History of East
THE FOUR INSCRIPTIONS
The cornerstone of what would become East Senior High School was laid in 1926 in a beautiful setting of white birch and spruce, located at the corner of Hawthorne Road and Fourth Street. After fifteen months of construction, the City of Duluth proudly opened the doors to the school on Wednesday September 14, 1927, to East's first 950 students. Overlooking Lake Superior, East quickly gained national attention when it was called "one of the most beautiful and delightfully situated schools in the Northwest" by the Chicago Tribune.
Life at East quickly settled into the routine of a modern public school. Traditions and reputations were soon established with students choosing the school mascot as The Greyhound and our school colors of red and grey. The tenth anniversary of the school saw the most popular school organization, The Bird House Club (a branch of the Junior Izaac Walton League) building "attractive, scientifically designed homes for our feathered friends." Those times were soon forgotten as the forties arrived and students organized fat and scrap drives and the War Stamp Savings Club became East's most popular organization.
In 1950, in response to a growing student population in Duluth, East Junior High became East Senior High with the first graduating class receiving their diplomas in the spring of 1951. Over the years, East High has been a six year school, a four year school, a three year school, and is currently a four year high school serving the eastern end of the City of Duluth. The student population of the school has ranged from a low of 950 students in the 1920s to a high of over 1700 students in the 1970s. The current population is approximately 1470 students.
Strong community support over the years has provided East with the facilities it has needed to provide a world-class education to its students. The first major remodeling project to the school took place in the early 1950's, followed by major renovation projects in the early 1970's and late 1980's. With a concerned, caring staff of professionals, upgraded facilities, and increasing technologies, East High School is poised to enter the twenty-first century ready, willing, and able to carry out the role for which it was built. That role, to provide all children with a quality education, is spelled out clearly for all to see in one of four carved inscriptions along side the main entrance to the building:
"The good education of youth has been esteemed in wise men in all ages as the surest foundation of the happiness of both private families and commonwealth." Ben Franklin.
East High School has been accredited by the Minnesota Department of Education and evaluated by the North Central Association since its beginning as a high school. In accordance with the requirements of the association, East offers a complete curriculum with a challenging range of course offerings for everyone from the gifted student to the student with special needs. East is a full service high school, offering more programs and courses for students than any other school in the northland. East is proud of the fact that it consistently has the lowest dropout rate and the highest number of National Merit Scholars of the three public high schools in the city.
The faculty has received numerous honors for teaching excellence; many take part in national programs to improve performance in their respective fields. National test scores of Duluth's public schools show East High consistently leading the city in scores in virtually every department on a yearly basis.
It is the goal of East High to help individuals acquire knowledge, skills, and positive attitudes towards self and others that will enable them to solve problems, think creatively, continue learning, and develop potential for leading productive fulfilling lives in a complex and changing society. This has been East's mission since its earliest beginning when an inscription from the Ordinance of 1787 was carved into the front of the main entrance: "Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, school, and the means of education shall be encouraged."
AWARD WINNING ORGANIZATIONS
In 1928, East Junior High's Student Council committed this school to community service projects by beginning an annual "clean up the campus day" that continues to this year. From its earliest beginnings, East has fostered student involvement beyond the usual school day by providing the northland's largest number of extra-curricular offerings.
In 1952 East High received a charter from the National Thespian Society and has had an active theater program since the twenties, culminating in a national theater award for the program in the nineties. In 1953, East received a charter from the National Forensic League and the National Honor Society. Today, East sends students to national speech and debate competitions and the honor society has run a peer tutoring service for East students for decades. Since East High's early days it has expanded the number of extra-curricular offerings to over seventy. From the Green Club to the nationally recognized Eastside Steppers Danceline, there is something for everyone here at East. The North Central Association always mentions the outstanding extra-curricular program at East that "helps bring about a fine relationship between the community, faculty, and students."
Extra-curricular programs help develop the whole person by teaching values, team work, and commitment. Those values are clearly evident in East Student Forum's Project Joy, a program that the entire school involves itself in, raising thousands of dollars and collecting literally tons of food for the needy in the community during the holidays.
As John Ruskin stated, in the third inscription on the building: "The entire object of true foundation is to make people not merely do the right things but enjoy the right things, not merely industrious but to love industry, not merely learned but to love knowledge, not merely pure but to love purity, not merely just but to hunger and thirst justice."
In 1953, only two years into its existence as a high school, East won its first State Championship Title in Alpine Skiing. Over the decades East High ahs established itself as an athletic powerhouse in the state of Minnesota. As a member school of the Minnesota State High School League, yearly state tournament participation in several sports a year is the norm, not the exception, here at East High School. As successful as The Greyhound traditionally are, never has there been a year like 1995, when East sports teams put together this impressive record: State Tournament appearances in Boys' Swimming and Girls' Basketball; Third Place State finish in Boy's Basketball; Second Place State finish in Girls' Tennis, Boys' Cross Country, and Girls' Cross Country Skiing; and State Championships in Girls' Cross Country, Boys' Cross Country Skiing, Boys' and Girls' Alpine Skiing, and Hockey.
The Greyhounds have taken to heart the fourth inscription carved into East's main entrance:
"I believe in hard work and honest sport." Theodore Roosevelt.