School History

Chronology

Old Salem High School

1890 – East School, 12th and Center (now a Safeway store) added grade 9.

1904 – Bond issue for a high school, voted 279 to 205. Cost $70,000.

1906 – January 1, new building dedicated, High and Marion Streets, (present site of Meier and Frank Co.)

1906 – June, first class graduated (20). Additions were made during the next few years. A wing on the east side was added, with a new gymnasium on the second floor.

1937 – New high school built at 14th and “D” Street. A “P.W.A.” project, approximate cost of one million dollars. Enrollment – 1,618. The class of 1937 used the new auditorium for the graduation exercises. For some years prior to this time, the exercises were held at the Elsinore Theatre. The building was opened and dedicated in the fall of 1937. The original auditorium plans called for music and special rooms at the north and south sides, with folding doors to open them to add seating in the auditorium. Due to lack of funds, these were deleted in the final plans, as well as a separate boiler room. Thus the boilers were placed under the stage. This late change accounts for the peculiar location of the few seats at each side on the main floor of the auditorium. One small faculty room was provided in the original plans, across from room 210- no the student center. The faculty rooms in the north end, first and second floor, provided storage for custodial supplies.

1948 – Two outside gyms and a heating plant were built for $243,000. These gyms have no spectator areas as the plans had to pass wartime restrictions. They had to be classified as classroom space, not gymnasiums. Vocal music started in Room 217. When boilers were moved out, vocal music conducted in the area known as the lower cafeteria. Band was housed in the basement room of the gym, same level as dressing room, team dressing room area.

1954 – South Salem High School opened. Approximate enrollments: South 1,100, and North – 1,200. For two or three years, Parrish Middle School used the north wing, first floor, for 7th grade block classes.

1957 – Music and Little Theatre building in 1957 – cost $100,000.

1963 – North High went on a double shift for two years. Enrollment was 2,350 the first year and 2,500 the second year. Juniors and seniors attended a.m., and sophomores p.m. Graduation exercises begin being held at the Salem Armory.

1965 – McNary High opened. Enrollment at North High was 1,675.

1972 – Sprague High opened. North High relieved by shift of Four Corners to South High. West Salem moved from McNary to South High.

1976 – Foods room is remodeled.

1977 – Auditorium balcony is remodeled.

1978 – A $1.7 million Federal Grant is used to expand the gym including new shower plumbing, gym divider, bleachers and lobby.

1979 – McKay High opens.

1980 – We revamped three science classrooms and the adjoining corridor for $130,000.

1983 – Electronics and Japanese programs added.

1984 – New football complex is dedicated. Tennis courts added. City of Salem helped with funding. Barrick renovated.

1985 – Remove post from gym, completed in January,1986.

1986 – North’s cafeteria and music areas are re-designed and a “commons” is built to tie the two areas to the building plan.

1988 – Football concession, restroom facility dedication.

1992 – Auditorium renovated, weight room facility.

1993 – Offices remodeled, Science rooms remodeled and two new labs added, locker room renovated, press box completed, 400 building, child care (old auto shop) added, English rooms (old boardroom), Auditorium painted, restrooms.

1996 – Football grandstand covered/crows nest added.

2001 – New West Wing is opened in September

2002 – Library remodeled, Wrestling room, activities, and multi-purpose rooms added (This was the old music facility).

2004 – August, Environmental Learning Center completed. September, Grand opening.

For Further Information:
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