Pine-Richland High School

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Pine-Richland High School
Map of Allegheny County Pennsylvania School Districts.png
700 Warrendale Road
Gibsonia, Pennsylvania

School districtPine-Richland School District
SuperintendentBrian Miller, 2013-2017 [1][2]
PrincipalNancy Bowman
Enrollment1,538 (2015-16)[3]
Color(s)Green and white          
Athletics conferenceWPIAL section 6A
Tuition$9,633.40 (for nonresident and charter school students)[4]
Information(724) 625-4444

Pine-Richland High School is a large public high school located at 700 Warrendale Road, in Gibsonia, Pennsylvania, United States. It is the only high school in the Pine-Richland School District and is located in Pine Township.

In 2015, the school's enrollment was 1,538 pupils. In 2013, it was reported that 5% of students were from low-income homes and 11% received special education services. Eight percent of students were identified as gifted.[5] Pine-Richland is 88% white, with other ethnicities comprising 12% of the student population.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2010, the school reported an enrollment of 1,467 pupils in grades 9 through 12, with 81 pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch. The school employed 101 teachers, yielding a student teacher ratio of 14:1.[6] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of its teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[7]


Richland High School was opened in September 1956, which allowed the students who transferred from other schools to spend the final two years of their public education at PRHS, along Bakerstown-Warrendale Road in Richland Township. The first class graduated in June, 1958. The former building closed in 1993 and became Richland Elementary School in 1994. The new high school became Pine-Richland High School, and was opened at its current location in Pine Township in 1993.

The Pine-Richland Stadium was built on the new secondary campus between the middle school and the high school in 2001.

The current building was opened in 1993, with one gymnasium, a pool, nearly 80 classrooms, office space, and a large auditorium. An addition opened in 2000 with modifications to the original building, plus nearly 30 more classrooms, a new gymnasium, and the new district office. Another addition to the school was completed in October 2012, adding a new STEAM wing and more classrooms.


Newsweek magazine ranked PRHS 841 out of the top schools in the US in 2009, and PRHS was the fourth highest ranked high school in Pennsylvania.

U.S. News and World Report awarded Pine-Richland High School a Silver Rating, placing it in the top 604 in the nation. Students continuously outperform national standards, particularly in the sciences and math. The school has a graduation rate between 93-98%, depending on the graduating class. A number of students go on to ivy league or equally high caliber schools each year.

Western Pennsylvania region ranking[edit]

In 2015, Pine-Richland's eleventh grade ranked 7th out of 121 western Pennsylvania high schools based on the past three years of student academic achievement in Pennsylvania System of School Assessments (PSSA) in reading, math, writing and three years of science.[8] This includes schools in Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Westmoreland, and Washington Counties.

Pine-Richland High School took advantage of a state program called Science in Motion which brought college professors and sophisticated science equipment to the school to raise science awareness and to provide inquiry-based experiences for the students. The program was funded by a state appropriation, and cost the school nothing to participate.[9] Westminster College provided the science enrichment experiences to schools in the region.

College remediation rate[edit]

According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education study released in January 2009, 21% of Pine-Richland High School graduates required remediation in mathematics and/or reading before they were prepared to take college level courses in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education or community colleges.[10] Fewer than 66% of Pennsylvania high school graduates who enroll in a four-year college in Pennsylvania will earn a bachelor's degree within six years. Among Pennsylvania high school graduates pursuing an associate degree, only one in three graduate in three years.[11] Per the Pennsylvania Department of Education, one in three recent high school graduates who attend Pennsylvania's public universities and community colleges takes at least one remedial course in math, reading or English.

Classrooms for the Future grant[edit]

The Classrooms for the Future state program provided districts with hundreds of thousands in extra state funding to buy laptop computers for each core curriculum high school class (English, science, history, math) and paid for teacher training to optimize the computers' use. The program was funded from 2006 to 2009. Pine-Richland School District applied to participate in 2006-07, receiving $314,383. In 2007-08, the school received $300,000, and in 2008-09 received another $45,413, for a total funding of $659,796.[12]

In Allegheny County the highest award, $835,286, was given to Highlands School District. The highest funding statewide was awarded to Philadelphia City School District in Philadelphia County - $9,409,073. In 2010, Classrooms for the Future funding was curtailed statewide due to a massive state financial crisis.

Dual enrollment[edit]

Pine-Richland High School offers a dual enrollment program.[13] This state program permits high school students to take courses at local higher education institutions, to earn college credits. Students remain enrolled at their high schools. The courses count towards high school graduation requirements as well as towards earning a college degree. The students continue to have full access to activities and programs at their high school. Pine-Richland High School has agreements with the Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC), University of Pittsburgh and LaRoche College. The University of Pittsburgh and LaRoche College-approved courses are taught during the school day by Pine-Richland High School faculty members who are certified as adjunct professors. The college credits are offered at a deeply discounted rate. Initially, the state offered a small grant to assist students in costs for tuition, fees and books.[14] Under the Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement, many Pennsylvania colleges and universities accept these credits for students who transfer to their institutions.[15] The grant was discontinued by then Governor Edward Rendell in 2010 due to a multi-billion-dollar state budget shortfall.

For the 2009-10 funding year, Pine-Richland received a state grant of $5,691 for the program.[16]

Graduation requirements[edit]

The Pine-Richland School Board has determined that a pupil must earn 24 credits to graduate. Details on credits and graduation needs may be found on the school's website. [17]

By Pennsylvania School Board regulations, for the graduating class of 2017, students must demonstrate successful completion of secondary level course work in Algebra I, Biology, English Composition, and Literature, for which the Keystone Exams serve as the final course exams. Students' Keystone Exam scores count for at least one-third of the final course grade.[18][19][20]

In 2011, Pennsylvania high school students field tested the Algebra 1, Biology and English Literature exams. The statewide results were: Algebra 1 38% on grade level, Biology 35% on grade level and English Lit 49% on grade level.[21] Individual student, school or district reports were not made public, although they were reported to district officials by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Early graduation[edit]

Students may chose to carry eight credits each year and/or take courses during the summer in order to graduate at the end of their junior year. These pupils may choose when to participate in a high school graduation ceremony.

AP courses[edit]

Students have access to a wide variety of AP Courses. They have the option of taking these College Board-approved courses and then taking the College Board's examination in the spring. Students who achieve a 3 or better on the exam may be awarded college credits at US universities and colleges. Each higher education institution sets its own standards for what level of credits are awarded to a student based on AP exam scores. Most give credits for scores of 4 or 5; some also give credits for scores of 3. High schools give credits towards graduation to students who take the school's AP classes. In 2013, 100% of Pine-Richland School District students who took an AP course scored a 3 or better on the exams.

College Board Award[edit]

In 2011, Pine-Richland School District achieved the College Board's AP District of the Year Award. This honor roll consists of the 388 US public school districts that simultaneously achieved increases in access to AP courses for a broader number of students and also maintained or improved the rate at which their AP students earned scores of 3 or higher on an AP exam.[22]


Students who live in the Pine-Richland School District's attendance area may choose to attend one of Pennsylvania's 157 public charter schools. A student living in a neighboring public school district, or a foreign exchange student, may seek admission to Pine-Richland School District. In these cases, the Pennsylvania Department of Education sets an annual tuition rate for each school district. This is the amount the public school district pays to a charter school for each resident student that attends the charter, and it is the amount a nonresident student's parents must pay to attend the district's schools. The 2012 tuition rate was $7,927.55 for the high school.[23]

Highmark Healthy High 5 grant[edit]

Pine-Richland School District participated in Highmark Healthy High 5 Health eTools for Schools, which enabled mobile data collection of pertinent health and physical fitness screening data on students K-12 in a database held by InnerLink, Inc. in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Health eTools for Schools also provided interdisciplinary research-based curriculum in nutrition, physical education and physical activity to participating districts. The program was discontinued in 2013.[24]

School safety and bullying[edit]

The Pine-Richland School District administration reported there were 29 incidents of bullying in the school in 2012. There were 10 incidents involving local police including bomb threats and weapons in the school building.[25] Each year the school safety data is reported by the district to the Safe School Center, which publishes the reports online.

The Pine-Richland School Board has provided the district's anti-bullying policy online.[26] All Pennsylvania schools are required to have an anti-bullying policy incorporated into their Code of Student Conduct. The policy must identify disciplinary actions for bullying and designate a school staff person to receive complaints. The policy must be available on the school's website and posted in every classroom. All Pennsylvania public schools must provide a copy of its anti-bullying policy to the Office for Safe Schools every year, and shall review their policy every three years. The district must conduct an annual review of that policy with students. Even though this policy is reviewed with students once annually, it is not enforced by administration or staff members at Pine-Richland High School. [27] The Center for Schools and Communities works in partnership with the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency and the Pennsylvania Department of Education to assist schools and communities as they research, select and implement bullying prevention programs and initiatives.[28][29]

Education standards relating to student safety and anti-harassment programs are described in section 10.3. Safety and Injury Prevention in the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Health, Safety and Physical Education.[30]

On September 12, 2016, the Board of Directors of Pine-Richland School District voted 5 to 4 to preventing transgender students from using the bathroom facility of their expressed gender identity, in opposition of Federal Title IX protections.[31] At least 15 students left school after being a victim of bullying following the change, stating they "no longer felt safe around their fellow students at school".[32]


The Pine-Richland School District offers a wide variety of clubs, activities and an extensive, costly sports program. Eligibility for participation is determined by school board policy and in compliance with standards set by the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA). The district charges a year fee of $100 for students who participate in extracurriculars.

By Pennsylvania law, all K-12 students residing in the district, including those who attend a private nonpublic school, cyber charter school, or charter school, or are homeschooled, are eligible to participate in the extracurricular programs, including all athletics. They must meet the same eligibility rules as the students enrolled in the district's schools.[33]

Pine Richland offers a Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps program that stresses honor and commitment, which mostly enforces rules of the armed forces, and more often than not encourages military enrollment.


The Annual Pine Richland Art Show takes place at the beginning of May, showing portfolios of Advanced Placement art students and alumni.

The band course contains both a fall/winter marching band section and a later year ensemble experience. The Pine-Richland Rams Marching Band has a yearly repertoire consisting of an "opener," a tuba feature, a band dance (during which the drumline is featured), a colorguard feature, a dance team feature, a closer, and various other songs. The second part of the band course, the ensemble band, focuses on musical ability. Jazz Ensemble provides a venue where well-performing students can play jazz and blues music. Each year the school features a musical for which students must try out, including music from a selected pit orchestra.

The school competes at the Gene Kelly Awards each year, an award ceremony for local high schools in the greater Pittsburgh area.

The school has a chapter of the International Thespian Society. Each fall, the club sponsors a fall production.

Pine-Richland has an video production program that is offered to all grades.


The Pine-Richland High School's mascot is the Ram. The Rams baseball, girls soccer, hockey, gymnastics, and volleyball teams were all state champions in the 2005-2006 school year. There were five state championship teams in 2006: girls volleyball, girls soccer, baseball, boys tennis doubles, and gymnastics. In 2005 the girls soccer team defeated the number one ranked team in the nation to win their first PIAA state title. In 2006, the Pine-Richland wrestling team were section champions. Pine Richland's competition cheerleading team was 3rd in the nation in the 2012-2013 school year. In November 2014, the football team won the AAAA WPIAL Championship against defending champion Pittsburgh Central Catholic. In December 2014, the football team was the PIAA state championship AAAA runner-up. The crew team has the coxswain that went with Big Austin "Switchblade" during MidWest 2016, thus preventing the Marietta High School 2V from racing.



Annual lip dub[edit]

In 2014, Pine-Richland High School saw viral success with their lip dub of American Authors' song "Best Day of my Life." It was featured on local news outlets and seen across the world on Yahoo! Sports.[35] As of January 2016 the video had nearly 300,000 views on YouTube.[36]

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Trozzo, Sandy, "Pine-Richland hires Miller as new superintendent", The Post Gazette, April 11, 2013
  2. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Education Names and Addresses, 2013
  3. ^ "Pine-Richland HS". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
  4. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Tuition rates per LEA, 2011
  5. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 4, 2013). "School Performance Profile - Pine-Richland High School Fact Facts".
  6. ^ National Center for Education Statistics, Common Care Data - Pine-Richland High School, 2010
  7. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Professional Qualifications of Teachers Pine-Richland High School, September 29, 2011
  8. ^ The Rankings: Eleventh grade, Pittsburgh Business Times, April 4, 2013
  9. ^ The Pennsylvania Basic Education/Higher Education Science and Technology Partnership, Science in Motion annual report, 2012
  10. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (January 20, 2009). "Pennsylvania College Remediation Report,". Archived from the original on May 3, 2012.
  11. ^ National Center for Education Statistics, IPEDS Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, 2008
  12. ^ Pennsylvania Auditor General (December 22, 2008). "Classrooms for the Future grants audit" (PDF).
  13. ^ Pine-Richalnd Guidance Department (2012). "Pine-Richalnd Dual Enrollment Program".
  14. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Dual Enrollment Guidelines".
  15. ^ Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (March 2010). "Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation Agreement".
  16. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2009). "Dual Enrollment Grants 2009 10 Fall Grants by School District".
  17. ^ Details on credits and graduation needs
  18. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2010). "Keystone Exam Overview" (PDF).
  19. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 2011). "Pennsylvania Keystone Exams Overview". Archived from the original on 2012-03-17.
  20. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education (2010). "Rules and Regulation Title 22 PA School Code CH. 4".
  21. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2011). "Keystone Exams".
  22. ^ College Board, 2011 AP® District of the Year Awards, March 11, 2011
  23. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (May 2012). "Pennsylvania Public School District Tuition Rates".
  24. ^ PR Newswire, Highmark Healthy High 5 Health eTools for Schools Available Free Through 2009, 2007
  25. ^ Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Safe School Center (2012). "Pennsylvania Safe Schools Online Reports - Pine-Richland High School" (PDF).
  26. ^ Pine-Richland School Board (January 6, 2009). "Bullying/Cyberbullying Policy 249," (PDF).
  27. ^ Pennsylvania General Assembly (2006). "Regular Session 2007–2008 House Bill 1067, Act 61 Section 6 page 8".
  28. ^ Center for Safe Schools of Pennsylvania (2006). "Bullying Prevention advisory".
  29. ^ Pennsylvania Department of 10Education (2012). "Bullying, Hazing, and Harassment Resources". Archived from the original on 2011-11-21.
  30. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education (January 11, 2003). "Pennsylvania Academic Standards Health, Safety and Physical Education".
  31. ^ "BoardDocs® Agenda Item: 2.07 Resolution #2". Retrieved 2016-09-16.
  32. ^ "Transgender Pine-Richland Student: 'I Really Don't Feel Safe'". Retrieved 2016-09-16.
  33. ^ Pennsylvania Office of the Governor Press Release (November 10, 2005). "Home-Schooled, Charter School Children Can Participate in School District Extracurricular Activities".
  34. ^ Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletics Association (2013). "PIAA School Directory".
  35. ^
  36. ^