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Torrance High School
2200 W. Carson Street

Torrance, California, USA

Coordinates 33°49′45″N 118°19′16″W / 33.82925°N 118.3211661°W / 33.82925; -118.3211661Coordinates: 33°49′45″N 118°19′16″W / 33.82925°N 118.3211661°W / 33.82925; -118.3211661
Type Public
Established September 11, 1917
Principal John O'Brien
Faculty 91
Enrollment 2,257 (as of 2007)[1]
Color(s) Maroon and gray
Mascot Tartar
Information +1 310 533-4396
Statistics for 9–12 only, not 8th grade advanced course students.

Torrance High School, the oldest of four high schools in the Torrance Unified School District in Torrance, California, is one of the oldest high schools in continuous use in California and a popular location for television and motion picture production. It was founded in 1917, sharing its campus with an elementary school. It is most widely known for its appearance in high-profile television shows, including Beverly Hills 90210 and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It is the alma mater of broadcaster Paul Moyer, Medal of Honor recipient Ted Tanouye, prisoner of war in World War II Louis Zamperini, and professional golfer Angela Park.


School history

The school first opened as a school under the control of the Los Angeles Unified School District on September 11, 1917 as a combination high school and elementary school to accommodate the area's rapid post-war growth brought on by its petroleum industry and iron works as well as the Pacific Electric Railway. Its first commencement ceremony took place June 18, 1918, during which three female students received their diplomas. In 1947 Torrance Unified School District was formed but was not certified for a high school. During the school year of fall 1946 to summer 1947, Torrance High School became part of the Redondo Union High School District. The very first graduating high school class from TUSD was the Class of 1948. In 2009, 97% of Torrance High's student passed the CAHSEE exam.


In 2008-2009 School Year, Torrance High had an enrollment of 2,251.[2]

  • Caucasian - 35%
  • Asian - 32.4%
  • Hispanic - 25.2%
  • Black - 4.4%
  • Other - 3.0%

Nine percent of Torrance High students are English learners, and only 15% of the students have free or reduced price lunch due to the wealthy economy in the city of Torrance.


The distinctive façade of the front building serves as the primary filming location for many shows.

Torrance High has over 100 classrooms; a library; access to site, district, and county media resources; five computer labs; at least one computer per classroom; two gyms; and local athletic fields.

The Main Building with the 1921 L additions, the Senior Patio, original Science Building/current Home Economics Building (1921), the WPA Auditorium (1937) and the first Torrance Elementary School (1923 now referred to as the Annex) are listed on the National Register of Historic Places (1983) and was Torrance's first such listing. It received a major facelift and indoor modernization in the late 1970s and is the building most often seen on film. A scenic Spanish Revival Mexican tile fountain and patio, was added along with a L shaped wing attached to the main building in 1921 and frequently seen in Beverly Hills 90210, has been known for decades as the "Senior Patio." The patio is traditionally off-limits to underclassmen.

The Long Beach Earthquake on March 10, 1933, left its mark on the campus. The quake destroyed the upper part of the original auditorium and caused the ground near it to sink several feet. The replacement auditorium was built (1937) as a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project while the elevated administrative offices were added in 1962.The area was nicknamed the "Sunken Garden" before the current building was built.[3]

A memorial honoring Ted T. Tanouye, THS Class of 1938 and recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, is directly across from THS. Tech Sgt Tanouye was part of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, better known as the "Go For Broke" team. This memorial was dedicated in 2004 on the 60th Anniversary of the heroic acts of Ted Tanouye during World War II.


Filming history

The senior patio behind the main building

Torrance High's unique architecture and relative proximity to Hollywood make it an ideal location for major television programs and motion pictures. Among its credits:


Marching Band in the Torrance Armed Forces Day Parade

Torrance High has had a long successful athletic history winning many league titles in the current Pioneer League and also in the past Bay League.

Historic records

  • The Baseball team won over 30 league titles including over 15 CIF titles.
  • The Football team has won more than 20 league titles including over 10 CIF titles with one state title.
  • The Girls' Golf team has won many league titles including 5 consecutive CIF titles and 3 state titles.
  • The Track & Field team won over 5 league titles including 1 CIF title and 1 state title.
  • The Cross Country team won over 15 league titles including 3 CIF titles and 1 state title.
  • The Wrestling team won more than 20 league titles including over 7 CIF titles.
  • The Boys' Soccer team won over 10 league titles.
  • The Boys' Basketball team won over 10 league titles.
  • The Girls' Baseball team won many league titles including many CIF titles.
  • The Torrance High Marching Alliance was considered one of the top marching bands in the state.
  • The NJROTC has won many titles until the program was disbanded in 2008 due the infamous 2008 budget cut.

Latest achievements

  • The Football team was the Pioneer League Champions in 2007-2008 being undefeated in the League.
  • The Baseball team was the Pioneer League Champions in 2007-2008 being undefeated in the League.
  • The Boys' Volleyball team was the Pioneer League Champions in 2007-2008.
  • The Softball team was the Pioneer League Champions in 2007-2008 being undefeated in the whole season.
  • The Boys' Baseball team was the Pioneer League Champions (undefeated) and CIF Champions in 2007-2008.
  • The Marching Alliance won the 2008 SCJA State Band Championships.
  • The Girls' Golf team has won their 5th consecutive CIF Championship in 2008-2009.
  • The Girls' Golf team has won their 3rd consecutive CIF State Championship in 2008-2009.
  • The Boys' Baseball team was the Pioneer League Champions(undefeated)and CIF Runner-Up Champions in 2008-2009.

As an unofficial tradition, Torrance High has been known for many of its graduates enlisting with the U.S. military, particularly the Marine Corps. Many alumni have gone on to become professional players, some before they even graduated. Deon Thompson graduated in 2006, and went on to play Basketball for UNC as a Forward.[4] Angela Park became a professional golfer in April before her graduation in 2006,[5] and went on to tie for second place in the LPGA US Women's Open of 2007.[6]

Student groups are a significant part of student life, with service clubs like UNICEF and KIWIN'S, and academic groups such as Model United Nations and United States Academic Decathlon serving many interests. Cultural clubs are also available for students interested in another nationality's culture, the Korean Culture Club being the biggest with an attendance rate of around 200.


View of the main campus, the science building with two refurbished greenhouses on the right, band room and auditorium on the left

The school's alma mater is set to the ballad "Annie Lisle."

The school library is on the first floor, and multimedia classrooms are housed upstairs.

Torrance High offers 65,700 instructional minutes on a yearly basis and has nine minimum days for testing and/or staff development.

In 2004, Torrance High instated its Schoolwide Academic Goals in an effort to raise its education standards. Comprising an acronym of the mascot's name, they outline goals of technical competency and other standards.[7]

Notable alumni






  1. ^ "Torrance High - Torrance Unified - 1938752 - 1965060". California Public Schools - School Report. California Department of Education: Educational Demographics Unit. 2007-09-08.^HIGH^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^--TORRANCE^UNIFIE--1965060-1938752&submit1=Submit. Retrieved 2007-10-14.  
  2. ^ "Torrance High Student Body Demographics".  
  3. ^ Troppozada, Toussan R. (1989). "Earthquake Planning Scenario". California Geology. Retrieved 2007-01-23.  
  4. ^ "Deon Thompson". Scout Hoops Experts. 2007. Retrieved 2008-03-14.  
  5. ^ Beers, Joel (March 2006). "Rising Stars". Southland Golf Magazine. Retrieved 2008-03-14.  
  6. ^ Hack, Damon (2007-05-18). "Park Feels Right at Home Among Sybase Leaders". The New York Times. Retrieved 2007-06-02.  
  7. ^ S.W.A.G. at Torrance High. January 31, 2007.
  8. ^ World Sports Humanitarian Hall of Fame. Retrieved January 23, 2007.
  9. ^ MOH Citation for Ted Tanouye. Retrieved January 23, 2007.
  10. ^ "Player Bio: Dion Thompson". Carolina: Men's Basketball. CSTV Networks, Inc. and the University of North Carolina. Retrieved 2007-10-14.  

External links

Redirecting to Torrance High School


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