Columbia High School (Decatur, Georgia)

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Columbia High School
Columbia Eagles.jpg
Columbia High School
2106 Columbia Dr.
Decatur, Georgia 30032
United States
School type Magnet school and public high school
Status Open
School district DeKalb County Public Schools
Principal Dr. Derrica Boochee-Davis
Grades 9–12
Enrollment 1,300
Language English
Hours in school day 6 hours, 10 minutes
Color(s) Orange      and blue     
Sports Basketball, baseball, cheerleading, cross-country, football, golf, soccer, softball, swimming, volleyball, wrestling, and marching band
Nickname Eagles
Feeder schools Columbia Middle School

Columbia High School (CHS) is a four-year public high school located in Decatur, Georgia, United States. It opened in 1966. In 1992, the Mathematics, Science and Technology Magnet Programs were established at Columbia, which gave students in the Metro Atlanta area an opportunity to have a more focus-based education in these areas.

Columbia's mascot is the Eagles and its colors are orange and blue. Its motto is "Students are our business."

The school was given the Georgia School of Excellence award in 1996. Extracurricular activities include athletics, marching and concert band, color guard, Future Business Leaders of America, Beta Club, and JROTC.

Columbia High School neighbors Southwest Dekalb High School, Towers High School, and McNair High School.


Boys' basketball[edit]

Columbia High School is considered a national powerhouse in high school basketball. They have been ranked nationally by ESPN in numerous years.

The boys' basketball team has gone to the state championship every year since 2005. They are the first team in the history of Dekalb County to win more than four state basketball championships.

State Champions: 2005-2006 (AAAA), 2007-2008 (AAAA), 2009-2010 (AAA), 2010-2011 (AAA), 2011-2012 (AAA)

Region Champions: 2005-2006 (Region 5-AAAA), 2006-2007 (Region 6-AAAA), 2007–2008 (Region 6-AAAA), 2008-2009 (5-AAA), 2009-2010 (5-AAA), 2010-2011 (5-AAA), 2011-2012 (5-AAA)

In the 2009-2010 season, the girls' and boys' teams were AAA State champions in 2009-2010. They were the sixth team in the history of Georgia High School basketball to accomplish this feat. The girls' and boys' teams repeated this feat in the 2011-2012 season as they both won the Class AAA state titles.

The boys' basketball team has been coached by Dr. Phil McCrary since 1987. As of February 2011, he has posted a 502-183 record. He won his 500th career game at the Primetime Shootout in West Virginia on January 21, 2011 against Jamesville-Dewitt High School.[1] Coach McCrary has sent more than 100 student athletes to Division I basketball programs, including NBA guard and former UGA basketball star Travis Leslie. Coach McCrary has received numerous coaching accolades, including:

  • 2010 - Georgia Naismith Coach of the Year Award[2]
  • Georgia Sports Writers Association Class AAAA Coach of the Year Award - 1990, 2006, 2008, 2010
  • Atlanta Journal-Constitution Coach of The Year - 1990, 2006, 2008, 2010
  • Georgia Athletic Coaches Association Coach of The Year - 2006, 2010
  • 2010 - selected as an Assistant Coach in the Jordan Brand Classic, Charlotte, North Carolina

Girls' basketball[edit]

The girls' basketball team won their first state championship in 2010. The 2010 season also marked the first time for a DeKalb County school to win both a boys' and a girls' title in the same season, as Columbia swept the Class AAA titles.

The girls' basketball team won their second Class AAA state championship in 2012. For the second time, the girls' and boys' teams swept the Class AAA championships.

The girls' basketball team won their third championship in 2013, in Class AAAA.

Girls' track[edit]

The girls' track team has won three state championships, in 1983, 1995 and 1996. One of the highlights of the girls' track program is Olympic gold medalist Gwen Torrence. She was the state champion in the 100 and 200 meters from 1980 to 1983, while running for Columbia.

Boys' track[edit]

The boys' track team has won two state championships, in 1980 and 1983.


Columbia High School has won five state championships in wrestling, in 1972, 1973, 1976, 1977 (all under coach Michael J. Godlewski), and 1988 under Coach Maso R Moon. Columbia has won 26 individual state titles as of March 2011. The wrestling team has finished in the top 10 in the state 19 times.[3]


Alma Mater[edit]

Columbia, we hail to thee,
to hear our heart-felt song!
Now and ever true we'll be,
guide our minds from wrong!
Every step and every stride,
filled with faith and pride.
Robed in beauty, strength and love,
God give thee peace eternal,
Grow in grandeur, grow in grace,
Accept our love for thee! (words and music by Jack Bell)

Allman Brothers[edit]

On May 23, 1970, the Allman Brothers Band performed in the gymnasium of Columbia High School for the Junior-Senior Prom.

Stan Kenton[edit]

On March 12, 1973, Stan Kenton and the Stan Kenton Orchestra gave an afternoon workshop and an evening concert at DeKalb Community College South Campus (now called Perimeter College South Campus). The concert was sponsored by the Columbia High School Band Boosters as a fundraiser.

Braves baseball opener[edit]

On 4 April 1975, 200 members of the Columbia High School Band, Advanced Mixed Chorus, Drill Team, and Majorettes furnished the music for pre-game activities at the Atlanta Braves baseball opening game with the Houston Astros at Fulton Stadium.

Musical productions[edit]

The following musicals were produced and staged at Columbia:

  • Carousel (1970) - directed by Madison D. Short, Jr.
  • The Sound of Music (1973) - directed by Madison D. Short, Jr.
  • West Side Story (1975) - performances on May 19, 20, 22, 24, directed by Madison D. Short, Jr.

Destruction of music library[edit]

During renovation of the school during 2004-2005, thousands of copies of sheet music were destroyed, wiping out the school's extensive music library of choral and band scores.


  • Aquila (yearbook), vol. 1, 1968-
  • Columbia High School PTA Newsletter, vol. 1, no.1, 1968-
  • Courrier (school newspaper), 1966-1971
  • Eagle's Echo (school newspaper), 1974-
  • Columbia High School Literary Magazine, 1968-1971
  • Witches' Brew (literary magazine), 1972-1973
  • Eagle Talk, 1971-1972
  • Grundee Gazette, c1970-1974

Notable alumni[edit]


  • On Sunday, June 29, 1986, Ray of Hope Christian Church began worshiping in the cafeteria of Columbia High School.
  • Choral director Madison D. Short, Jr. was roommates with rock and roll keyboardist Rick Wakeman.
  • Country singer Glen Campbell chose the winners for Miss Aquila and her court on April 14, 1969.


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°43′37.26″N 84°14′19.86″W / 33.7270167°N 84.2388500°W / 33.7270167; -84.2388500