Joseph Wheeler High School

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Joseph Wheeler High School
375 Holt Rd.


United States
Coordinates33°57′32″N 84°28′40″W / 33.958841°N 84.477775°W / 33.958841; -84.477775Coordinates: 33°57′32″N 84°28′40″W / 33.958841°N 84.477775°W / 33.958841; -84.477775
TypePublic high school
PrincipalDr. Peter Giles
Number of students2,161 (2015-16)[1]
Wheeler High School entrance

Wheeler High School is located in northeast Cobb County, Georgia, United States. It is near the city of Marietta, about 15 miles (24 km) northwest of downtown Atlanta. Wheeler has been in operation since 1965. It is a public high school of the State of Georgia and is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Georgia High School Association.

Notable achievements[edit]

Newsweek magazine ranked Wheeler in the top 5% of high schools in America in 2007, and Atlanta Magazine named Wheeler number 3 of the top 32 high schools in Georgia in 2006.

Wheeler's basketball team, led by coach Doug Lipscomb, is a nationally ranked program, winning four state titles between 2002 and 2009. Wheeler won the state title in 1994, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2009 and 2015. It was also the state runner-up in 1995, 2008 and 2014. The school has had many wins over regional teams from Alabama, Oregon, Arizona, New York, Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Canada. Many of Lipscomb's players have gone on to play D-1 Basketball. Four of his players have gone on to play in the NBA.[citation needed] Lipscomb was also a coach for the east in the 2010 McDonald's All American Game (where he coached his own player Jelan Kendrick). Other players to come out of the Wheeler program include J.J. Hickson, Shareef Abdur-Rahim, and Jaylen Brown.

The robotics organization, known as the CircuitRunners[2], participates in the FIRST Robotics Competition, the FIRST Tech Challenge, and the BEST Robotics Competition each year, and has earned the Chairman's Award three years in a row.

The 2005 one-act play Jerry Finnegan's Sister won the Region and State titles.

The policy debate team[3] is nationally competitive. Wheeler teams compete in tournaments all over the country. Some of these tournaments are held at Emory University, Wake Forest University, and Glenbrook North High School and Glenbrook South High School in Illinois.

Students have received national recognition in prestigious science competitions including semifinalists in the Intel Science Talent Search and the Siemens Westinghouse Competition in 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2009, and semifinalists in the Young Epidemiology Scholars (YES) Competition in 2006 and 2007.

Wheeler's club water polo team, founded in 2006 by Owen Sweitzer and expanded by former coach Richard Tavernaro in 2007, competes around the Atlanta area. For the 2016 season, the club finished first in Division 2.[4] The 2017 team won the Division 1 state title, and the girls' team won the regular season division championship.[5] Wheeler student Cameron Ragan was named to the girls' all-state team, and Wheeler students Tristan Hollon-Brooks and Brian Kent were named to the Division 1 All-State team. The team encourages other schools to form water polo programs and is responsible for the growth of interest in the sport in Georgia. Due to Wheeler's efforts, water polo may become a varsity sport in the future.

Wheeler offers a wide range of courses, including honors courses, more than 25 AP classes and many post-AP courses, including Genetics, Robotics, and Internship classes. Wheeler also has technical/vocational courses for those seeking a vocational diploma. The Center for Advanced Studies offers dual college prep and technology seals on a participant's high school diploma.

Wheeler is home to the award-winning Wildcat Pride Marching Band, directed by Mark Hoskins. In fall of 2013, the Wildcat Pride presented the show Daydream Portraits and won first in the Silver Division (Classes AA and AAA) at the White Columns Invitational. The band then won first overall at the LaFayette Classic. The Wheeler Jazz Band, also directed by Mark Hoskins, attended the GMEA District 12 Jazz Performance Evaluations in 2014 and received superior ratings.

In 2015, a team of students from Wheeler's Center for Advanced Studies won the Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge, an international competition designed to honor the spirit of Pete Conrad by encouraging innovation in students.[6][7][8]

The Center For Advanced Studies in Science, Math, & Technology[edit]

Wheeler High School's Center For Advanced Studies in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) began teaching classes in 1999. Since then, it has accepted about 100 rising freshmen every year and has become the top magnet program in Georgia. In 2012, Wheeler's magnet program was pronounced the first STEM-certified high school program in the state of Georgia, and in 2016 was the first to gain re-certification. Wheeler's program is a member of the National Consortium for Specialized Secondary Schools of Mathematics, Science, and Technology, offering an advanced curriculum to highly motivated students.[9] The rigorous coursework allows magnet students to begin taking college-level courses in math and science by eleventh grade and participating in internships at local businesses by twelfth grade. The program's original founder, Cathy Banks, died on November 9, 2013. In 2014 the magnet program earned the STEM Certified School Outreach from Tag-Ed,[10] a Georgia STEM organization.

The Center for Advanced Studies at Wheeler High School became the state of Georgia's first STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) Certified Program in the Spring of 2017. [11]


Admission to the program is open to any rising ninth-graders in Cobb County, Georgia. Interested students must submit an application by the deadline.[12]


The Center for Advanced studies strongly emphasizes the math and science programs, but encourages students to pursue high-level social studies and English as well. Students take two science credits each year (one per semester) and at least one math course (though some students choose to double up here as well). By their junior year, students are taking primarily AP and post-AP science and math courses. Students are also encouraged to take honors and AP level history, English, and foreign languages.[13]


Wheeler High School has been under heavy construction since 2011 to get a new building. The area around the magnet building was expanded to house a new gym and a performing arts center.

State championships[edit]

  • Boys' basketball: 1994, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2009, 2015
  • One-act play: 2005
  • Boys' track: 2003
  • Girls' basketball: 1998
  • Wrestling: 1985
  • Golf: 1976
  • Baseball: 1975
  • Softball: 1983, 1984
  • Water Polo 2017

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Wheeler High School". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved November 25, 2018.
  2. ^ "CircuitRunners". Retrieved 19 December 2015.
  3. ^ Archived 2007-09-30 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Properties, Swingle. "Georgia High School Water Polo Association - Official Website - Schedules, Scores, News, Awards, Fans, Officials". Retrieved 2017-10-18.
  5. ^ Properties, Swingle. "Georgia High School Water Polo Association - Official Website - Schedules, Scores, News, Awards, Fans, Officials". Retrieved 2017-10-18.
  6. ^ "2015 Winning Teams". Conrad Spirit of Innovation Challenge. Retrieved 2015-09-20.
  7. ^ "Wheeler Magnet Team Wins Conrad Innovation Power Pitch Challenge - East Cobber". East Cobber. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-09-20.
  8. ^ "Wheeler High School". Retrieved 2015-09-20.
  9. ^ "Wheeler Magnet School - The Center for Advanced Studies. Leading the Nation in STEM Education". Retrieved 19 December 2015.
  10. ^ "Winners Announced for Third Annual STEM Education Awards". TAG EDUCATION COLLABORATIVE. Retrieved 19 December 2015.
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Wheeler Magnet School - The Center for Advanced Studies". Retrieved 19 December 2015.
  13. ^ "Wheeler Magnet School - The Center for Advanced Studies". Retrieved 19 December 2015.
  14. ^ [1] Archived 2016-08-03 at the Wayback Machine.
  15. ^ "Douglas Lima MMA Bio". Retrieved 2014-01-01.
  16. ^ "Cale Yarbrough UFC Bio". Retrieved 2014-01-01.

External links[edit]