Taos High School

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Taos High School
Taos Tigers Logo Trimmed From Banner.png
134 Cervantes Street
Taos, New Mexico New Mexico, 87571
United States
School type Public, high school
Founded 1917
School district Taos Municipal Schools (11 Schools 3,248+)
Dr. Lillian Torrez
Robbie Trujillo
Enrollment 953 (2011-2012 [1])
 • Grade 9 244
 • Grade 10 241
 • Grade 11 230
 • Grade 12 238
Campus Suburban
Color(s) Orange & Black        
Athletics conference NMAA - 2AAAA League
Mascot Tigers
Newspaper "Tigers' Roar"
Yearbook "Don Fernando"

Taos High School, founded in 1917, is the public high school in Taos, New Mexico, United States. It is located outside of Taos Pueblo, at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Approximately 25,000 people live in the area served by the Taos Municipal School District, which also includes Carson National Forest, Taos Pueblo and Taos Ski Valley.[2] The town of Taos is famous as an art colony and Taos High School cooperates extensively with the Taos Center for the Arts [3].

The U.S. News & World Report released its "America's Best High Schools" review that named Taos High School a "Silver Medal" school recognizing it as one of the top three high schools in the state of New Mexico. There were only three "Silver Medal" schools in the state, which acknowledge those high schools that best prepare their students for college including disadvantaged students. Taos High School was joined by La Cueva High School in Albuquerque and neighboring Los Alamos High School to receive this distinction. [4]


The first high school in Taos County opened in the fall of 1917 with Jesse Howard as director. The site of the first THS was west of the present Enos Garcia Elementary School. At the time the building was the Presbyterian Church, which included a few rooms for the first classes under the new teacher. Principal Emma McKean soon took charge of the school and remained at its head until 1921.

The first graduating class of Taos High was the 1921 class with seven members. During that year a new high school was constructed and served for 20 years. It was during this era that THS began offering student activities and clubs such as orchestra, glee club, 4-H, Future Farmers of America and drama. Tiger athletics were also established, beginning with basketball and track in 1923 and football in 1937. The Don Fernando yearbook and the Tigers' Roar newspaper first appeared during the 1937-1938 school year. Principals who followed McKean were Albright, Palmer, Don C. Piper, Ernest Lyckman, Wesley Freeburg, Culbert, Fred Jones, Jacob Bernal, Paul Springer and Joseph W. Evans.

In 1942, a new high school and gymnasium were constructed on Don Fernando Street due to increased enrollment. The former high school building was the new home of Taos Junior High School. Principals who served at this campus were Bright E. Greiner who served until 1955, Orlando Ortiz who served until 1959 and Bill Parr who served until 1967. The building is still in operation and the home of Enos Garcia Elementary School.

The Class of 1968 was the first to graduate from the current campus on Cervantes Street. In the fall of 1967, the modern complex of cinder blocks, tile floors and recessed lighting opened its doors to an estimated 800 sophomores, juniors and seniors. The new building was able to offer educational opportunities which were not available at the old THS because of cramped conditions. Among the improvements mentioned[specify] were a cafeteria and library located within the building, a student lounge, departmental sections and a landscaped patio.

The 2014-2015 school year marks the 97th anniversary of Taos High School and the 47th anniversary of its current campus.

Student Activities & Clubs [5][edit]

To the tune of Hail West Virginia
traditionally only the second verse is sung

Let's give a rah for dear ol' Taos High,
Let's rush on and not turn back,
Others may like the blue and gold, but for us it's Orange and Black!
Let all our troubles be forgotten, let Taos High spirit rule,
We'll join all our loyal efforts, for the good of our dear school!

It's dear ol' Taos High! It's dear ol' Taos High!
The pride of all the folks 'round here,
Come on you old grads, join with us young lads
It's dear ol' Taos High now we cheer!
Now is the time boys, to make a big noise
About Taos Valley's finest school
For there is naught to fear, the gang's all here
So Hail, to dear ol' Taos High, Hail!

Class of 1921
  • Band
  • Botball[1]
  • Business Professionals of America
  • Color Guard
  • Drama
  • Driven
  • Earth Club
  • Entrepreneurship Club
  • Envirothon
  • Freshmen Senate
  • Gay-Straight Alliance
  • German Club
  • Health Occupations Students of America
  • Journalism, Tigers' Roar
  • Junior Senate
  • National Honor Society
  • Mariachi El Tigre
  • Poetry
  • Science Bowl
  • Science Fair
  • Senior Senate
  • Ski Club
  • Snowboarding Club
  • Sophomore Senate
  • Speech & Debate
  • Student Government
  • Yearbook, Don Fernando

Student Body Statistics[edit]

Ethnic composition [6]

  • Hispanic: 49%
  • European American, not Hispanic: 41%
  • American Indian: 8%
  • Asian: 1%
  • African American: 1%

Gender composition [7]

  • Male: 51%
  • Female: 49%


Taos High School competes in the NMAA District 2-AAAA.

The first boys' basketball and track teams were organized for the 1923-1924 season. The first football team was organized in 1937.

The Tigers captured their first state championship in 1924 in boy's track. This win ended a four year streak held by the Albuquerque Bulldogs who took second place.

Taos High was a charter member of the Northern Rio Grande Conference established in 1946, along with El Rito, Espanola, Los Alamos, McCurdy, St. Catherine's, Santa Cruz and the U.S. Indian School competing for conference championships in football, boy's basketball, baseball and track. It remained a member of the NRGC through the 1962-1963 school year.

The Taos Tigers won their first Northern Rio Grande Conference (NRGC) football championship in 1951 by defeating the Espanola Hornets 58-0. The Tigers won their first NRGC basketball championship in 1948 also by defeating the Espanola Hornets. Their first conference baseball championship was in 1951.

Prior to 1954, Taos High School was a member of District 2 (1932–1949); District 9 (1950); District 11 (1951–1953)

THS Athletic Districts Year:
2-A 1954–1969
2-AAA 1970–2000
2-AAAA 2001–2010
2-AAA 2010–2014
2-AAAA 2014–present

State Championships[edit]

Current Teams[edit]

Taos High School participates in the following athletics [8]:


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°23′29″N 105°34′35″W / 36.39139°N 105.57639°W / 36.39139; -105.57639