Olathe Northwest High School

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Olathe Northwest High School
Olathe northwest high school raven logo.png
21300 College Blvd. [1]
Olathe, Kansas 66061
United States
Coordinates 38°55′45″N 94°49′57″W / 38.92917°N 94.83250°W / 38.92917; -94.83250Coordinates: 38°55′45″N 94°49′57″W / 38.92917°N 94.83250°W / 38.92917; -94.83250
School type Public, High School
Established 2003
School district Unified School District 233
CEEB code 172225 [2]
Principal Chris Zuck
Grades 9–12
Enrollment 1,784
Campus Suburban

Blue, black, and white

Athletics conference Sunflower League
Mascot Ravens
Rival Olathe North High School

Olathe Northwest High School is a fully accredited public high school located in Olathe, Kansas, United States, serving students in grades 9–12. The school is one of four high schools in the Olathe School District and also one of the twelve in the Sunflower League. The school colors are blue, black, and white, and the school mascot is the Raven. The annual enrollment is 2,000 students for 2014–15. Olathe Northwest was established in 2003 to help educate the rapidly increasing population of Olathe. Olathe Northwest is a member of the Kansas State High School Activities Association and offers a variety of sports programs. Athletic teams compete in the 6A division and are known as the "Ravens". Extracurricular activities are also offered in the form of performing arts, school publications, and clubs.

According to the 2014–15 demographic information, 77% of students are Caucasian, 10% Hispanic, 5% African-American, 5% Asian, and 3% Native-American/Pacific-Islander/Multi-Race.[citation needed]

There are 537 freshmen, 549 sophomores, 475 juniors and 439 seniors. With 43% of the 2000 being female and 57% being male.[citation needed]


Olathe Northwest High School was established in 2003 and celebrated its 10th school year with a homecoming event on September 21, 2012.


Olathe Northwest achieved the Kansas State Department of Education "Standard of Excellence" for the 2011–12 school year.[3]

Classroom technology[edit]

When the school first opened, students were issued an Palm M515 model Personal digital assistant. After three years of use, those palms were deemed obsolete, and the district upgraded the school to the X. Over the next few years, the school gradually phased out this program, and students are no longer issued PDAs. The school also uses ceiling-mounted projectors and Smart boards for classroom presentations.[4] Students are now able to bring in their own personal device and use it on the school's wireless network.


Students in the e-Communication program, or e-Comm, have opportunities to advance their interests in web design, video production (entertainment and convergence journalism), graphic design and animation. The school is equipped with a television studio, numerous video editing suites, and several computer lab classrooms with the latest large display Apple iMac computers equipped with industry standard software for all strands of e-Comm. The e-Comm program allows students to experience each different strand, then pick a strand on which to focus. e-Comm engages students and helps to give them a foundation in their chosen strand. e-Comm even offers students a chance to enter in a multimedia festival called eMagine created and run by the e-Communication program. [5]

Engineering Academy[edit]

Students in the Engineer's Academy are immersed in nearly every major engineering discipline through a wide array of coursework including a materials and processing chemistry course and CAD courses during their sophomore year, as well as additional CAD coursework along with a paired physics and mathematics/project course. During their senior year students have the options of joining a senior project including the Battlebots project team, the Electrathon project team, an internship with a local business, or the FIRST Robotics team.[6]

Extracurricular activities[edit]

Olathe Northwest students showing their spirit

The Ravens compete in the Sunflower League and are classified as a 6A school, the largest classification in Kansas according to the Kansas State High School Activities Association. A few graduates have gone on to participate in Division I, Division II, and Division III athletics.



In 2004, the first year of varsity play, the team went 2–7, achieving their first ever win against Shawnee Mission Northwest.[7] In the next year of varsity play, they improved to 4–5.[8] The 2006 squad finished at 3–7 but made the playoffs which was a first in school history.[9] The 2014 team had the program's first winning record and beat cross-town rival Olathe East for the first time in school history.

Boys' basketball[edit]

The Raven boys' basketball team went to the state tournament during the 2016–17 season.


In 2007, the ONW Baseball team became Co-Sunflower League Champions for the first time in school history. The team finished with a record of 12–8. The squad has reached the Regional Championship game twice in 2004 and 2005, falling one game short of the state tournament. In the 2003–04 season, the first year the school opened, the Ravens entered into regional play as the bottom seed and drew Mill Valley High School, the No. 1 team in 5A. The Ravens defeated Mill Valley in one of the biggest upsets in Kansas high school baseball history.[10]

Nate Tenbrink, a third baseman, along with swimmer, Griffin Knipp, became the school's first Division I athletes in 2006 when he signed to play baseball at Kansas State University.[11] Tenbrink was drafted as the 222nd overall pick in the 7th round of the 2008 Major League Baseball Draft by the Seattle Mariners.[12]


The 2014–15 and 2016–17 bowling men's varsity team won the city competition beating cross-town rivals Olathe North.

Girls' basketball[edit]

The Lady Ravens broke a couple of records in their 2015 season, but they did not enjoy the way it ended with a 51–45 loss to Blue Valley in sub state, finishing with a 9–12 record. Their records include most three pointers made in state with seventeen and most three pointers attempted with forty-three.


In 2009 the Lady Ravens girls' softball team ended with a perfect season of 25–0. The team then continued on to win the 2009 Kansas State High School Championship title against Washburn Rural High School. In May 2011, entering the postseason as the number 6 seed in 6A, the Ravens captured their second title, beating Washburn Rural 9–1.


The 2014–15 team placed 12th in state, the best finish ONW has had. The team had six wrestlers qualify for state, three of whom placed.


In 2010 the girls' varsity team went 11–0 in the Sunflower League and claimed its first league championship in the school's history.

State championships[edit]

State Championships[13]
Season Sport/Activity Number of Championships Year
Spring Softball 2 2009, 2011
Total 2

Non-athletic programs[edit]

ONW publications[edit]

The Raven's Beak is the monthly school newspaper published by a student-run staff. Evermore is the school yearbook, run by a large staff that distributes the book during the summer. Undefined was also a literary magazine published until 2007 when the class was terminated due to low enrollment. A new literary magazine, the Aviary, was started in late 2015 and is currently being published. Journalism 1 and photojournalism classes are also offered.[citation needed]

In 2007, the department was awarded the "First Amendment Press Freedom Award" in Denver by the Journalism Education Association. Also in 2007, The Raven's Beak was nominated for the prestigious NSPA "Pacemaker" award, known as the nation's top prize in scholastic journalism, and was the first high-school newspaper in the Olathe School District to earn this honor. Evermore was also awarded a "Best in Show" at the 2007 JEA/NSPA Fall National High School Journalism Convention in Philadelphia. In September 2008, it was announced that The Raven's Beak was nominated for a Pacemaker for a second straight year by the NSPA. On November 15 at the NSPA Conference in St. Louis, Missouri, The Raven's Beak won the Pacemaker, the first Olathe school to take home the honor.

ONW NOW[edit]

ONW NOW is a weekly 10-minute school news broadcast produced by Olathe Northwest students as part of the e-Communication program. The program is aired to the school on Wednesdays during a specially designated time in which the entire student body watches. The show consists of five minutes of daily announcements along with news packages about school and community-related events, and five minutes of a sports news show, titled GameDay: Northwest started in 2011.

In 2008, ONW NOW produced their first live show on April 4, after previously using a "live to tape" format.[citation needed]

Raven bands[edit]

The Olathe Northwest band program includes over two hundred students. There are four concert ensembles: the Concert Band, Symphonic Band, audition-only Wind Ensemble, and an audition-only Raven Winds, the latter three forming the marching band during the fall. The schools' marching band is known as the "Raven Pride Marching Band" and has performed at football, basketball, and volleyball games as well as in school spirit assemblies. Their field shows have been "Sir Elton John" (2013), "The Sound Of Music" (2014), "Let Freedom Ring" (2015) which won the Neowollah Marching Festival, and "Turandot" (2016) which earned them the Grand Champions title at the 2016 Heart of America Marching Festival. In November 2014, the marching band traveled to New York City and marched in the annual Veteran's Day Parade. As of 2016, they are the largest band in the state of Kansas.[citation needed]

Debate and forensics[edit]

At the National Speech and Debate Tournament in the summer of 2014, ONW Senior Debater Alaina Walberg placed first overall, earning the title of Number One Speaker in the country. Walberg now attends Baylor University as part of the debate squad. As of December 17, 2015, Olathe Northwest is ranked 2nd in Kansas and 12th in the nation[14] for speech and debate.[citation needed]

Olathe Northwest orchestra[edit]

The Olathe Northwest Orchestra program is split into three separate orchestras: the Freshmen Orchestra (open to freshmen), the Concert Orchestra (open to sophomores through seniors), and the Chamber/Advanced Orchestra (open to sophomores through seniors by audition). The Olathe Northwest Orchestra has four major performances in each school year. The members have also traveled and performed in Chicago, Boston, the Disney Festival at the EPCOT Center in Orlando, Florida, and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.[15]

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Official sites