The History of Central High School
Central High School of St. Joseph, MO — accredited since 1901 — is unique, in that it is the second oldest high school west of the Mississippi River.Three students started classes in 1863, and the enrollment grew to almost 2,400 in the 1970's. Today, the population fluctuates around 1,700 students and the majority of these students reside in the eastern part of the city. As the population of the city grew farther north and west, it became necessary to provide busing, and approximately 40 percent of the students use this service.During the period of 1866-1868, the St. Joseph Board of Education opened two new schools, one of which was located at 10th and Edmond Streets. Although this school was designated "The High School," three of the four rooms was used for grammar school. This school was the origin of the present Central High School.On May 8, 1895, the cornerstone of the St. Joseph High School at 13th and Olive Streets was laid, and the new high school building was occupied on May 6, 1896. In 1906, Central became a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools. The original "High School" was re-named Central High School in 1910.In 1932, a new Central High School was erected at 26th and Edmond Streets. Because of the rapidly increasing student population, Central was expanded in 1961, with a 24-room addition, now called the Sophomore Annex. By 1967, there again was need for more room. In 1968, the Freshman Annex, a 25-room addition, was completed.Today, Central is one of the outstanding high schools in Missouri. The diversity of its exceptional extracurricular programs mirrors the diversity of the community it serves. Under one roof, the faculty teaches a diverse course list, including Communication Arts, Science, Mathematics, Social Studies, Foreign Languages, Family and Consumer Sciences, Physical Education, and Fine Arts. Superior athletic programs are found in the same halls as academic courses. The depth and breadth of the curriculum attempts to provide each student with an education which is the most useful to that student, whether he becomes an auto mechanic or college professor.Central High School has a proud tradition and history and will continue its academic leadership and service to the students and to the community.
Salute to Central Flag
I furthermore pledge allegiance to the flag of Central High,
my school, whose ideals and traditions are worthy of all.