History of Southside High School
Southside High School, now in its 50th year, opened in the fall of 1963 under the direction of Victor E. Stewart who remained as principal of Southside for 19 years until his retirement at the end of the 1981-82 school year. Southside opened with 971 students in grades 7-10 and a staff of 37 teachers, 3 administrators, 1 counselor, 4 secretaries, 4 custodians, and 4 cafeteria workers.
In 1982-83 Wayne Haver became the second principal of Southside and is now in his 31st year. In the 2012-13 school year the enrollment in grades 10-12 was 1573 students, with 583 sophomores, 501 juniors, and 489 seniors. Southside presently has a staff of 105 teachers, 4 administrators, 4 counselors, 2 librarians, 1 nurse, 8 secretaries, 11 paraprofessionals, 14 custodians, and 11 cafeteria workers, for a total of 160 staff members.
The original building of 44 classrooms was added to in 1968 with a nine room wing, in 1973 with a 12 room wing, in 1977 with a 600 seat auditorium, in 1978 with an all-weather track, in 1981 with a physical education facility, in 1988 with a new stadium, in 1992 with a 10 room business wing and a cafeteria addition. An athletic addition that includes a weight room, dressing room, training area, and office space was completed in July 1997, and a new 12 classroom science addition and library and office expansion was completed for the 1998-99 school year. A fine arts complex was completed in August 2000 that added new band and orchestra, choral, drama, and counseling facilities. An activities center was completed in June 2008. In 2011, all the windows in the building were replaced with energy efficient windows, the front of the campus was landscaped, and both parking lots were resurfaced and landscaped. Also in 2011, artificial turf was installed on the football field. With all the additions and interior renovations, there are 103 teaching stations.
The first graduating class was the Class of 1966 with 282 graduates. In the Class of 2012 there were 433 graduates. The Class of 1978 was the largest graduating class with 503 graduates. Southside had its 10,000th graduate in the Class of 1991 and its 15,000th graduate in the Class of 2003.
Southside was recognized as a " School of Excellence" by the U.S. Department of Education in May, 2000, for the third time. In 1982-83 Southside received its first " School of Excellence" recognition. In 1986-87, the first year any previously selected school was eligible to be renominated, Southside was one of only four schools nationally to be selected to repeat as a " School of Excellence." Southside now proudly flies three flags for "Excellence in Education" presented by Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Bush, and Bill Clinton at ceremonies held in Washington, D.C. Southside has also been named as one of "America's Top Schools" by Newsweek magazine for eight consecutive years.