Model United Nations). Seminole High's Academic Tournament Team, named Illuminati, consistently wins 1st in the Seminole County Academic Team Tournaments. Illuminati brings two teams (Seminole Orange and Seminole Black) to Seminole State College's annual Battle of the Brains and won both 1st and 2nd place in 2012 and 2011, beating out all other Seminole County Teams.

Seminole High School also hosts a chapter of National Honor Society, which notably assists in seasonal events hosted by the city of Sanford and in the American Cancer Society fundraising event Relay for Life.

Organizations on campus[edit]

The school has active clubs for Young Democrats and Young Republicans, volunteering organizations such as Key Club, Pet Rescue Club, Salvation for a Nation, a group that raises awareness of the Darfur Conflict, a Gay-Straight Alliance, and groups for enthusiasts of anime, American Sign Language, bicycling, ballroom dance, wildlife, business, economics, Ultimate Frisbee, and Harry Potter among others.[11]

Notable alumni[edit]

Alma Mater[edit]

Video of the Alma Mater [4]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 28°46′52″N 81°17′01″W / 28.781179°N 81.28357°W / 28.781179; -81.28357