Vestavia Hills High School
Vestavia Hills High School places among the top 20% of public schools in Alabama for:
- Category Attribute
- Community Size Largest student body (number of students) (Top 1%)
- Student Attention Lowest teacher:student ratio (Top 10%)
- Vestavia Hills High School's student population of 2,036 students has grown by 7% over five school years.
- The teacher population of 142 teachers has grown by 11% over five school years.
|Awards||Blue Ribbon School (2009)|
|Grades Offered||Grades 9-12|
|Total Students||2,036 students|
|Total Classroom Teachers||142 teachers|
|Students by Grade|
- Vestavia Hills High School's student:teacher ratio of 14:1 has decreased from 15:1 over five school years.
|Definition of Terms 2016-2017 School Year Data||This School||State Level (AL)|
|Overall School Rank||#283 out of 1,264 schools|
|Math Test Scores (% Proficient)|
|Reading / Language Arts Test Scores (% Proficient)|
|Student : Teacher Ratio||14:1||18:1|
|Two or more races|
|All Ethnic Groups|
|Eligible for Free Lunch|
|Eligible for Reduced Lunch|
|School Statewide Testing||View Education Department Test Scores|
|School District Name||Vestavia Hills City School District|
- Vestavia Hills High School (VHHS), founded in 1970, is a public high school in Vestavia Hills, Alabama, a suburb of Birmingham. Part of the Vestavia Hills School System, the high school is known primarily for the success of its band, math, debate, and baseball teams.
- The creation of an independent school system was a landmark event in the history of Vestavia Hills and their quality is locally recognized as the city's greatest asset. The high school, which is noted for excellence nationally as well as on a statewide level, is also an asset to a region not recognized for committing adequate resources to primary education.
- The school mascot is the Rebel (a cartoon depiction of a "Southern gentleman" patterned after the University of Mississippi mascot). Occasional controversy about the use of the Rebel mascot has not made much impact in Vestavia Hills, which has an overwhelmingly white student body. The name "Rebels", the mascot, the Confederate battle flag(though not the school's official flag) as a rallying symbol was the subject of a school board debate in November 2000. After hearing many opinions, mostly in favor of keeping these symbols, the board took the advice of its legal counsel and made no new policy. The use of the flag, once common, is now strongly discouraged and remains a divisive issue among students.
- However, the school has renewed the issue recently by giving out free school flags at a recent pep rally. This school flag was designed over 10 years ago, but failed to garner the attention of the student body. The second attempt has proved much more successful, with students readily accepting and vaunting the flag.
- Academic Achievements: Vestavia's math team has dominated national competition for more than a decade. The team has earned 15 first-place and 2 second-place finishes in their 17 National Mu Alpha Theta Convention competitions. Most recently, Vestavia's math team won first place recognition in the national competition in Fort Collins, Colorado in July 2006. Other successes include four victories at the regional Furman University Wylie Mathematics Tournament from 1999-2004.
- The debate team, winners of seven national championships, has the distinction of being the first team in history to win both the Lincoln-Douglas Debate and the Policy Debate in the National Forensic League championships. Vestavia is also the only school to have two national champions in Lincoln-Douglas debate.
- Vestavia's "We The People Team" won the Alabama state competition and placed 4th at the National Competition in Washington, D.C. in 2006. We The People is a mock constitutional debate program, and the National Competition showcased all fifty of the state champion teams. The team was led by Amy Maddox, who led her team to a 4th place finish after competing in the We The People program for just five years.
- Compared to the vast majority of public high schools in Alabama, Vestavia sends high percentage of graduating seniors to elite out-of-state schools. Recently, Vestavia has become a de facto feeder school for Vanderbilt University, and many graduates are currently attending Ivy Leagues, such as Harvard, Yale, the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia, as well as other elites like Stanford, MIT, and Duke.
- Vestavia's newspaper, The Vedette, received the All-Alabama award for the 2005-2006 school year. The All-Alabama award, sponsored by the Alabama Scholastic Press Association is the highest award that can be given to a high school newspaper in Alabama.
- Vestavia has a long-standing tradition of a quality music department. Both the band and choir have won numerous state and regional awards, and consistently place best-in-class in competition. Vestavia's jazz program, in particular, has been notable since its founding by bandleader Ted Galloway.
- Athletic Achievements: Vestavia has also produced a legacy of athletic accomplishment. The baseball team, under late Coach Sammy Dunn, won nine state titles in the highest division of competition, including seven straight from 1994-2000 and the 1998 national championship. Dunn's 27-year record at Vestavia was 647-146. The football team won state championships in 1980 and 1998. The wrestling, soccer, golf and tennis teams have also enjoyed notable successes.
- Faculty: Nine of Vestavia Hills High School's teachers have achieved "National Board Certification" with seven more on track to be certified.
- Outstanding teaching staff include Kay Tipton, chair of the math department since 1989, who has won Cornell University's Outstanding High School Educator Award, the Golden Apple Teacher of the Year Award, and received the White House Commission of Presidential Scholars Distinguished Teacher Award three times.
- Former Debate Coach, Marilee Dukes was inducted to the National Forensics League Hall of Fame in 2004. She is also in the Tournament of Champions Coaches Hall of Fame. Dukes coached at Alabama’s Vestavia Hills High School for over twenty years and made the program one of the powerhouses of the 1990s. Her students have claimed the championships and top speaker awards at every major national tournament during her tenure, and she has coached debaters to finals at the Tournament of Champions an unprecedented seven times. She is one of ten coaches honored by having a debate round in the Barkley Forum for High Schools at Emory University named after her.
- Former Band Director Ted Galloway not only conducted performing groups of consistently high quality, but also brought many legendary jazz musicians, such as Urbie Green to the school for performances.
- Alumni: Notable alumni include: Colter Bean (1995), Major League Baseball pitcher (New York Yankees).
- Tanner Colby (1993), writer, producer "National Lampoon Radio Hour" & Belushi: A Biography.
- Josh Hancock (1996), Major League Baseball pitcher (St. Louis Cardinals).
- Chris Hammond (1984), Major League Baseball pitcher (Cincinnati Reds).
- Jo S. Kittinger, children's book author.
- Michael Papajohn (1983), actor.
- Susan Patterson, opera soprano.
- Jeanne Wilson, three-time world champion wheelchair weightlifter.
- Rebecca Moore, Miss Alabama USA 2007.
- Grant Gannon (1999) Publisher [RebelSports.net].
Nearby Public Schools
- School Location Miles Grades Students
- Birmingham Vestavia Hills Elementary Central Grades: 4-5 | 793 students
1289 Montgomery Hwy
Birmingham, AL 35216
(205)402-5300 0.8 4-5 793
- Birmingham Louis Pizitz Middle School Grades: 6-8 | 1108 students
2020 Pizitz Dr
Birmingham, AL 35216
(205)402-5350 0.9 6-8 1108
- Birmingham Vestavia Hills Elementary School West Grades: PK-3 | 788 students
1965 Merryvale Rd
Birmingham, AL 35216
(205)402-5151 1.1 PK-3 788
- Birmingham Rocky Ridge Elementary School Grades: K-5 | 578 students
2876 Old Rocky Ridge Rd
Birmingham, AL 35243
(205)439-2900 1.2 K-5 578
- Birmingham Gresham Elementary School Grades: K-5 | 403 students
2650 Gresham Drive
Birmingham, AL 35243
(205)379-3830 1.6 K-5 403
Today's students are in no more trouble than students of previous years. Vestavia parents have always been active in the schools. They especially get involved when they hear of students moving in the wrong direction. Taking action when needed brings about support that the schools, students, teachers, and parents want and need. There will always be students who misbehave and head down the wrong path. The schools do their best to help students learn to make the best choices.
- Posted by Administrator - Dr. Laurendine
Academics are down from what they were years back. Disapointed with how much trouble these students are getting into compared to surrounding schools.
- Posted by Parent - Jumpi