Germantown High School (Philadelphia)

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Germantown High School as seen from Germantown Avenue

Germantown High School was a secondary school located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Germantown High School graduated its final class on June 19, 2013 and closed its doors that week.[1]

GHS, located in Germantown, was a part of the School District of Philadelphia. The school was built in 1914 which made it one of the oldest in the country. Its students were mostly African-American, despite the previous German population of the region. Students came from the Logan, Germantown, Mt. Airy, Chestnut Hill, and Nicetown-Tioga sections of the city.[2]

The team name was the Bears.1993-94 and 95 Men’s Varsity basketball was ranked top in the city of Philadelphia.


Germantown High became a grade 11-12 school after Martin Luther King High School, housing grades 9-10, opened on February 8, 1972. The school district used this arrangement since it intended to keep students in Northwest Philadelphia economically integrated. Some neighborhoods in proximity to King, such as East Mount Airy and West Oak Lane, wanted King to become a 9-12 school because Germantown High was located in proximity to poorer areas. Eventually Germantown and King became separate 9-12 schools.[3] The campuses are about 1 mile (1.6 km) apart.[4]

Germantown High's peak student population was over 3,000. The enrollment declined due to the availability of magnet schools and charter schools. Prior to the school's 2013 closure, an entire wing had been blocked off and there were 676 students. In 2013 the students from Germantown were transferred to King.[5]


In 2013 the school had 676 students, mostly low income and African-American. Students in foster care and homeless students made up at least 10% of that student body.[5]

Academic performance[edit]

In 2013 the school's graduation rate was below 50%, 18% of students had proficiency in reading, and 15% had proficiency in mathematics.[5]


American football players had to ride a bus to sports practice because Germantown High did not have an on-campus athletic field. King and Germantown were previously athletic rivals, but after 2013 American football team players of Germantown High joined King's team.[5]

Feeder patterns[edit]

Feeder middle schools into Germantown included Roosevelt Middle School.[6] K-8 feeder schools into Germantown included Charles W. Henry School, Henry H. Houston School, John S. Jenks School, and Anna L. Lingelbach School.[6] Students zoned to Henry, Houston, Jenks, and Lingelbach are now zoned to Roxborough High School.[7] Students zoned to Roosevelt are now zoned to King High School.[8]



  1. ^ DeNardo, Mike (2013-06-19). "Germantown High School Graduates Its Final Class Ever". CBS Radio Inc. Retrieved 2013-10-16.
  2. ^ "Germantown High School Geographic Boundaries" (Archive). School District of Philadelphia. Retrieved on November 29, 2015.
  3. ^ "Forty years ago, Germantown-King pairing marred by neighborhood rivalries Archived 2017-02-02 at the Wayback Machine." Newsworks. January 31, 2013. Retrieved on November 18, 2018.
  4. ^ " An Uneasy Football Merger" slide 2. The New York Times. Retrieved on November 19, 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d Longman, Jéré (2013-08-03). "An Involuntary Union of Football Rivals for Philadelphia High Schools". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-11-18. Print: August 4, 2013, page SP1
  6. ^ a b "A Directory of High Schools for 2009 Admissions Archived 2015-11-28 at WebCite." School District of Philadelphia. Accessed November 6, 2008.
  7. ^ "High School Directory Fall 2017 Admissions" (Archive). School District of Philadelphia. p. 57/70. Retrieved on November 16, 2016.
  8. ^ "High School Directory Fall 2017 Admissions" (Archive). School District of Philadelphia. p. 39/70. Retrieved on November 16, 2016.
  9. ^ "In Memoriam: Honorable Frank K. Richardson". California Supreme Court Historical Society. Archived from the original on 2006-10-02. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
  10. ^

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°02′24″N 75°10′34″W / 40.040°N 75.176°W / 40.040; -75.176