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Santa Maria High School (SMHS) is a public comprehensive high school in Santa Maria, California, United States. Located in the heart of the city, Santa Maria High School is the oldest school in the Santa Maria Valley and is part of the oldest high school district in California. The Santa Maria Joint Union High School District was founded on June 6, 1893.

Santa Maria High School
901 S. Broadway

Santa Maria, California


United States
Coordinates34°56′21″N 120°26′23″W / 34.93907°N 120.439682°W / 34.93907; -120.439682Coordinates: 34°56′21″N 120°26′23″W / 34.93907°N 120.439682°W / 34.93907; -120.439682
School districtSanta Maria Joint Union High School District
PrincipalJoe Domingues
Teaching staff450
Enrollment2,591 (2016-17)[1]
Student to teacher ratio30:1 teacher to student ratio
LanguageEnglish, Spanish
Campus size33.33 acres (13.49 ha)
Color(s)Red and white         
Athletics conferenceCIF Central Section
Central Coast Athletic Conference
MascotSammy the Saint
Team nameSaints
NewspaperThe Breeze

In 1996, Santa Maria High was recognized as a California Distinguished School.


Built originally on the corner of Broadway and Morrison in 1892, the original school house sat on what is now the Ethel Pope Auditorium. In 1920, the present day school was built. The administration building and Ethel Pope Auditorium were connected and featured a bell tower. However, due to strict earthquake codes enforced after the 1971 Sylmar earthquake, portions of the school was condemned and demolished. The only original structures that remain are the Administration offices, the Auditorium, and the Choir, Science, Journalism, and English hall.

One former SMHS faculty member of note is Dean of Girls Ethel Pope. The teacher started the school newspaper, The Breeze, which first published in 1924 and is still active today.

In 2007, Santa Maria High School became a closed campus, meaning that students are not allowed outside of school grounds for lunch. The only exception to this rule is for seniors in good academic and financial standing with the school; i.e., those with passing grades and no outstanding fee obligations. The school's new cafeteria now serves meals and is a gathering place for students at lunch.

Santa Maria High School has remodeled and added on sections in recent years including a new library, pool, health center, and cafeteria. Dave Boyd Field has also been renovated with a new synthetic turf and track, home stands and press box. The new stadium has been dedicated to longtime athletic director Ralph Baldiviez.

On May 28, 2016, presidential candidate Bernie Sanders held a campaign rally on campus at Dave Boyd Field.[2]


Santa Maria High School athletic teams are nicknamed the Saints, and its mascot is Sammy the Saint. Since 2018, the school has competed in the Central Coast Athletic Conference, a conference affiliated with the CIF Central Section. Previously, SMHS was a long-time member of the CIF Southern Section (CIF-SS) and the Los Padres League.

Santa Maria has earned CIF-SS championships in football, boys' and girls' basketball, boys' water polo (1991), boys soccer (2005 Division IV), and boys baseball (2017 Division VI).[3]


Notable alumniEdit


  1. ^ "Santa Maria High". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved January 24, 2019.
  2. ^ Kim, Gina. "Over 7,500 'feel the Bern' as presidential candidate Sanders stops in Santa Maria". Retrieved June 20, 2017.
  3. ^ Opina, Derek. "Santa Maria High wins 2017 CIF division six baseball championship". KSBY. Retrieved June 20, 2017. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  4. ^ "Newsroom". Retrieved June 20, 2017.
  5. ^ "ABEL MALDONADO'S VOTING RECORDS". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved December 27, 2012.
  6. ^ "OBITUARY: ADM. OWEN W. SILER". US Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved December 27, 2012.

External linksEdit