Fairmont High School (Ohio)

Fairmont High School (Ohio)

Kettering Fairmont High School is located in Kettering, Ohio, United States. It is the only public high school in the Kettering City School District and is home to approximately 2,500 students, making it the 9th largest high school in Ohio.


The original school was part of the Van Buren Township Schools and was opened in September 1906. The high school was located on Dorothy Lane just west of Far Hills Avenue. In 1922, the original four-room school was too small for the student population and was replaced by a larger building east of the original building on Dorothy Lane. The original four-room school house later became the first Kettering City Hall.

As Van Buren Township began to rapidly grow as a desirable Dayton, Ohio suburban location, the new school on Dorothy Lane was quickly filled to capacity. In 1929, a new, modern building was built on Far Hills Avenue at the corner of Storms Road. The 1922 building became Dorothy Lane Elementary School. The cost of the new high school on Far Hills was $300,000 and led to its being called the "folly in the country." But it had to be expanded several times to keep pace with growing enrollment. The school mascot and colors were Dragons and purple and white.

In 1954, the Village of Kettering, which occupied much of Van Buren Township, became the City of Kettering, one of the fastest growing in the area. The high school on Far Hills could no longer be expanded to house the growing student population. The Kettering Board of Education secured a large tract of land between Far Hills Avenue and Shroyer Road. A seven building campus style high school, the first of its kind in the Midwest, was opened in 1957 as a three-year high-school. The former building became Dwight L. Barnes Junior High School. Today, it is the home of the Kettering Board of Education.

Within just a few years, the student enrollment of more than 2,000 was again exceeding the capacity of the new high school. By 1963, a second campus style high school located in the eastern part of the city was opened as Fairmont East High School and the existing school was renamed Fairmont West High School. Fairmont West retained the Dragons mascot and colors, while Fairmont East adopted the Falcons mascot and the colors Columbia blue and red.

In the 1970s, the vocational facilities at Fairmont West were expanded as the Kettering Fairmont Career Tech Center. But overall enrollment began to decline in the school district. After 20 years, the Fairmont East campus was converted to a middle school and the 7 buildings at the Fairmont West campus were connected with 35 new classrooms and expansion of facilities such as the library/media center, cafeteria and gymnasium. For the first time since the 1940s, the high school was again a four-year high school.

In the fall of 1983, the consolidated school reopened as Kettering Fairmont High School, with students from both East and West joining as the Fairmont Firebirds, taking the flight of the Falcon and the fire of the Dragon. The new school colors are navy blue, silver and white. The current enrollment is about 2600.

In 1934, Fairmont Stadium was constructed behind the school as a football and track and field venue for the school team. As interest in Fairmont football grew, a donation from the Foreman family, which had four sons who had been Dragon stars, helped remodel and enlarge the facilities. In the 1990s, a track and field facility was constructed on vacant land on the campus between Far Hills and Shroyer. Fairmont participated in the Miami Valley League (MVL) and later in the Western Ohio League (WOL). They are now in the Greater Western Ohio Conference.

From 1924 to 1942, C.P. "Pop" Warner coached football, basketball, track and girl’s basketball (a few years). “Pop” was the institution. His teams won numerous championships. The 1927 yearbook quote: “Coach C.P. Warner has put Fairmont on the athletic map in Ohio”. “Pop’s” track team had won Fairmont’s first ever State Championship. Probably his greatest and fondest memory was his 1939 football team which won Fairmont’s first Miami Valley League Championship in an undefeated season. The league that year had pronounced strength with a number of outstanding teams.

In October 2005, the new $8.8 million 63,000-square-foot James S. Trent Gymnasium -- named for the veteran Kettering educator -- opened. It seats 3,400 (4,400 with folding seats on the floor) and will be used not only for the school's indoor sports teams, but for traveling sports tournaments and music acts. The arena will rank as the seventh-largest entertainment venue in Dayton. It rivals Fraze Pavilion, the outdoor amphitheater in Kettering, which has 4,388 seats. Of course, the arena's first function will be for the high school. But because residents approved a levy to pay for renovations to almost every building in the school district, the arena also has community aspects such as:
* An 8,000-square-foot exercise facility, The Kettering Fitness and Wellness Center
* A wellness/physical therapy center operated by Kettering Medical Center
* A cafe
* A reception and banquet facility

For high academic achievements, Fairmont awarded Dragon Bells. A bell tower was built on the campus in 1989 as a gift of the Class of 1989 and named the Kettering Firebird Spirit Bell. The bell is electronically operated and is the last operational bell from the original Deeds Carillon, which was upgraded to 57 bells in 1988. The bell is rung as a victory bell on important occasions.


The following are the principals who have led Fairmont High School.

*Dwight L. Barnes 1924-1927
*J. E. Prass 1927-1952
*Richard Somers 1952-1961
*Alfred Bolender 1961-1964
*Alfred Bolender 1964-1978 (West)
*John Stuckey 1978-1981 (West)
*Frank Spolrich 1981-1983 (West)
*Charles Nolan 1963-1976 (East)
*Harold Hall 1976-1983 (East)
*Harold Hall 1983-1986
*Frank Spolrich 1986-1989
*William Stager 1989-1997
*James Schoenlein 1997-2000
*Margaret "Peg" McAtee 2000-2004
*James Schoenlein 2004-present

Notable graduates, teachers and coaches


*Keith Prentice (1958), Professional actor
*Tony P. Hall (1960), Politician
*James P. Slusser, Sr. (1961), Author
*Ron Rose (1962), World Poker Champion
*Charles "Chuck" Beard (1963), Professional Dancer
*Gary Sandy (1964), Professional actor; star of 1970s CBS television comedy series WKRP in Cincinnati
*Mike Sexton(1965), World Series Of Poker Champion 1989, 2006 World Series Of Poker Tournament Of Champions Winner
*Tom Sexton(1965), Big Eight Champion & Gymnastics All-American, Univ Of Oklahoma (1968); State Champion Coach, FHS-East (1971)
*Stephen K. Hayes (1967), Actor/author/martial arts master
*Jack Jolley (1971), Mastermind and creator of Rush Limbaugh's "Dan's Bake Sale"
*Kim Richey (1975), Country/Western singer/songwriter
*Nancy Cartwright (1976), Professional actress; voice of FOX television's Bart Simpson cartoon character
*Ted Rall (1981), Political cartoonist
*Rob Dyrdek (1992), Professional skateboarder - star of MTV comedy series Rob and Big
*Sherri Saum (1993), Professional actress
*Jamie Jarosik (1994), WDTN Television Meteorologist
*Rich Jones (1997), Stand-up Comedian
*G. Nicholas Miranda (1999), Screenwriter/Author
* Benjamin Magnuson (2000), Professional actor; "Anthony" in current Broadway revival of Sweeney Todd
*Chris Rolfe (2001), All-Pro Major League Soccer Player; member of United States men's national soccer team
*Robert Klenk (2003), NCAA All-American (weight throw, hammer throw; javelin throw); 2008 Olympic Trials Qualifier (hammer)
*Carly Mathes (2005), 10-time NCAA All-American relay swimmer for the University of Tennessee, (2006-2008)
*TJ Collins (2006), Freestyle swimmer for Wright State University; swam on Horizon League Champion 400 yard relay, 2008
*Justin Galbreath (2006), Distance swimmer for West Virginia University; Big East Conference Champion (1650 yards), 2007


* Gene Seeberger (1956-1986) Music teacher and choral director
* David L. Smith (artist, 1965-1983) art teacher
* Dorothy S. Gibbs (1968-1991) Latin, French & German teacher; Junior Classical League sponsor.
* Amy Dunaway-Haney (Spanish language teacher) 2006 Disney Teacher Award
* Shane Tomashot (AP Government teacher) 2008 US Vice-Presidential nominee


* Chester A. Roush, (1948-1952) Fairmont West Dragons Coach and later Kettering Superintendent of Schools


Fairmont has a rich athletic history. Fairmont High has won 13 titles, including 8 won as Fairmont West High School.

Ohio High School Athletic Association State Championships

Fairmont/Fairmont West:
* Boys Golf – 1961, 1963* cite web|url=http://www.ohsaa.org/|title=Ohio High School Athletic Association Web site|accessdate=2006-12-31|author=OHSAA]
* Boys Baseball - 1966* cite web|url=http://www.yappi.com/baseball/StateChamps.html|title=Yappi Sports Baseball|accessdate=2007-02-12|author=Yappi]
* Boys Chess - 1980* National High School Champions
* Girls Field Hockey - 1979*, 1980*, 1982*, 1983, 1985, 1989, 1990
* Girls Volleyball - 1976*, 1978* cite web|url=http://www.ohsaa.org/|title=Ohio High School Athletic Association Web site|accessdate=2006-12-31|author=OHSAA]
* Girls Gymnastics - 1981* cite web|url=http://www.ohsaa.org/|title=Ohio High School Athletic Association Web site|accessdate=2006-12-31|author=OHSAA]
* Girls Softball - 1982** cite web|url=http://www.yappi.com/softball/StateChamps.html|title=Yappi Sports Softball|accessdate=2007-02-12|author=Yappi]
*Girls Competition Cheerleading- AmeriCheer National Champions (2006): * Titles won by Fairmont West.: ** Title won by Fairmont East.

External links

* [http://www.trentarena.com/index.html James S. Trent Arena]
* [http://ketteringfairmont.alumniclass.com/ Fairmont Alumni]
* [http://www.fairmontbands.org/ Fairmont Bands (Concert, Marching, Pep, etc.}]
* [http://www.fairmontalumniband.org/index.html Fairmont Alumni Band]
* [http://www.firebirdsoccer.com Fairmont Women's Soccer]
* [http://www.fairmontsoccer.com Fairmont Men's Soccer]

Notes and references

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