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|Charlotte High School|
Aerial image of Charlotte High School
|1250 Cooper Street|
Punta Gorda, Florida
|Type||Free public secondary|
|Motto||Motto: Where tradition leads to the future.|
|Number of students||1,928 (2014-15)|
|Campus size||325,000 square feet (30,200 m2)|
|Color(s)||Blue and gold|
Charlotte High School
|Architectural style||Masonry Vernacular with Neo-Classical elements|
|MPS||Punta Gorda MPS|
|NRHP reference #||90001796|
|Added to NRHP||December 12, 1990|
Charlotte High School is a historic public high school in Punta Gorda, Florida, United States serving ninth through twelfth grade students. The school is part of the Charlotte County Public Schools district, with admission based primarily on the locations of students' homes. Established in 1926, Charlotte High is located at 1250 Cooper Street. The school carries the slogan of "Charlotte County's First and Finest" since it remained the only high school in Charlotte County, Florida for many years until its top rival schools, Port Charlotte High School and Lemon Bay High School, respectively, were built. With 1,977 students, Charlotte High School is the second largest high school in Charlotte County by student population. On December 12, 1990, its main three-story building was added to the United States' National Register of Historic Places. The second phase of the school's rebuild opened in August 2009, housing all 9th and 10th graders in their academies. In January 2010, the 11th and 12th grade students moved into their academy in the existing renovated 2-story building. In August 2010, the remaining elective classes found their home on the fully complete Charlotte High School campus.
Punta Gorda Grammar and High School had an enrollment of 150 students when it opened in 1928. Construction of a new school on Taylor Street began in 1911 due to overcrowding issues. However, by 1926, after the construction of the first bridge to cross Charlotte Harbor, busing increased Punta Gorda's enrollment to 1,000, which in turn led to the construction of Charlotte High School.
Hurricane Charley hit the Punta Gorda area at the beginning of the school year on August 13, 2004 as a Category 4 hurricane, causing major damage to the school. After seventeen days of hiatus, the students attended Port Charlotte High School during the 12:45 - 6 p.m. afternoon shift for most of the 2004-2005 school year. Afterward, students were moved back on campus to portable classrooms. Charlotte High made up one of six schools in the county destroyed or heavily damaged; however, Champ's Cafe (the cafeteria), one of the gyms and the auditorium, the Charlotte Performing Arts Center, remained intact.
Despite its sustaining severe damage, it was decided to try to save the three-story main building, a historic landmark. The plan incorporated this building to have its entire interior to be redone, but its facade will remain and the rest of the campus will be built around its neoclassical style. A ceremony took place in late May 2007 for the groundbreaking of the aforementioned building and the new facility that will group up to 1,800 students by class and provide a courtyard inside the linked structures. Harvard Jolly is the architectural firm working on the project.
The History Channel's inaugural Save Our History Grant was awarded in 2005 to the Charlotte County Historical Society, in partnership with high school students from Charlotte High School and Port Charlotte High School. Putting aside academic and athletic rivalry, the students collaborated to preserve their community's experience through oral history.
Charlotte High School has a Student Government Association, Interact Club, Key Club, National Honor Society, Scholars' Club, SAPS Club, School Spirit Club (known as the "Blue Crew"), Bowling Club, Future Educators of America, Future Farmers of America, Letterman's Club, Mock Trial Team, School Newspaper, Student Fitness Club, Academic Team, Art Club, DCT Club, Foreign Language Club, Forum Club, Hospitality Club, Spirit Shop, Model United Nations, Mu Alpha Theta Club, NJROTC Unit, Drama Club, USAD Club, TNN (TV production), Yearbook Club, Marching band, and Chorus. The school also has a Cheerleading Team (varsity, junior varsity), Cross Country Team (boys and girls separated), Football team (varsity and junior varsity), golf team (boys and girls separated), swimming/diving team, basketball team (varsity, junior varsity; boys and girls separated), soccer team (varsity; boys and girls separated), weightlifting team (boys and girls separated), wrestling team (varsity and junior varsity), baseball team (varsity and junior varsity), softball team (varsity and junior varsity), tennis team (boys and girls separated), and track team (boys and girls separated).
The school's curriculum is greatly based on the Sunshine State Standards. CHS received an "A" rating from the Florida Department of Education for the 2009-2010 school year. The school received a "D" rating from the Florida Department of Education for the 2003-2004 and 2008-2009 school years. The school has received ratings ranging from "A" to "D" from 1999 to the present. This rating is based on the school's overall performance on the FCAT.
In Charlotte County, where 6 of 21 schools were destroyed or heavily damaged, students were forced to attend the remaining safe schools in shifts. Some started as early as 6 a.m.: others ended as late as 7:10 p.m.
Media related to Charlotte High School (Punta Gorda, Florida) at Wikimedia Commons