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East High School (Denver)

East High School is a public high school located in the City Park neighborhood on the east side of Denver, Colorado. It is part of the Denver Public Schools system, and is one of four original high schools in Denver, the other three are North, West, and South.

East High School
Denver, CO
United States
Established 1876
School district Denver Public Schools
Principal John Youngquist
Grades 9-12
Number of students 2568 (as of 2015) [1]
Color(s) Red & White         
Athletics conference Denver Prep League
Nickname Angels
Newspaper The East High Spotlight [2]
Sports Division CHSAA 5A
East High School
Front of East High School in Denver, 05-Sep-2012.jpg
East High School
East High School (Denver) is located in Colorado
East High School (Denver)
East High School (Denver) is located in the US
East High School (Denver)
Location 1600 City Park Esplanade St.
Denver, Colorado 80206
Area 11.5 acres (4.7 ha)
Built 1924
Built by Arvid Olson Invest. & Building Co.
Architect Williamson, Tobin Hops
Architectural style Late 19th and 20th Century Revivals, Jacobethan Revival, other
NRHP reference # 06000660[1]
CSRHP # 5DV.2091
Added to NRHP July 27, 2006



East High School opened in 1875 and was the first high school in Denver.[citation needed] The first graduating class was in 1877. In 1889, it moved to 19th and Stout Street because of the need for more room. This location is now referred to as "Old East," and could accommodate 700 students.

The architect for the current facility was Denver native George Hebard Williamson, himself an 1893 graduate of "Old East" High. Williamson won national recognition for his design of the "new" East, which has a 162-foot (49 m) high clock tower[2] modeled after Independence Hall in Philadelphia.

In early 1991, the East High building was declared an official Denver Historic Landmark by the Denver Landmark Commission and the Denver City Council.

In July 2005, a music video for the song "Over My Head (Cable Car)", by The Fray was filmed in East High.

East has been repeatedly honored as one of America's top high schools. It was honored in 1957 as one of the country's top high schools and subsequently selected in 1968 as one of America's Top Ten Schools. In 2000 Newsweek recognized East as one of America's top hundred public high schools.[3] In 2008, Newsweek again recognized East in its annual list of the country's "Top High Schools".[4]

The instrumental music program is directed by local jazz saxophonist Keith Oxman.[5] The school has three jazz bands, two concert bands, and an orchestra, as well as AP Music Theory and numerous student groups. Musicians connected to the school include Javon Jackson and Curtis Fuller.

East is also known for its speech and debate program. The team is coached by Matthew Murphy as well as numerous assistants and is ranked as the 59th best program in the United States, out of over 3000 member high schools.[6] East regularly send competitors to both State and National Competitions. In 2010, the school fielded two state champions,[7] as well as a finalist at the NFL National Tournament.[8] At the 2011 NFL National Tournament, East fielded a national champion in congressional debate, and placed second in duo interpretation.

The school has an active student government, and more than 66 clubs and student organizations.[9]

On December 4, 2014, students walked off campus and staged a protest over recent incidents of police shootings of minorities. Four Denver police officers were riding their patrol bicycles to block traffic so students could march safely. A motorist had what was described as a "medical event" and struck the officers, sending all of them to the hospital, one with life-threatening injuries. The motorist was later arrested for not disclosing he had a seizure disorder, This disclosure would have barred him from driving until his disorder was stabilized.[10]


East has enjoyed notable success in several Colorado 5A sports, including the most recent State Championship for a Denver Prep League School in baseball (State Champions in 1994), basketball (State Champions in 1964, 1965, 1996, 1999, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2014, and girls' in 2010[11]), soccer (1994, 2008[12][13] and 2011), lacrosse (State Champions in 1985, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993, 1996, 1998, and 2000), tennis, rugby (state champions in 1997, 2002, 2004, 2009 and 2015[14]) and football. In 2006 the East High Angels Football team made it to the 5A playoffs for the first time in 12 years, returning again in 2007 to win their first playoff game since 1992. The 1983 girls' soccer team is the only DPS school to win a girls' state championship.

The school's boys' and girls' basketball teams are consistently ranked with the best teams in the state. In 2007, the boys' basketball team was named the top ranked team in the state by RISE Magazine and Sports Illustrated, and finished the season with another 5A state championship win, topping a season with a 22-3 record. The boys repeated their 2007 success by winning the 5A state title again in 2008 and 2014, totaling six title since 1996. The girls won their first 5A title in 2010.

Beside fielding teams sanctioned by the Colorado High School Activities Association, East's club teams include bowling, Division I High School Boys' Rugby (state champions in 1997, 2002, 2004, 2009, 2015), ultimate frisbee (2012 USA Ultimate western regional champions), table tennis, and boys' volleyball.

Boys' soccer has seen significant success in recent years. They claimed the state championship in 2009, defeating Regis High School 1-0 in overtime. Just two years later, the boys once again claimed a state title over Chaparral.

Notable alumniEdit


  1. ^ National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ 2007 Doors Open Denver Building List
  3. ^ High School History, The Hill School. The Torch Relit. Vol. 7, Issue 2. Page 11. By Parker La Casse and Hayley Price. 15 December 2011. Retrieved 2 August 2011.
  4. ^ Denver Schools, By Michelle A. Potter. Retrieved 2 August 2012.
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ Devlin, Neil H. (March 13, 2010). "East the beast of 5A girls". Denver Post. 
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ Martin, Claire (January 25, 2010). "East High rugby players tackle yoga for cross-training". Denver Post. 
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Heritage Hall Inductees". East Angel Friends and Alumni Foundation. Retrieved 5 January 2017. 
  16. ^ a b c d e f Davidson, Joanne (August 30, 2013). "East High School adds 16 to its Alumni Heritage Hall". Denver Post. 
  17. ^ a b c d e f Davidson, Joanne (October 28, 2010). "East High's Hall of Fame". Denver Post. 
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Frei, Terry (February 9, 2013). "Denver's tradition-rich East High School a grand ol' Angel". Retrieved April 30, 2016. 
  19. ^ Don Cheadle Biography on
  20. ^ "Mamie Eisenhower Biography". National First Ladies' Library. Retrieved 2011-09-01. 
  21. ^ "Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board: Who Is Christopher Hart?". Retrieved 2016-07-05. 
  22. ^ David Oliver USA Track & Field
  23. ^ Moss, Irv (May 13, 2014). "Colorado Classics: Bernie Wrightson, Olympic Champion Diver". Denver Post. 

Coordinates: 39°44′28″N 104°57′19″W / 39.741151°N 104.955214°W / 39.741151; -104.955214 (East High School)