Great Mills High School

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Great Mills High School
Seal of Great Mills High School(Trademark of Great Mills High School)
Great Mills, Maryland
United States
Type Public Secondary
Motto "Forward Ever, Backwards Never"
Established 1929
School district St. Mary's County Public Schools
Principal Jake Heibel
Grades 9–12
Enrollment 1,654 (2012–2013)
Campus Suburban
Color(s) Green and Gold
Mascot Hornets
Faculty 149
Great Mills High School marching band at 4th of July Parade at Fairfax, Virginia

Great Mills High School is a comprehensive public high school in Great Mills, Maryland, United States. It serves students in grades 9–12 in the mixed rural and suburban area at the confluence of the Potomac River, Patuxent River, and Chesapeake Bay. It belongs to the St. Mary's County Public Schools system, and is associated with two other county high schools: Leonardtown High School and Chopticon High School. The school is accredited by the Middle States Colleges and Secondary Schools and the Maryland State Department of Education.

The school has an enrollment of more than 1,600, with an ethnic makeup reflecting the community: 51% Caucasian, 40% African American, 5% Asian, 4% Hispanic, 1% other. Many of the families are employed by NAS Patuxent River, government contractors, St. Mary's College of Maryland, and others involved in the area's traditional agricultural and water-related businesses.

Great Mills High School is among the oldest continually operating school in St. Mary's County and the State of Maryland. It was founded in 1929 as one of the original high schools in the county. The campus now encompasses several acres and has a football, soccer, and field hockey field and uses a county pool next door.

The school houses a STEM program.

Great Mills High School athletes are known as the Hornets. Great Mills High School Athletics belongs to the Southern Maryland Athletic Conference and competes in Division 3A in state competitions.

The current principal of Great Mills is Jake Heibel.

2018 shooting[edit]

On March 20, 2018, 17-year-old student Austin Rollins opened fire in a hallway at the school with a 9mm Glock handgun,[1] fatally wounding 16-year-old student Jaelynn Willey before exchanging fire with school resource officer Blaine Gaskill, who had responded to the scene. A 14-year-old student, Desmond Barnes, was wounded, while Rollins was shot and later died at the hospital.[2][3] Authorities later determined that Rollins died from a self-inflicted gunshot to the head.[4] Gaskill, 34, was a six-year veteran of the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office trained in special weapons and tactics.[5][6] The perpetrator, Rollins, was previously in a relationship with Willey.[7][2] The gun Rollins used was legally owned by his father, according to the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office.[8] Willey was taken off life support on March 22, 2018, after being declared brain dead, and died soon after.[9]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "The suspected Great Mills shooter, a teen, used a handgun. It's tough for adults to buy one in Maryland". Baltimore Sun. March 20, 2018. Retrieved March 21, 2018. 
  2. ^ a b Hendrix, Steve (March 20, 2018). "School resource officer Blaine Gaskill helped stop gunman at a Maryland high school". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 21, 2018. 
  3. ^ "Maryland school shooter used father's gun". NBC News. Retrieved 2018-06-05. 
  4. ^ "Student gunman died of self-inflicted gunshot to head in Md. school shooting". Washington Post. March 26, 2018. Retrieved March 27, 2018. 
  5. ^ "5 things to know about Md. SRO Blaine Gaskill". Retrieved March 21, 2018. 
  6. ^ "Sheriff: Teenager dead, 2 wounded in high school shooting in southern Maryland". Associated Press. March 20, 2018. 
  7. ^ Joyce, Kathleen (March 20, 2018). "Shooting at Great Mills High School in Maryland, school confirms". Fox News. Retrieved March 21, 2018. 
  8. ^ "Md. School Shooter Used Father's Gun to Shoot Ex-Girlfriend: Authorities". NBC 4 Washington D.C. March 21, 2018. Retrieved March 22, 2018. 
  9. ^ Eric Levenson, Carma Hassan and Joe Sterling. "Girl critically wounded in Maryland school shooting dies". CNN. Retrieved March 23, 2018. 
  10. ^ "Great Mills High School" (video). Great Mills, Maryland (published December 22, 2010). December 2, 2010. Retrieved March 21, 2018. 
  11. ^ "Maryland Manual, current Associate Judge on District Court". [dead link]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°14′49.23″N 76°29′19.33″W / 38.2470083°N 76.4887028°W / 38.2470083; -76.4887028