North High Pride

Boundary discussions stir up emotions in community

BAKERSFIELD, Calif - Kern High School District boundary discussions have stirred a lot of emotions in our community, one in particular - North High pride. 

Now students, teachers, staff and alumni are speaking up about their school's rich history, academics and character. 

"We use to say this was the best kept secret in town, but why do we keep it a secret?  We need to tell people," said Dana Ross, North High alumnus and teacher on campus for 18 years. 

So here it is: North High, the place Stars are born. 

"We have students that are in ag and honors classes.  We have students that are in band and AP classes.  We have students that are in construction and dual enrollment.  We meet the needs of the students that walks in here whether it's career readiness or college readiness," said Chris Persons, Assistant Principal of Instruction at North High. 

Students agree.  North is a place where they can learn, grow and experience things they never could have imagined. 

"This past year I worked on a solar suitcase thanks to PG&E Me the We and I was able to travel to Kenya," said Evelyn Valdez, a senior at North. 

"I actually got to go to England and Scotland because of the music program here.  They pushed me to audition and I made it into a symphony and it changed my life," said Bethany Withnell, also a senior at North. 

"It's just been truly an amazing experience and I couldn't imagine myself being anywhere else," said Lily Hansen, another senior on campus. 

Julie Jordan-Scott elected to send her son, Samuel, who has special needs, to North High. 

"I was kind of scared.  I didn't know what to expect.  I have heard good things and bad things about North High, but the only thing I've actually seen about North High are really positive things," said Julie Jordan-Scott.

Jordan-Scott said it was one of the best decisions she ever made. 

"The sense of belonging and community that is on this campus, I feel like every student is valued for being whoever he or she is," Jordan-Scott said. 

That value can be attributed to the faculty and staff on campus. 

"Teachers go into teaching for many reasons but I'm the kind of teacher that's there because I love the kids and this entire staff is that way," said Erica Zeimet, who has taught at North for 4 years. 

"People on the outside don't get to see that," said Tony Napier, North alumnus and teacher for 26 years. 

"They just think well, that's the school north of the river, but it's much more than that," said Eric Hansen, former teacher and parent of students who attend North. 

"We have a great thing going on here and it's just really enjoyable once people step foot on our campus to take them around and say hey this is North High," said Mark Balch, alumnus and Principal at North High.

Principal Balch invites anyone with concerns about North High to give him a call and schedule a tour of the campus. 


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