Monday, November 7, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - High School

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2011) that invite genealogists and others to record memories and insights about their own lives for future descendants. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your memories on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.
  • Week 45. High School. Describe your middle and/or high school. Was it a large or small student body? Is the school still in existence today? How has it changed since you went there?
 I attended St. Cloud Technical High School in St. Cloud, Minnesota.  It's called Technical because at one point, there were classes available in many vocational skills, including automotive, photography, printing, aeronautics, woodworking and so forth. My class was approximately 450 in size, and as much as 496 at one point.  I graduated in 1984 somewhere in the middle of the pack. This was mostly because I wasn't serious about grades until my senior year.  When I attended, I lived about seven blocks away, and walked to and from school daily.  Not many students drove at that time, and parking for students was in the park across the road from the school.

 The building itself was first constructed in 1917.  It has since been added on to, and remodeled and such, so that now it's two buildings connected by two overhead walkways and a long extension.  Each building is three stories, with the walkways at second floor level.  Needless to say, students here get plenty of exercise going from class to class across the walkways and up and down the stairs.  Each floor of each wing is mostly separated into subject matter, for the most part. 

As I've implied, the school is still in existence, and my kids are going there.  For that reason, I've had recent opportunity to revisit the building to see the changes.  Mostly it's the same as I remember it, with a few changes including the conversion of a space for the Alumni Association, a Snack Shack for students to purchase snacks and beverages.  Many students now drive to school, and it had become such a problem for the surrounding neighborhood dealing with an excess of student parking that special permits were created and sold to be able to park on the city streets nearby, so homeowners would have some chance at parking spots.  Reducing student parking on nearby streets also cut down on vandalism and other petty crimes students were committing.

As for Junior High, I attended South Jr. High.  It is also still in existence, and one of my kids attends there presently.  It really hasn't changed much either, except one room remodeled for a computer lab, and the Upper Media Center removed for office space.  As with the high school, I've had recent opportunity to visit this building again.   The school seems smaller than when I attended, no doubt because I have grown taller since I went there.  It's a fair-sized one story, with a second floor above parts of the building.  Science is all upstairs, and Social Studies and some Math classes.  At the other end of the building, the Band, Orchestra and Choir rooms are all on the upper floor.  In between is the Gymnasium, which is two stories plus high.  This building is a twin of North Junior High on the north side of town.

This and all other articles on this blog are © copyright 2011 by Daniel G. Dillman