Pacific Christian on the Hill


Pacific Christian on the Hill

Pacific Christian on the Hill was a small private college preparatory school located in the Hermon area of Los Angeles.

Origins

Pacific Christian on the Hill (PCH), originally Pacific Christian High School, was founded in 1965, but its roots go back to 1904 with the formation of Los Angeles Free Methodist Seminary (later Los Angeles Pacific College) by the Free Methodist Church. When the college was divested by the church and merged with another college [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azusa_Pacific_University#History] , some property was left for the development of a high school under the guidance of an independent, interdenominational board of directors. A private college preparatory high school was created for grades 9-12.

chool description

The school provided a liberal arts education with a strong foundation in the Christian faith. There were no religious affiliation requirements for entry and the students came from many different Protestant denominations. However, true to its origins, chapel services for the students were held every Wednesday at the local Free Methodist church (Hermon Community Church) located close by.

PCH was fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), a member of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), California Scholarship Federation (CSF) and the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) for athletics. [cite web|url=http://www.pconthehill.org/school/school.htm|author=Pacific Christian on the Hill|title=“Pacific Christian on the Hill”|accessdate=2006-05-30]

The school mascot was the panther. This was reflected in the name of the school yearbook, "Pardalis", Greek for panther.

Structures on campus (1970's-2000's):
Lingren Hall: the main building housed the class rooms, library, lab, darkroom, book storage, and lockers.
The Panther Den: housed yearbook and journalism classes, restrooms, and lunch sales.
The Office: used to be a 2 story building. Housed administration offices, teachers' lounge, computer lab, and girls' locker room.
Boy's Lockerroom: housed the lockerroom, weight room, athletic equipment storage, and general grounds storage.
The aphitheater: pictured on this page.
Observatory: as of the 1990's this was the oldest building remaining on campus.

tudent population

In addition to supporting Hermon area children, PCH reached out to enroll students from other towns in the northeastern suburbs of Los Angeles. The school was attractive to Christian parents who preferred to have their children schooled in a Christian environment. Hence, PCH was able to attract students from towns such as neighboring South Pasadena as well as towns further afield in the San Gabriel Valley such as Pasadena, San Gabriel, San Marino, Rosemead, Temple City, and Alhambra. Many of the students were graduates of Christian middle schools based in Pasadena and San Gabriel. A rival Christian high school, Maranatha High School, originally based in Arcadia and now in Pasadena, provided healthy competition for the enrollment of these students. Coincidentally, the two schools were founded in the same year, 1965.

A junior high (middle school, grades 7-8) was added in 1975.

Student population generally hovered between 175 and less than 200, from the late 70's until the school closed. The graduating class of 1986 was the largest in many years at 28 students. In the late mid/late 70's a class graduated with 13 students.

Closure

The school closed in the summer 2004 just before celebrating its 100th anniversary. While the school grounds remained shuttered, the school board and the Hermon community discussed the future of the school and its properties. [cite web|url=http://www.asnc.us/2004-archives/08-Aug/0804-info-HermonMeeting-Aug18.html|author=Arroyo Seco Neighborhood Council|title=“Hermon Local Issues Meeting Minutes, Wednesday, August 18, 2004”|accessdate=2007-01-24] Hermon Community Church retained the right of first-refusal. The school board and the church prepared to enter the courts to settle the matter. [cite web|url=http://www.fmcsc.org/default/view/85|author=A.J. Mora|title=“Letter from A.J. Mora to FMCSC”|accessdate=2007-01-29] However, an appropriate buyer, agreeable to both sides appeared and on December 7, 2006, the school board agreed to the sale of the seven-acre site to Bethesda Christian University. [cite web|url=http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Private+school+changes+hands+in+$9+million+transaction:+Pacific...-a0157098915|title=Daniel Miller, "Los Angeles Business Journal", December 18, 2006|accessdate=2007-01-24]

Since 1965 the school had only three principals:
*1965-1988 - Gerald W. Harer
*1988-1989 - Dr. Donald E. Riggs
*1989-2004 - Dr. Richard Riesen

Alma mater

Our Pacific Christian High School
This I pledge to thee
Faithful students and alumni
We will ever be
Ours a school of highest honor
Rising now anew
Hail to thee our alma mater
Loyal, strong, and true

(sung to the tune of Annie Lisle)

References


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