Hillhouse High School

James Hillhouse High School is a four-year comprehensive public high school in New Haven, Connecticut. It serves grades 9–12.

James Hillhouse High School
480 Sherman Parkway


Coordinates41.3220°N 72.9397°W / 41.3220; -72.9397
School districtNew Haven Public Schools
PrincipalGlen Worthy
Grades9 - 12
Enrollment913[1] (2016–17)
Color(s)Blue & White
Athletics conferenceSouthern Connecticut Conference
Team nameAcademics

James Hillhouse High School is the oldest public high school in New Haven, and is part of the New Haven Public Schools.


Established in 1859[2] as New Haven High School,[3] Hillhouse High School is New Haven's oldest public high school. Originally located on Orange Street, it adopted its nickname, "The Academics," in acknowledgment of its close association with Yale University.[4]

In 1863, the school was moved to a building at Orange and Wall Streets, which was replaced in 1871 by a new school.[3]

The school is named in honor of James Hillhouse of New Haven, who represented Connecticut in the U.S. Congress in the early years of the United States' existence as a nation, serving as both a Representative and a Senator.[5]

For many years, Hillhouse served not only New Haven but also suburban towns around the city that did not have high schools of their own. Its peak enrollment was nearly 5,000 students, when the school had to conduct double sessions to accommodate the large enrollment.[6]


The school includes grades 9 through 12 and enrolls about 979 students.[7][8]

Advanced Placement Courses

The school offers a wide range of AP classes in different subjects:[9]



Social Studies




Hillhouse became involved in athletic competition as early as 1866, when some boys formed a club to play a sport that is described as having "resembled rugby and soccer." By 1884, students were participating in several sports, including modern football, which had been invented by Walter Camp of New Haven. Team competition in baseball, tennis, ice hockey, indoor polo and yacht racing also had been established around this time. Basketball was introduced around the beginning of the 20th century.[4]

Hillhouse football teams have won 17 state championships, ranking the school third in the state for football championships. The boys’ and girls’ basketball teams have a combined total 33 state championships. 24 for the boys and 9 for the girls. The boys’ and girls’ track teams also have more than 25 state championships between them. The Academics also have won state championships in baseball, swimming, ice hockey and tennis.[4]

In 1999, a grant was provided by the Connecticut Association of Schools to construct a fieldhouse for sports. Construction was finished in 2002, and it was named the New Haven Athletic Center, later to become the Floyd Little Athletic Center in 2011.[10] The 115,000-square-foot (10,700 m2) Athletic Center houses events for basketball, indoor track, and tennis. It has a capacity of 3,500 seats.[11]

In 2016, the school inaugurated its brand new Bowen field (football field) after the discovery of elevated levels of toxic PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyls) in bleacher caulking joints and exterior locker room paint in 2013 [12]

The school's official colors are blue and white and the mascot is a bulldog due to the school's early close association with Yale University. The school competes in the Hammonasset Division of the Southern Connecticut Conference and the sports offered are:



  • Boys' Basketball
  • Girls' Basketball
  • Indoor Track


  • Baseball
  • Softball
  • Golf
  • Outdoor Track

- The school is known for having one of the best Basketball teams in the state winning the state championship many years:

Boys Basketball State Championships:[13][14][15]

1924, 1926, 1932, 1937, 1945, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1952, 1955, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1969, 1970, 1978, 1984, 1986, 1990, 2006, 2007, 2013, 2016, 2017.

Girls Basketball State Championships:

1981, 1982, 1998, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2009, 2010, 2011.

- The football team plays Wilbur Cross High School every year on Thanksgiving in the Elm City Bowl.

Notable alumni

Among the school's notable alumni are:


  1. "James Hillhouse High School". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  2. Hillhouse High School website, accessed February 11, 2010
  3. Pamela McLoughlin, "Hillhouse celebrates 150th anniversary", New Haven Register, November 20, 2008. Archived February 15, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  4. James E. Hillhouse High School Athletic History Archived August 17, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, Hillhouse Athletic Hall of Fame website, accessed February 11, 2010; archived here.
  5. The 2010 New Haven Magnet School Catalog (New Haven Public Schools), page 31
  6. Hillhouse High School Sesquicentennial All-Class Reunion Banquet Saturday, May 16, The Ficklin Media Group, April 30, 2009
  7. "About James Hillhouse High School". hillhousecampus.org. Retrieved May 22, 2018.
  8. James Hillhouse Comprehensive High School, New Haven Public Schools website, accessed February 11, 2010
  9. http://hillhousecampus.org/pdf/Hillhouse%20Final%20Program%20of%20Studies%20II.pdf#page=13
  10. David Borges, "New Haven renames athletic center for hometown hero and NFL star Floyd Little", New Haven Register, September 15, 2011.
  11. , "New Haven Athletic Center". Archived November 4, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  12. https://www.nhregister.com/connecticut/article/New-Haven-s-Bowen-Field-has-long-history-of-11725038.php
  13. "CIAC Champions List" (PDF).
  14. "Hartford Courant Article".
  15. "Max Prep Playoff Brackets".
  16. Sam Rubin, Baseball in New Haven, page 59
  17. Alex Pierpaoli , Interview: Bad Chad Dawson goes back to school, Doghouse Boxing website, March 28, 2005
  18. "Yale Faculty Bars Pete Falsey". The Buffalo Commercial. Feb 19, 1913.
  19. Hillhouse Athletic Hall of Fame: Past Inductees (retrieved February 11, 2010).
  20. Durso, Joseph. "George Weiss Dies at 78; Guided Yankees and Mets". The New York Times. August 14, 1972.
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