Central High School (Memphis, Tennessee)
|Central High School|
Memphis Central High modern entry
306 South Bellevue Boulevard
|Motto||Enhancing The Tradition of Excellence|
|School district||Shelby County Schools|
|Color(s)||Green and gold|
|Fight song||Warrior Song/War Drum|
|Nickname||The High School|
|Rival||White Station High School|
Central High School
Front of Central High
|Location||306 S. Bellevue Blvd., Memphis, Tennessee|
|Area||6 acres (2.4 ha)|
|Architectural style||Tudor Revival, Jacobethan Revival|
|MPS||Public Schools of Memphis 1902-1915 TR|
|NRHP reference #||82004041|
|Added to NRHP||September 17, 1982|
Central High School is a public high school (grades 9-12) in Memphis, Tennessee. Since it was founded in the early 1900s and is considered the first high school in Memphis; Central is often called "THE" High School. It is a part of the Shelby County Schools Optional School system where it is recognized as a school specializing in college preparatory programs. The principal is Gregory McCullough. Central's mascot is the Warrior and the school colors are green and gold. For recognition as the successor to Memphis High School, the first high school in Memphis, Central High's football team, rather than having artwork denoting the "Warrior" mascot, simply has a capital "H", for THE High School
Central High was built in 1911, when the current building was erected on Raleigh Avenue, now called Bellevue Blvd. It is in the Jacobean Revival architecture style, with corner pavilions on the west facade, and rusticated surrounds on the upper story windows. Though there have been additions, the school retains is architectural integrity. Central High's building was added to the National Register of Historic Places on September 17, 1982.
Central High School offers a traditional program of academics as well as an Optional College Preparatory Program. Honors and Advanced Placement courses are offered.
In 2014, 405 students received diplomas. ACT composite scores for the 2014-2015 school year were 18.1 vs 19.8 for the state and 21.1 national.
Extra-Curricular/Clubs and Organizations
Central High School is known for its many clubs in foreign language, volunteer service, and honor societies. Central's extracurricular activities include:
Central's concert choir under the direction of Mr. Gaylon Robinson has won many awards in the state and nation. Central's band adopted their own mascot called "Sam." (Spirit, Attitude, Musicianship). Central's current band director is Mr. Ollie Lidell and formally was Mr. Roderick White. Central also has many successful athletic teams. The most notable are the softball, cross-country, basketball and track teams. The Lady Warrior Basketball team won the City and Regional Championships and were semifinalists at the state level in 2010. The Student Council is also very notable in the city, having participated in national and international student council conventions.
Noteworthy Alumnae and Alumni
- Avron Fogelman - (Prominent Memphis Businessman)
- Alex Chilton - (musician of the Box Tops – “The Letter” - would have been CHS '69, but dropped out when The Letter became a hit)
- Bette Greene - (CHS ’52; author “Summer of My German Soldier”)
- Kemmons Wilson - (Creator of the Holiday Inn)
- Charles W. Burson - (CHS '62; legal counsel and chief of staff to Vice-President Al Gore)
- George Barnes alias Machine Gun Kelly
- Terry Manning - music producer, photographer
- William Sanderson - (CHS ’62; 'Larry' on the Newhart show)
- John Farris - (CHS ’55; author “Harrison High”, a fictional account of Central High)
- William G. Leftwich, Jr. - (Marine killed in Vietnam)
- William F. Barnes - (football coach at UCLA)
- Peter Taylor - (short-story writer and novelist)
- Lester Hudson - professional basketball player
- William Poduska (CHS '55) - electrical engineer, businessman, and professor
- Edward L. Stanton III - United States Attorney & federal judicial nominee
- Damon West - also known as "DJ D.We$t" (CHS '92; musician & Disc Jockey, hip hop and r&b manager, promoter and producer and also owner of My Scented Flames)
- Natalie Jackson (CHS '78) - alias Kudisan Kai, former backup singer for Elton John
- Jon Wells (CHS '76) - alias "Thunder Paws", former drummer for Black Oak Arkansas (recorded on Ready As Hell)
Memphis Central High School Websites
- http://www.mcsk12.net/schools/central.hs/centralhomepage.htm[permanent dead link]
Memphis Central High School Class Websites
- http://www.centralwarriors.com 1963 Central High School Class
- http://www.memphiscentral1969.com 1969 Central High School Class
- http://larryholdermusic.org/chs/classof77 Classes of 1976 thru 1979
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Central High School (Memphis, Tennessee).|
- "Central High". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved February 7, 2019.
- National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- Lloyd Ostby (May 1982). "National Register of Historic Places Registration Form: Central High School". National Park Service. Retrieved February 9, 2016. Accompanying three photos from 1982.
- "Central High School Profile" (PDF). Central High School Memphis. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 February 2016. Retrieved 10 February 2016.