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T. L. Hanna High School is located at 2600 Highway 81 North, outside the city limits of Anderson, South Carolina, United States. It is one of two high schools in Anderson School District 5 and has a population of nearly 1,800 students. On July 1, 2015, Shawn Tobin was appointed as principal taking the place of long time principal Shelia Hilton, who retired. In 1989, the school was named "Palmetto's Finest" by the South Carolina Department of Education. In 2000, it was named a National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education. In 2014, U.S. News & World Report named T.L. Hanna as the fifth best high school in South Carolina, and ranked it in the top 3% of high schools in the United States.[2]

T.L. Hanna High School
T. L. Hanna High School shield.jpg
T.L. Hanna shield
South Carolina

United States
Coordinates34°34′02″N 82°37′24″W / 34.5671°N 82.62329°W / 34.5671; -82.62329Coordinates: 34°34′02″N 82°37′24″W / 34.5671°N 82.62329°W / 34.5671; -82.62329
School districtAnderson School District Five
PrincipalShawn Tobin
Number of students1,846 (2016-17)[1]
School color(s)Vegas gold and white
NicknameYellow Jackets



Before T.L. Hanna High School, there was a Boys High School (located at what is now the Hanna-Westside Extension Campus) and a Girls High School. In 1951, Girl's High School changed its name to T.L. Hanna High School.[3] In 1961, the school moved to a new site on Marchbanks Avenue, the current site of McCants Middle School, and became co-ed in 1962.

Prior to 1971, T.L. Hanna was Anderson School District 5's all-white high school (Westside was the African-American school); in 1971, the district finally integrated nearly 20 years after the Supreme Court's 1954 ruling in Brown v. Board of Education. During the first year of integration, each grade's student government had two co-presidents, two co-vice presidents, etc., one white and one black.

In 1992, the school moved to its current location on Highway 81. In 1996, McDuffie High School closed as an independent vocational/non-college preparatory high school and became the Hanna-Westside Extension Campus, a change which increased and substantially diversified T.L. Hanna's student population (prior to 1996, many African-American students who were zoned for Hanna attended McDuffie, and the school's population made it state 3A instead of 4A.) It has been an International Baccalaureate school since 2010.[4]

T.L. Hanna recently expanded by adding a freshman academy, math hall, new auxiliary gym, and new sports area.

Notable alumniEdit

James "Radio" KennedyEdit

James "Radio" Kennedy was a young man with an intellectual disability who befriended T. L. Hanna Coach Harold Jones in 1964. The two became great friends and their story was made into a movie, Radio, in 2003. Cuba Gooding Jr. portrayed Kennedy in the film. A large statue of "Radio" is located on the school grounds today.[8]

MTV came to T.L. Hanna High School in September 2007 to cast for Made, a reality-show featuring the makeovers of high school students.


  1. ^ "T.L. Hanna High". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
  2. ^
  3. ^ T. L. Hanna High School - *History
  4. ^ "T. L. Hanna High School". International Baccalaureate Organization. Retrieved October 26, 2017.
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-08-05. Retrieved 2014-07-30.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Former Hanna QB Preston Jones returns to alma mater as receivers coach". July 19, 2012. Archived from the original on December 19, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014.
  8. ^ Richard Perez-Pena (2008-09-15). "The Sports Whisperer, Probing Psychic Wounds". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-09-23.