Newport Harbor High School: Offering a Well-Rounded Experience for Kids

Part of the Newport-Mesa Unified School District, Newport Harbor High School is a public high school located in Newport Beach. The school has earned numerous awards in both academics and athletics.

The History of Newport Harbor High School

Following the Wall Street Crash of 1929, the Irvine Company sold 20 acres of land to the Newport-Mesa Unified School District for $15,000. Located at 15th and Irvine, groundbreaking for the school began on June 14, 1930 with original construction costing $410,000. By 1948, the school had expanded to include its first gym, snack bar and metal shop. Eight army barracks were also installed to be used as classrooms.

Additional improvements were made to the school in 2005 when a $282 million school bond issue was approved by local ballot. These funds allowed the school to demolish the 70,000-square-foot Robins-Loats building so it could be replaced by a 100,000-square-foot steel-framed building. The funds were also used to rebuild the landmark 100-foot bell tower, which was later demolished in 2007 because it did not meet earthquake code requirements.

Newport Harbor High School Academics

Designated a California Distinguished School and a National Blue Ribbon School, Newport Harbor High School is ranked 8 out of 10 in the state based on the Accountability Progress Report. The school offers a number of AP courses to students, including courses in science, English, history, math and art.

Newport Harbor High School began offering the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program, which is a two-year course of study for juniors and seniors, in 2010. The program is built around three core experiences. These include the theory of knowledge college-level seminar, a student-designed community service project and an extended research project and essay. International Baccalaureate (IB) Candidates also pursue college-level work in English, math, science, history, a second language and an elective. IB classes are recognized by colleges and university, with completion of these courses frequently resulting in course credit or used for college placement.

Newport Harbor High School also offers the Career Technical Education (CTE) Pathway. This multiyear program integrates core academic knowledge with technical and occupational knowledge. The program offers three different pathways: the Digital Media Arts Pathway, the Culinary Pathway and the Business Pathway.

Newport Harbor High School Athletics and Activities

Newport Harbor High School competes in the Sunset League of the California Interscholastic Federation’s Southern Section. Athletics offered at the school include baseball, basketball, cross country, field hockey, football, lacrosse, sailing, soccer softball, surf, tennis, track and field, volleyball, water polo and wrestling. Known as the Sailors but referred to as the Tars by their fans with a mascot named Tommy Tar, the school colors are blue and gray.

Every year, the Sailors football team place against their cross-town rival of Corona Del Mar High School in “The Battle of The Bay.” Newport Harbor High School has won this match 37 of the 55 times they have competed.

In addition to athletics, the school offers a number of co-curricular courses, such as band, choir and dance, for students to take for credit. Extracurricular offerings include Chess Club, Comic Book Club, Drama Club, Photography Club, Rowing Club, STEM Club and more.

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