LearnBoost welcomes Torrance High
Torrance High School, the oldest of four high schools in the Torrance Unified School District in Torrance, California, is one of the oldest high schools in continuous use in California and a popular location for television and motion picture production. It was founded in 1917, sharing its campus with an elementary school. It is most widely known for its appearance in high-profile television shows, including Beverly Hills, 90210 and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It is the alma mater of broadcaster Paul Moyer, Medal of Honor recipient Ted Tanouye, prisoner of war in World War II Louis Zamperini, and professional golfer Angela Park. Four of the high school's buildings are listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
The school first opened as a school under the control of the Los Angeles Unified School District on September 11, 1917 as a combination high school and elementary school to accommodate the area's rapid post-war growth brought on by its petroleum industry and iron works as well as the Pacific Electric Railway. Its first commencement ceremony took place June 18, 1918, during which three female students received their diplomas. In 1947 Torrance Unified School District was formed but was not certified for a high school. During the school year of fall 1946 to summer 1947, Torrance High School became part of the Redondo Union High School District. The very first graduating high school class from TUSD was the Class of 1948. In 2009, 97% of Torrance High's student passed the CAHSEE exam.
In 2008-2009 School Year, Torrance High had an enrollment of 2,251.
Nine percent of Torrance High students are English learners,[clarification needed] and only 15% of the students have free or reduced price lunch due to the wealthy economy in the city of Torrance.
Torrance High has over 100 classrooms; a library; access to site, district, and county media resources; five computer labs; at least one computer per classroom; two gyms; and local athletic fields.
The Main Building with the 1921 L additions, the Senior Patio, original Science Building/current Home Economics Building (1921), the WPA Auditorium (1937) and the first Torrance Elementary School (1923 now referred to as the Annex) are listed on the National Register of Historic Places (1983). These were Torrance's first such listings. It received a major facelift and indoor modernization in the late 1970s and is the building most often seen on film. A scenic Spanish Revival Mexican tile fountain and patio, was added along with a L shaped wing attached to the main building in 1921 and frequently seen in Beverly Hills, 90210, has been known for decades as the "Senior Patio." The patio is traditionally off-limits to underclassmen.
The Long Beach Earthquake on March 10, 1933, left its mark on the campus. The quake destroyed the upper part of the original auditorium and caused the ground near it to sink several feet. The replacement auditorium was built (1937) as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project while the elevated administrative offices were added in 1962.The area was nicknamed the "Sunken Garden" before the current building was built.
A memorial honoring Ted T. Tanouye, THS Class of 1938 and recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, is directly across from THS. Tech Sgt Tanouye was part of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, better known as the "Go For Broke" team. This memorial was dedicated in 2004 on the 60th Anniversary of the heroic acts of Ted Tanouye during World War II.
Torrance High's unique architecture and relative proximity to Hollywood make it an ideal location for major television programs and motion pictures. Among its credits:
Torrance High has had a long successful athletic history winning many league titles in the current Pioneer League and also in the past Bay League.
As an unofficial tradition, Torrance High has been known for many of its graduates enlisting with the U.S. military, particularly the Marine Corps. Many alumni have gone on to become professional players, some before they even graduated. Deon Thompson graduated in 2006, and went on to play Basketball for UNC as a Forward. Angela Park became a professional golfer in April before her graduation in 2006, and went on to tie for second place in the LPGA US Women's Open of 2007.
Student groups are a significant part of student life, with service clubs like UNICEF and KIWIN'S, and academic groups such as Model United Nations and United States Academic Decathlon serving many interests. Cultural clubs are also available for students interested in another nationality's culture. The largest clubs at Torrance High by average attendance are CSF, Kiwins, UNICEF, Bible Club, KCC (Korean Culture Club), KFCC (Filipino Club) all averaging between 50-100 students each month.
In 2004, Torrance High instated its Schoolwide Academic Goals in an effort to raise its education standards. Comprising an acronym of the mascot's name, they outline goals of technical competency and other standards.
- Anza Elementary
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- Casimir Middle
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- Lincoln Elementary
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- J. H. Hull Middle
- Howard Wood Elementary
- Hickory Elementary
- Fern Elementary
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- Edward J. Richardson Middle
- Edison Elementary
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- Walteria Elementary
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- Torrance Elementary
- Torrance Community Day
- South High