South Side High School (Rockville Centre, New York)

South Side High School (Rockville Centre, New York)

South Side High School is the only public high school in the town of Rockville Centre, New York. South Side serves grades 9 through 12 and boasts a variety of academic, extra-curricular and athletic programs, including the International Baccalaureate (IB) Curriculum in junior and senior years. School district boundaries can be found in Rockville Centre and South Hempstead. Once again, this year at #32, South Side is ranked in the top 100 high schools in the nation by Newsweek's [ The Top of the Class: The complete list of the 1,200 top U.S. schools] .

The School

The primary address for South Side is 140 Shepherd Street, Rockville Centre, New York 11570. Located further south in Rockville Centre is the "Greenhouse". Established in the 1970s, the purpose of this off-site school is to provide a different approach to teaching students with academic or personal troubles as well as different scheduling and academic programs. The main building has two floors. The school is currently being run by Carol Burris. She has run the school for a number of years, and has taken control ever since.

Red and Blue

Every year since 1916, South Side High School holds an annual Red and Blue meet. Red and Blue started because in the early 1900s there were no sports for girls, so Red and Blue was the only way girls could show off there athletic talents, and now Red and Blue is a chance to bring the school together and show school spirit. Girls from all grades(9-12), are broken up into two teams, a red team and a blue team, and compete against each other for six weeks, The meet is usually held around St. Patrick's day, and consists of, skit, dance (aerobics, jazz a, jazz b, disco and tap), tumbling, songs(friendship march and fight), emblem, poster review(five posters representing each dance), costumes, prop, relays(every member of each team is on one relay, the relays consist of volleyball, hockey, fireman, tug-of-war, superstar, concentration scooter and basketball), attendance, spirit, and meet decorum. Every year there are two senior captains for each team, which are voted upon by the senior and junior classes only. Once the captains are selected, 8 senior boys are voted, four for each team (two boys help build the teams prop, and two boys act in the teams skit.) Team meetings are held everyday after school usually lasting an hour. Every Wednesday is friendship day (when you dress up in the other team's color) and every Friday is fight day (where you dress up in your own team's color), these days are were both teams get most of there spirit points. There have only been two ties in all 92 years of Red and Blue (1984 and 2008).There is also a white night where all the girls dress up in white and sing.

School History

The school's name reflects its status as Long Island's first high school on Long Island's south shore, east of Jamaica, retaining that name as most of Long Island's incorporated villages have established high schools named for their village.

The Shepherd Street address is the third location for the school, its first site (1892-1923) on College Place now the Municipal Building of Rockville Centre, and its second site (1924-1954) on Hillside Avenue now South Side Middle School. The school has been 9-12 since 1986, having previously been a 10-12 institution with the freshman attending what was then South Side Junior High School along with the seventh- and eighth-graders. The switch occurred as the district's sixth-graders moved to the Junior High, with that institution becoming the Middle School.

The most prominent architectural characteristic of the current building is the colonnade adorning the entrance on the west side of the building. This trademark gives its name to the school's annual yearbook, "The Colonnade", but is unusual in that it's not associated with either of the school's grand entrances to the north and the south, which face the parking lots and athletic fields.


South Side High School has a rich history of athletics dating back to the 1930s, yet only three teams (Boys Lacrosse, Girls Volleyball, and Girls Soccer) have won state championships. By far the most successful team is the Lady Cyclones Soccer Team. In the past 20 years, the Lady Cyclones have won 15 State Championships including most recently in 2007. At the end of the 2007 season, the varsity girls soccer team was ranked #1 in the nation.

Notable Alumni

The following notable people graduated from South Side High School:
*Dave Attell, comedian, actor, 1982
*Whittaker Chambers, writer, editor, Communist party member, and spy for the Soviet Union who defected and became an outspoken opponent of communism, 1919
*Kevin Connors, sportscaster, 1993
*Ted Demme, film producer, director 1981
*Martin Feldstein, economist, economic adviser to President Ronald Reagan, 1957
*Doris Kearns Goodwin, American historian, author, 1960
*Mel Gussow (1933-2005), theatre critic. [Gussow, Mel. [ "AT LUNCH WITH: Doris Kearns Goodwin; Foundations of a Lifetime, Found in the Box Scores"] , "The New York Times", November 12, 1997. Accessed December 12, 2007. "In common with Ms. Goodwin, I grew up in Rockville Centre. Her older sister, Jeanne, was a classmate of mine at South Side High School."]
*Dean Kamen, inventor, entrepreneur, 1969. [Marshall, Angela. [ "Inventor wins national honor: Villager recognized for contributions to science"] , "Rockville Centre Herald", April 10, 2003. "After graduating from South Side High School, Kamen went to Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts for five years, but left without earning a degree."]
*Dean Skelos, New York State senator, deputy majority leader of the NYS Senate 1969
*Howard Stern, radio personality, 1972
*Leslie G. Landau, California Superior Court Judge, 1976
*Susan Fromberg Schaeffer, novelist ("Anya," "The Madness of a Seduced Woman," etc.,) 1957


Leslie G. Landau -- California Superior Court Judge

External links

* [ The South Side boys varsity lacrosse team playing Cold Spring Harbor in Manhasset on 3-31-07]
* [ South Side vs Garden City boys varsity baseball on 4-21-07]
* [ Rockville Centre School District]
* [ South Side High School]

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