In the late 1940's, it became apparent that the existing high schools in the Kern High School District were not sufficient in number for the accelerated growth of greater Bakersfield.
Thus, after several years of planning, ground was broken on March 23, 1952, for the construction of North High School. As envisioned, the school was to be the most efficiently planned and most attractive high school in California…and so it is. Certainly it was a beautiful architectural departure from the traditional facilities of the only other existing high schools in Greater Bakersfield at the time, Bakersfield High School and East Bakersfield High School, and ushered in the modern campus concept.
September 8, 1953, first classes were held at North High under the principalship of Jack M. Hill, previously Principal of Shafter High School. Enrollment that first year was 625 students, freshman and sophomores, with 28 teachers and counselors.
Second year enrollment grew to 927 with 49 on the staff, and the third year enrollment swelled to 1,300 guided by a staff of 50. Today, North High’s enrollment is over 2,000 students and certificated staff over 80.
Jack Hill, the school’s first Principal who served for two years until his untimely death, was succeeded by George Williamson in mid-1955. With Williamson’s retirement in 1965, Jack Hilton, the school’s Vice Principal since it’s opening , took over as Principal. He served four years until taking a district administrative position. Mr. Harold Corrie, another Shafter High School Principal was appointed to head North High in 1969. Corrie replaced Mr. Hilton at the District Office, and North High’s new Principal beginning July 1, 1973 was Dr. Richard M. Brown formerly Vice-President of Instruction at North. C. Warner Brooks, formerly Assistant Principal at Arvin High School became the Principal of North High School in January, 1985, as Dr. Brown was asked to head a task force at the District Office. In July of 1989, William B. Bimat was appointed Principal, and Mr. Brooks was appointed Assistant Superintendent for Instruction. Mr. Bimat succumbed to cancer in December of 1994. In February, 1995 Jim Wren was named Principal. Mr. Wrenbeaman retired at the end of 1997-98 school year. Mr. Bryon Schaefer was appointed Principal in July 1998. Mr. Schaefer was our former Assistant Principal of Instruction and was once Dean of Students at North. In 2010 Mr. Schaefer was appointed Assistant Superintendent of Personnel, and Alan Paradise was appointed principal. In December of 2015 Mark Balch was appointed Principal of North High.
Success in many fields - curricular, athletic, musical, public speaking, art and drama, to mention a few, marked the first two years of the school’s history, and since then the high standards of excellence met in those early years have continued to be met in all departments. North High has graduated many community leaders and continues to do so to this day. Academically, North High School's Agriculture Program one of the finest in the state and North High students continue to excel in all other educational disciplines. NHS students can enjoy classes in a wide range of subjects, from the core curriculum to Forensics and Web Design!