High Point Central High School
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2012)|
|High Point Central High School|
|801 Ferndale Blvd.
High Point, North Carolina
|Newspaper||Pointer (no longer in publication)|
|Website||High Point Central High home page|
High Point Central High School is a public high school located in High Point, North Carolina. The school has a population of approximately 1,450 students in 9th–12th grades. The school's offerings include Advanced Placement classes and the International Baccalaureate degree program.
The High Point City Schools were established in 1897, but there was not a distinct high school until "High Point High School" was founded in 1926. The current building was erected in 1926 on what was formerly the High Point city fair grounds and is the oldest high school in Guilford County. It is an example of Gothic architecture, with three floors and four towers. Charles F. Thomlinson was the Chair of the school board when High Point High School was built. He was the first person to have a vision for what High Point High School should be like. The school's design was inspired by Grand Rapids Central High School. In 1926, T. Wingate Andrews (Superintendent of High Point City Schools) presided over the dedication of the building. In 1969, with the closing of High Point's William Penn High School a second high school in High Point (T. Wingate Andrews) ended High Point's era of School segregation. High Point High School was renamed "High Point Central High School" around 1962 and is so named today.
The current building was completed in 1926 and designed by Greensboro architect Harry Barton, in Collegiate Gothic style. The building was considered the grandest educational building in the state and was modern for its time. The building was decorated in tapestry brick with terracotta architectural ornamentation. The halls on the interior of the building had tile and terrazzo floors, intricate plaster moldings and ceiling medallions with cherubs, fine woodworking and custom cabinetry.
High Point High School was also outfitted with modern technological innovations for its time including a central vacuum system, and an innovative heating and air conditioning system. The three Gothic entrance towers, each four stories high, held an ice bin. Large fans circulated the cool air from the ice bins throughout the school. The melt water was intended to be used in the several water fountains throughout the campus.
The grounds of High Point High School were landscaped by prominent landscape architect Earl S. Draper, who had also designed the High Point suburb of Emerywood. The campus had a network of sidewalks, complemented by oak trees and shrubbery. The campus also had hedges surrounding the eastern and northern boundaries of the campus along Ferndale Boulevard and the sports field. A driveway for cars and buses ran along the front of the school and was cased by a grand gateway built of tapestry brick, and cast stone ornamentation. Sadly, much of the cast stone ornamentation was lost over the years to vandalism. The sports ground originally included a tennis court, baseball field, and a track and field. Over the years, it has grown to include a large gymnasium and an expanded tennis court.
In 1957, a new gymnasium was built on the sports ground, while a new cafeteria building was built in the rear courtyard of the main building. In 1962, a three story addition was added to the northwestern section of the school. This addition provided numerous classrooms and two modern science laboratories: a chemistry lab and a physics lab. In 1975, new windows were installed to replace the energy inefficient ones. The elegant gothic carved doors and transoms were gradually removed from the buildings main entrance in favor of new metal doors from 1977 to 1981.
High Point Central High School was extensively renovated in 2002. A new air conditioning system was installed after several heat waves occurred during the previous years, while the original radiators were scrapped. The ornate plaster ceilings were removed on all floors except for the first floor hall way in front of the theater in favor of cheap, drop-down, foam ceiling tiles. In 2003, a red awning was installed over the entrance of tower four. An aluminum covered walkway was also installed to provide shelter to the elementary students walking from the neighboring Tomlinson Montessori School, to the cafeteria for their lunch. In the late 2000s Tomlinson Montessori vacated their school building and High Point Central moved several classes to the building. The Academy at Central now occupies the Tomlinson Building. In 2010, funds were appropriated for the construction of a new addition and renovations to the 1957 gymnasium. The renovations are expected to be complete in time for the 2012-2013 basketball season.
High Point Central High is home to a strong International Baccalaureate program and Advanced Placement program. These programs offer students vigorous courses and college credit. Honors courses and College preparation courses are also offered as well. High Point Central High School's IB program is the only IB program offered in High Point and was established in 1995. AP courses have been offered at High Point Central since the 1970s.
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- "School Profile". High Point Central High School. Retrieved 2007-04-01.