Thomas McKean High School

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Thomas McKean High School
301 McKennan's Church Rd.
Wilmington, Delaware
United States
Type Public
Motto Its a great day to be a highlander
Established 1966
School district Red Clay Consolidated School District
Principal Brian Mattix
Grades 9-12
Enrollment 1062 students (as of 2007)
Athletics conference Blue Hen Conference - Flight B
Mascot Highlander
Rival Dickinson
Accreditation Middle States Association’s Commission on Secondary Schools

Thomas McKean High School is a comprehensive public high school located on 301 McKennan's Church Road in Wilmington, Delaware. The school opened in December, 1966, and graduated its first class in June 1967.


Having selected Thomas McKean, a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence, as its namesake, the school followed several traditions associated with the Scottish heritage of Thomas McKean. The mascot is a fierce Highlander, wearing a kilt made of the tartan of the Clan MacDonald. Among the dominant colors of the plaid are blue and green, the school's colors. In addition, the names of the school newspaper - Minstrel - and the yearbook - Talisman - reflect the culture of the Scottish Highlands. The Minstrel is headed by Junior Catherine Gillette, who is also its editor.

Physical building[edit]

Originally designed as a model school for flexible scheduling, the building has several unique features and has proven adaptable to many situations. The school expanded in 1972, adding a new wing to the building as well as adding ninth grade to the student body. Thus, the class of 1976 was the first to spend four years at McKean.[1] The school is currently undergoing construction to update the labs and slowly upgrading the school's internal computer network. A new band room and several other new rooms are also being constructed.

Enrollment decline[edit]

According to the Delaware School Profiles, Thomas McKean High School is currently declining in enrollment. This may be due to a mix of changing area demographics, the Delaware school choice system, and increasing enrollment at charter and magnet schools across the state.

In the year 2001, 1,354 students were enrolled at Thomas McKean High School. By the year 2007, 1,062 students were enrolled, a 19% drop.

During the 2013-2014 school year, Thomas McKean High School was listed[2] as having 874 students, a slight increase of 11 over the previous school year.


McKean was known to be one of the top public powerhouse men's swimming teams. They consistently finished in the top three for States. Here are some of the team's accomplishments.[3]

Year Men's swimming season accomplishment
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • State Runner-Up
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • Delaware State Champions
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • State Runner-Up
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • State Runner-Up
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • State Runner-Up
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • State Runner-Up
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions
  • State Runner-Up
  • Blue Hen Conference Champions

Points of pride[edit]


  1. ^ Retrieved January 25, 2007.  Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-06-30. Retrieved 2012-10-19. 
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2005-02-13. Retrieved 2007-01-25. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°45′27″N 75°40′00″W / 39.7574°N 75.6668°W / 39.7574; -75.6668