History

Old School

The cornerstone of West Side was laid in 1925. In the original plans the building was to accommodate students with classrooms, an auditorium, three gyms, laboratories, art rooms, music rooms, a shop, lecture rooms, a library, a kitchen, a serving room, cafeteria, medical room and administration offices.

The opening date was September 14th. At that time, the Principal Alan Johnson, explained to the 520 boys and 809 girls what he expected from each of them.

In 1929 it was necessary to add new wings to the building. In these are 15 classrooms, a book storage room, and physical training rooms. In 1931, a double session was inaugurated to deal with overcrowding. Although the school was originally meant to be a senior high school, accommodating only 2nd, 3rd and 4th year students, it soon became open to freshman who attended the afternoon sessions, together with some of the sophomores.

One of the first clubs to be organized was the German Club. Following in rapid succession came the Glee Club, Boys and Girls Service Club, a Dramatic Club, a Hi-Y Club and French, Italian, Spanish, and Latin Clubs. In the first orchestra there were 29 musicians, while the band had only 22. At the time there was no need of a Library Club because the walls of the library were lined with empty shelves. Now, however, 5,000 books fill these spaces.

Now, as West Side looks toward the future, new construction is planned to expand the building. The new construction, which had been put on hold for several years by State budget shortfalls, is scheduled to begin in 2013. By incorporating the old building in the design, the new West Side will embrace the future while maintaining the proud traditions of the past.

New School