Dickinson High School (Dickinson, North Dakota)

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Dickinson High School
The Midget
979 13th Avenue West
Dickinson, North Dakota 58601
United States
Type Public high school
Established 1909
Oversight Dickinson Public Schools
Principal Ron Dockter
Campus Director Guy Fridley
Faculty 56
Grades 9-12
Enrollment 752[1] (October 2012)
Color(s)          Orange and black
Mascot The Midgets
Yearbook Daily Prophet

Dickinson High School is a public high school located in Dickinson, North Dakota. It currently serves about 752 students and is a part of the Dickinson Public Schools system. The official school colors are orange and black and the athletic teams are known as the Midgets.

A Midgets fan page of '64

In 1994, Dickinson adopted the block scheduling system, in which students attend only 4 courses a day, each 1.5 hours long, enabling them to earn more class credits than in other schools (which mandate 7 courses per day). They have recently added the "opportunity period," which allows a 30-minute period for lunch. In this time the students can work on homework, tests, or whatever the teacher assigns. This takes place three days a week and freshmen are required to attend. If the other classes do not need the extra help, they get an extended lunch.

There has been controversy surrounding Dickinson's mascot, the Midget. In the mid-1990s the school became concerned that their 80-year-old mascot was not very politically correct, and communicated that they were considering a change.[2] NBC's The Today Show even featured a piece on the Little People of America[3] in which the organization stated that they were not offended by the name, influencing the school to keep its traditional mascot.

DHS educates an average of 890 students in grades nine through twelve each year, and employs 60 certified teachers and 35 classified staff members. DHS offers 328 different courses in a variety of subjects, as well as Advanced Placement courses and college dual-credit courses.


Photograph of A.L. Hagen Junior High where Dickinson High School once was

In 1909 the community built Central High School, a two-story structure of 12 classrooms. The first floor contained the library and assembly hall, and the basement served as the gym. Central High possessed the latest in technological marvels when electric lights were installed in 1910. The school stood on the southwest corner of the school block where P.S. Berg Elementary stands today.

By the mid-1930s Dickinson's schools suffered from overcrowding. The school board felt it was time to build a new high school, but, despite information presented to the public, the city voted against the $100,000 bond issue necessary for construction. However, the school board applied for assistance from the Public Works Administration to build the high school and adjoining athletic field. Additions were made to this new Central High School in 1950. Central High School became increasingly more crowded and as the Model High at Dickinson State College closed in 1963, the need for a new high school was evident. The State Department of Vocational Education agreed to help with construction.

Aerial photo of the new High School in Dickinson, ND

In March 1966, voters approved the $1,525,000 bond issue for construction. The new high school, Dickinson High School, was designated as one of the two area vocational high schools in North Dakota. Several outbuildings and a new auditorium were added over the years.

The 1981-1982 school year saw the largest student enrollment in the district's history, with 1,041 students in the high school. The former Central High became A.L. Hagen Junior High in 1968, when the new Dickinson High School was built on Empire Road north of town.

Activities and athletics[edit]


Notable alumni and staff[edit]

  • Jack Carlson (1950–2003), Dickinson High School track and field head coach, 1985-2003[4]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 46°53′23″N 102°48′23″W / 46.88972°N 102.80639°W / 46.88972; -102.80639