Grossmont High School

Grossmont High School

Ask a question about 'Grossmont High School'
Start a new discussion about 'Grossmont High School'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
Grossmont High School is the oldest high school in San Diego's east county, California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...

. Its mascot is the Foothiller, so chosen because, at the time of the school’s construction, east county was much more isolated from the rest of San Diego than it is today and was often referred to as the boondocks or the foothills. Grossmont is in the Grossmont Union High School District
Grossmont Union High School District
The Grossmont Union High School District is a public school district located in eastern San Diego County, California, and serves high school, adult school, and Regional Occupational Program students in the cities of El Cajon, La Mesa, Lemon Grove, and Santee; and the unincorporated communities of...

. The school has an approximate enrollment of 2,400 students.

Grossmont High School has been accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges
Western Association of Schools and Colleges
The Western Association of Schools and Colleges is one of six official academic bodies responsible for the accreditation of public and private universities, colleges, secondary and elementary schools in the United States and foreign institutions of American origin. The Western Association of...

 (WASC) since 1962. The current accreditation is valid through 2008.

Grossmont High School was recently recognized as being a California Distinguished School for the scholastic year of 2008-2009.


The school’s “Old Main” building was constructed in 1922 and was used for decades as a teaching space before being converted to district offices. The campus has slowly expanded over the past 80+ years to include thirteen additional permanent instructional, athletic, and administrative buildings. Notable among these is the “Old Gym” which was built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. Recent plans to demolish this gymnasium were tabled after considerable negative community response.

Grossmont is listed as being in El Cajon
El Cajon, California
-History:El Cajon is located on the Rancho El Cajon Mexican land grant made in 1845 to María Antonia Estudillo, wife of Miguel Pedrorena. In 1876 Amaziah Lord Knox , a New Englander who had recently moved to California, established a hotel there to serve the growing number of people traveling...

 but is actually right on the border of La Mesa
La Mesa, California
La Mesa is a city in San Diego County, California. The population was 57,065 at the 2010 census, up from 54,749 at the 2000 census. It was founded in 1869 and officially incorporated as a city on February 16, 1912. Its official flower is the bougainvillea....

 and El Cajon. It is located close to regional Harry Griffen Park. The majority of the student body is from the La Mesa area.

Prop H Construction on the Grossmont High School campus began summer of 2005. The corridors are in the process of being re-modeled. So far the 800,700, and 500 buildings have been re-modeled and the construction crews are going in reverse order by the building number, 800 first and 100 last. 600 will not be re-modeled as it was re-modeled in 1995, along with the Old Gym. The 400 building or the Old Main building was shut down. Whether the district will re-model this building or demolish it is yet to be decided.

Proposition U passed during the 2008 election by an overwhelming majority. Construction and renovation on the campus will continue.

Future construction

The Grossmont Union High School District plans to first renovate the newer buildings, and have rebuilt the science and Locker Room Buildings. The Science Building Project encompasses designing a two-story science classroom building on the site of the current boy's locker room, shower facilities and weight room. The design is approximately 17,033 GSF for the Science Building comprising ten (10) classrooms (3 Chemistry; 5 Biology; 2 Physics) and New Restrooms. The building is designed to the current District Standards as to performance capabilities, and per Education Code and building codes (ADA compliance, Fire Life Safety, Structural). They will then separately, construct a new 9,250 GSF Boys Locker, Showers, Weight Room. The underground utility infrastructure (wet & dry) utilities will removed, rerouted, installed (as required or requested) consistent with the underground utilities water infrastructure plan. Construct a new 9,250 GSF Boys & Girls Locker, Showers, Team Room, which replaced the existing Carl Perkins Building, demolished to make way for the new science building.


Commentary on the Founders

An early principal and superintendent who oversaw explosive development of the District following World War II was Lewis F. Smith. Other prominent faculty from the founding, and other early teachers, included Miriam Anderson (Latin); Mary Atkinson (Women’s P.E.); John Crippin and Walter Barnett (Tennis); Merle Donohue (Choral Music); Harold Hughes (Physics); Winifred King (Biology); Jack Mashin (P.E., later, The Grand Old Coach); Raymond Reed (History); Harold G. Lutz (Instrumental Music); Eva McCarthy Quicksall, Dorothy Smith, and James R. Dewey (English); Lazelle Andrew Smith and Beulah Shriver (Speech); Eugene Vinson (Foreign Languages); Ross Wallis (Art); and Hazel Eldridge (the principal's secretary).


Grossmont's athletic teams, the Foothillers, compete in the Valley League of the Grossmont Conference and the California Interscholastic Federation
California Interscholastic Federation
The California Interscholastic Federation is the governing body for high school sports in the state of California. It mirrors similar governing bodies in other states; however, it differs from some of the others in that it covers most high schools in the state of California, both public and...

 (CIF) San Diego Section.

The school fields teams in the following sports: baseball, boys basketball, girls basketball, boys cross country, girls cross country, football, boys golf, girls golf, gymnastics, boys lacrosse, girls lacrosse, boys soccer, girls soccer, softball, boys swimming & diving, girls swimming & diving, boys tennis, girls tennis, boys track & field, girls track & field, boys volleyball, girls volleyball, boys water polo, girls water polo, and wrestling.

Grossmont's varsity baseball team have captured the division II CIF title in the past 4 seasons ('05, '06, '07, '08) and ranks amongst the most competitive high schools in California.

Grossmont High School's rival is Helix High School
Helix High School
Helix High School, in La Mesa, California, is a charter high school built in 1952. It received its charter in 1998. Part of the Grossmont Union High School District, it serves a low to mid-level socioeconomic community and has a student body of approximately 2,400 pupils...

. Helix High School and Grossmont High School play for the coveted "musket
A musket is a muzzle-loaded, smooth bore long gun, fired from the shoulder. Muskets were designed for use by infantry. A soldier armed with a musket had the designation musketman or musketeer....

" trophy in football.

Performing Arts

Among programs at Grossmont High, it is imperative to include instrumental music. The Marching Band, in particular, was a model for performing groups that followed its leadership in quality of production which began under Maestro Harold G. Lutz and continued with his successors at Grossmont and well beyond it.

Theatre arts are likely to have begun with pastor-friendly amusements typical for high schools early on. It was Raymond Kniss who introduced the higher quality of Broadway initiation of shows in 1948–1950 with Arsenic and Old Lace, You Can’t Take it With You, Our Town, and George Washington Slept Here. The first foreign-origin play at Grossmont was from 1917 Ireland. This was Robert Halvorsen’s production in 1957 of J. M. Synge’s hauntingly beautiful but dark The Playboy of the Western World–in brogue and with keening, and in-the round on the Gym floor. Plays by other American authors came along in time, these including Maxwell Anderson (Bad Seed), Arthur Miller (The Crucible) and Tennessee Williams (The Glass Menagerie). Edgier productions, for the time, included The Fourposter and Inherit the Wind. An innovation introduced around 1960 seems likely to be unique for the Little Theater at Grossmont, premiere productions of three one-acts, now long resident in the Samuel French Catalog, with cast lists of debut performers and crews. These were An Overpraised Season (1959); Four Bells Means Glory! (1960); and The Salvation of Lonnie McCain (1961), by Richard S. Dunlop.

On the original campus, some distance north of the main building, a structure contained a cafeteria on its second floor. It is likely that platforms were arranged at one end of this space, perhaps with curtains fashioned in some manner. Circumstances were complicated in 1937 when a north wing was added to the main building, between it and the cafeteria structure. On the second floor, in Room 31, space identified as a Little Theater was created. This space was adequate for larger classes, speech contests, and the like, but was impossible as a functioning theater (had normal stage lighting been used there, performers would have been blinded or fried). Also in 1937, an architect’s glad idea of combining a gym floor and functioning auditorium arrived. These well intentioned horrors were not corrected for over 20 years. During the 1957–‘58 year, Dr. John T. Warburton, then principal, was able to secure funding from the District so that electrical supply to the Auditorium’s backstage was, for the first time, very good. “Patching” capabilities, for the first time, allowed remarkable flexibility, particularly in lighting, and a good deal of money was spent on acquiring new lighting apparatus. Dr. Warburton was, also, able to acquire, for other use, what had been the Band room. It was converted for theatrical use and Grossmont had, in 1958, a real, functioning Little Theater, seating perhaps 70 if managed conventionally. Fifty years later this space was scheduled for replacement by an excellently designed and equipped theater seating 200.

The oldest and best loved tradition at Grossmont High, in its history, extended from 1926 to 1988. This was its Christmas Pageant, given annually by students and faculty as a gift to the community. The Pageant began with one performance in one end of the cafeteria and eventually was offered in four performances in the Auditorium-Gymnasium, in which 1,200 guests could be seated. The program, of about one hour and 15 minutes, was free but tickets had to be secured well in advance. The last conductor of the final Christmas Pageant was also its most experienced at the podium for that treasure, Maestro James Nichols. A thorough history of the Pageant, and of Grossmont High School, is to be found at: Dunlop, R.S. (2003). Grossmont High School Christmas Pageant, a History. Red Robe Choir Alumni Association. Available on the Net for downloading from the Lakeside Historical Society, California. Available also via a simple Net search for “Grossmont High School Christmas Pageant.”


Commencement at Grossmont used to take place atop nearby Mt. Helix in an amphitheater constructed in the early part of the twentieth century for Easter sunrise services. Graduation ceremonies were later moved to San Diego State University, and then to Grossmont’s own Thomas Mullen Adams Stadium (Adams was the first American military officer killed during the Iraq occupation, and a 1993 graduate). Awards granted each year at commencement include the Circle G Award, the Boy and Girl of the Year Award, and the Norman Freeman Award.

Alma mater

"Hail to thee, dear Grossmont!
Hail blue and gold!
Thy praise, thy faith, thy honor
Shall in our lives be told.
In thee our hearts shall ever
Find inspiration's mold.
To thee our highest striving,
All hail blue and gold!"

Mission statement

"To ensure that our students achieve their academic and personal potential, Grossmont High School’s mission is to create a community that fosters academic success and personal responsibility, provides diverse opportunities, and develops students’ interests and abilities."

Notable alumni

  • William Anders
    William Anders
    William Alison Anders is a former United States Air Force officer, NASA astronaut, businessman, and engineer. He is, along with Apollo 8 crewmates Frank Borman and Jim Lovell, one of the first three persons to have left Earth orbit and traveled to the Moon .-Biography:Anders was born to Arthur...

    , astronaut, Apollo 8
    Apollo 8
    Apollo 8, the second manned mission in the American Apollo space program, was the first human spaceflight to leave Earth orbit; the first to be captured by and escape from the gravitational field of another celestial body; and the first crewed voyage to return to Earth from another celestial...

  • Gregory R. Bryant
    Gregory R. Bryant
    Gregory R. Bryant is a retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral.-Navy career:Bryant enlisted in the Navy in 1970 and was selected for the Naval Enlisted Scientific Education Program . Through NESEP, he attended the University of New Mexico earning a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering magna...

    , 1968, Rear Admiral
    Rear Admiral
    Rear admiral is a naval commissioned officer rank above that of a commodore and captain, and below that of a vice admiral. It is generally regarded as the lowest of the "admiral" ranks, which are also sometimes referred to as "flag officers" or "flag ranks"...

    , United States Navy
    United States Navy
    The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. The U.S. Navy is the largest in the world; its battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S...

  • Kevin Correia
    Kevin Correia
    Kevin John Correia is a Major League Baseball pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates.-Early life:...

    , 1998, Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball is the highest level of professional baseball in the United States and Canada, consisting of teams that play in the National League and the American League...

    In baseball, the pitcher is the player who throwsthe baseball from the pitcher's mound toward the catcher to begin each play, with the goal of retiring a batter, who attempts to either make contact with the pitched ball or draw a walk. In the numbering system used to record defensive plays, the...

    , San Diego Padres
    San Diego Padres
    The San Diego Padres are a Major League Baseball team based in San Diego, California. They play in the National League Western Division. Founded in 1969, the Padres have won the National League Pennant twice, in 1984 and 1998, losing in the World Series both times...

  • Ralph Drollinger
    Ralph Drollinger
    Ralph Kim Drollinger is an American clergyman and retired professional basketball player. He was a 7'2" and 250 lb center and played collegiately at the University of California, Los Angeles...

    , 1972, UCLA star, NBA player.
  • Jimmy LaValle, 1996, Musician, The Album Leaf
    The Album Leaf
    The Album Leaf is an American solo musical project founded in San Diego, California in 1998 by Jimmy LaValle. He is known for his use of electronics, synthesizer and Rhodes piano...

  • Geoff Geary
    Geoff Geary
    Geoffrey Michael Geary is a right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball. He is currently a reliever for the York Revolution of the Atlantic League.-Biography:...

    , 1994, Major League Baseball pitcher, Philadelphia Phillies
    Philadelphia Phillies
    The Philadelphia Phillies are a Major League Baseball team. They are the oldest continuous, one-name, one-city franchise in all of professional American sports, dating to 1883. The Phillies are a member of the Eastern Division of Major League Baseball's National League...

    , Houston Astros
    Houston Astros
    The Houston Astros are a Major League Baseball team located in Houston, Texas. They are a member of the National League Central division. The Astros are expected to join the American League West division in 2013. Since , they have played their home games at Minute Maid Park, known as Enron Field...

  • Jack Hamann, 1972, CNN
    Cable News Network is a U.S. cable news channel founded in 1980 by Ted Turner. Upon its launch, CNN was the first channel to provide 24-hour television news coverage, and the first all-news television channel in the United States...

     documentary producer and author, On American Soil
  • Andrea Lake, entrepreneur and contestant during the fifth season of the reality-TV show The Apprentice
    The Apprentice 5
    The Apprentice 5 is the fifth series of The Apprentice, with Donald Trump as the Executive Producer and Host. Applications were available online and filming occurred in the fall of 2005. Sean Yazbeck was named the winner and hired by Donald Trump as the new Apprentice during the season finale...

  • David Leisure
    David Leisure
    David Russell Leisure is an American actor best known for his role as Charley Dietz in the sitcom Empty Nest from 1988 to 1995 and fictional automotive "pitch man" Joe Isuzu in a series of North American television commercials for Isuzu from 1986 to 1990, and again from 1999 to 2001.Additional...

    , 1968, actor, Empty Nest and fictional spokesman Joe Isuzu
    Joe Isuzu
    Joe Isuzu was a fictional spokesman used in a series of television advertisements for Isuzu cars and trucks. Created by the ad agency Della Femina, Travisano, and Partners, the segments aired on American television in 1986-90, reaching their zenith in 1987 after the character was featured during...

    , is a Japanese car, commercial vehicle and heavy truck manufacturing company, headquartered in Tokyo. In 2005, Isuzu became the world's largest manufacturer of medium to heavy duty trucks. It has assembly and manufacturing plants in the Japanese city of Fujisawa, as well as in the prefectures...

  • Ellen Ochoa
    Ellen Ochoa
    Ellen Ochoa is a former astronaut and engineer, and current Deputy Director of the Johnson Space Center.-Personal life:Ellen Ochoa was born on May 10, 1958 in Los Angeles, California, but considers La Mesa, California to be her hometown...

    , 1975, astronaut
  • Grant Roberts
    Grant Roberts
    Grant William Roberts is a former pitcher in Major League Baseball. A right-handed relief pitcher, Roberts pitched for the New York Mets from to . His career was derailed by injuries and a violation of baseball's steroid policy.-Early life and career:Roberts graduated from Grossmont High School...

    , Major League Baseball pitcher, New York Mets
    New York Mets
    The New York Mets are a professional baseball team based in the borough of Queens in New York City, New York. They belong to Major League Baseball's National League East Division. One of baseball's first expansion teams, the Mets were founded in 1962 to replace New York's departed National League...

  • Brian Sipe
    Brian Sipe
    Brian Winfield Sipe is a former professional American football quarterback who played in the National Football League from 1974 to 1983 and the United States Football League from 1984 to 1985....

    , former National Football League (NFL)
    National Football League
    The National Football League is the highest level of professional American football in the United States, and is considered the top professional American football league in the world. It was formed by eleven teams in 1920 as the American Professional Football Association, with the league changing...

    Most Valuable Player
    In sports, a Most Valuable Player award is an honor typically bestowed upon the best performing player or players on a specific team, in an entire league, or for a particular contest or series of contests...

    Quarterback is a position in American and Canadian football. Quarterbacks are members of the offensive team and line up directly behind the offensive line...

    , Cleveland Browns
    Cleveland Browns
    The Cleveland Browns are a professional football team based in Cleveland, Ohio. They are currently members of the North Division of the American Football Conference in the National Football League...

     and United States Football League (USFL)
    United States Football League
    The United States Football League was an American football league which was in active operation from 1983 to 1987. It played a spring/summer schedule in its first three seasons and a traditional autumn/winter schedule was set to commence before league operations ceased.The USFL was conceived in...

     New Jersey Generals
    New Jersey Generals
    The New Jersey Generals were a franchise of the United States Football League established in 1982 to begin play in the spring and summer of 1983. The team played three seasons from 1983-85, winning 31 regular-season games and losing 25 while going 0-2 in postseason competition...

     and Jacksonville Bulls
    Jacksonville Bulls
    The Jacksonville Bulls were a professional American football team based in Jacksonville, Florida. They were members of the United States Football League during its final two seasons, 1984 and 1985...

  • Frederick W. Sturckow
    Frederick W. Sturckow
    Frederick Wilford "Rick" Sturckow is a United States Marine Corps officer and a NASA astronaut. Sturckow is a veteran of four shuttle missions. He flew STS-88 and STS-105 as a pilot and STS-117 and STS-128 as a commander. All four missions docked with the International Space Station, making...

    , 1978, astronaut
  • Jeff Van Raaphorst
    Jeff Van Raaphorst
    Jeffrey Richard Van Raaphorst is a former American football quarterback. After going to high school at Grossmont High School in La Mesa, California, Van Raaphorst attended Arizona State University. He led the Sun Devils football team to the PAC-10 championship in his senior year, where they won...

    , 1982, Arizona Sun Devils Quarterback, 1987 Rose Bowl Player Of The Game
  • William Kennedy Shearer, 1949, eminent San Diego attorney, writer and publisher of The California Statesman 1962-2007, founder of California's American Independent Party.
  • Barry Zito
    Barry Zito
    Barry Zito is a Major League Baseball left-handed pitcher for the San Francisco Giants. He previously played seven seasons with the Oakland Athletics, where he won the 2002 American League Cy Young Award and made three All-Star teams....

    , Major League Baseball pitcher, Oakland Athletics
    Oakland Athletics
    The Oakland Athletics are a Major League Baseball team based in Oakland, California. The Athletics are a member of the Western Division of Major League Baseball's American League. From to the present, the Athletics have played in the Coliseum....

    , San Francisco Giants
    San Francisco Giants
    The San Francisco Giants are a Major League Baseball team based in San Francisco, California, playing in the National League West Division....

     2002 Cy Young Award
    Cy Young Award
    The Cy Young Award is an honor given annually in baseball to the best pitchers in Major League Baseball , one each for the American League and National League . The award was first introduced in 1956 by Baseball Commissioner Ford Frick in honor of Hall of Fame pitcher Cy Young, who died in 1955...

     winner, attended Grossmont and University of San Diego High School
    University of San Diego High School
    The University of San Diego High School , also known as The University High School or "Uni", was a Catholic, co-educational, college preparatory secondary school located in San Diego, California...

  • Brant Rustich, 2003, Minor League Baseball pitcher, Brooklyn Cyclones
    Brooklyn Cyclones
    The Brooklyn Cyclones is a minor league baseball team in the Short-Season A classification New York - Penn League, affiliated with the New York Mets. The Cyclones play at MCU Park just off the Coney Island boardwalk in the New York City borough of Brooklyn....

  • Dennis Enarson
    Dennis Enarson
    Dennis Enarson is a professional BMX rider who has won Dew Tour Dirt Jumping & Park events. He currently rides for Demolition Parts, Haro Bikes, Nike 6.0, Rockstar Energy Drink, and Matador Beef Jerky...

    , 2009, Pro BMX Rider
  • Joe Musgrove, Class of 2011, taken in the 2011 MLB Draft 46th overall to the Toronto Blue Jays
    Toronto Blue Jays
    The Toronto Blue Jays are a professional baseball team located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Blue Jays are a member of the Eastern Division of Major League Baseball 's American League ....

  • Karyn Overstreet, Class of 1989, Actress. Broadway: "Les Miserables" National Tours: "Jekyll & Hyde" "Barry Manilow's Copacabana"

External links