LearnBoost welcomes Danville High School
The school is perhaps best known for three of its alumni who went on to success in acting: Gene Hackman, and the brothers Dick and Jerry Van Dyke, and one who became an important figure in popularizing early twentieth century popular music, Bobby Short.
Mark Neil, the current principal of Danville High School, is the school's 29th principal since 1870.
In 2008, DHS had an average composite ACT score of 18.5, and graduated 75.3% of its senior class. Danville High School has not made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) on the Prairie State Achievement Examination, which the state of Illinois uses to fulfill mandates set forth in the federal No Child Left Behind Act. The school, overall, failed to meet minimum expectations in mathematics and reading, in addition to two of the three student subgroups.
The school offers a diverse curriculum that includes subjects from applied technology, humanities, language arts, math, science, social studies, and special education divisions. DHS has an Honors Program for qualified students who may choose to instead participate in one of two specialized academies - AIMS (Academy for Interest in Medical Science) and MERIT (Math, Engineering, and Information Technology)
This school also offers four different houses. They have Freshman House (for those incoming minds that need an environment just for them), ACE (for the creative minds), Global (to explore the world around them), and New Tech (for those who like to learn using real-life problem solving applications)The New Tech house also requires a smart use of technology integration across the curriculum, although the focus of the house is not computers. The New Tech house is one of two schools in the State of Illinois that is part of the New Technology Network (www.newtechfoundation.org).
In September 2009, the school hosted several education administrators from Taiwan who were visiting to not only see how the school functions, but to participate in a learning opportunity for the school's Global House.
The school offers approximately 30 clubs and activities ranging from service oriented clubs to academic competition, to art appreciation. Among the clubs which are chapters for more national organizations are Amnesty International, Key Club, and National Honor Society.
In 2004, the school staged the musical Bye Bye Birdie, which (at its 1958 Broadway premier) had starred alum Dick Van Dyke in the role of Albert Peterson. For the 2004 production, Van Dyke returned to the school, and learned one of the numbers (Put On a Happy Face) alongside the students, performing both nights of the show. Van Dyke, who joined the military before receiving his diploma, was also granted his high school diploma at a ceremony.
DHS competes in the Big Twelve conference and is a member of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA); the organization which organizes most interscholastic high school sports and competitive activities in the state of Illinois. Teams are stylized as the Vikings (or Lady Vikings for women's teams).
The school sponsors interscholastic teams for young men and women in basketball, cross country, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis, and track & field. Young men may participate in baseball, football, golf, and wrestling, while young women may compete in cheerleading and softball. While not sponsored by the IHSA, the Athletic Department also sponsors a poms team (Pompettes).
The following teams finished in the top four of their respective IHSA sponsored state championship tournament or meet:
The school has two songs: a fight song and a cheer song. The cheer song's lyrics were borrowed from the cheer song written for Illinois Wesleyan University, substituting "Danville High" for "Wesleyan" and "maroon" for "green".
The school claims no knowledge as to why the school colors were chosen, though they date to at least 1906. The school's teams were originally stylized as the Maroons. The school's teams briefly used the name Silver Streaks before adopting Vikings in 1960. While the Vikings name stuck, an attempt to change the school's primary color from maroon to light blue failed to catch on.
Maj. Kenneth D. Bailey, USMC
Bobby Short (center, at piano)
Dick Van Dyke
Jerry Van Dyke
Jones, Lottie E. (1911). History of Vermilion County, Illinois. Chicago, Illinois: Pioneer Publishing Company. pp. 255,334–5.
- Albert P Brewer High School
- Albert P Brewer Voc School
- Cotaco School
- Danville Middle School
- Danville-Neel Elementary School
- Eva School
- Falkville Elementary School
- Falkville High School
- Laceys Spring Elementary School
- Morgan Co Learning Ctr
- Ryan School
- Sparkman Elementary School
- Union Hill School
- West Morgan Elementary School
- West Morgan High School
- Priceville Elementary School
- Priceville High School
- Priceville Jr High School
- West Morgan Middle School