Stanton College Preparatory School

Coordinates: 30°21′06″N 81°40′22″W / 30.351696°N 81.672837°W / 30.351696; -81.672837
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Stanton College Preparatory School
Stanton Crest
1149 W 13Th St


United States
TypePreparatory School
PrincipalNongongoma Majova-Seane
Number of students1,538 (2019-20)[1]
CampusUrban, 17 acres
Color(s)Royal blue , and white
MascotBlue Devil

Stanton College Preparatory School is a preparatory high school in Jacksonville, Florida, United States. Stanton College Preparatory School is a highly selective school that offers both the Advanced Placement and the International Baccalaureate.

The school's history dates to the 1860s, serving as the first school for Black students in the state of Florida. It was begun as an elementary school serving the African-American population under the then-segregated education system. It now serves secondary students (grades 9–12) within the Duval County Public Schools of Duval County, Florida. The school offers special curricula including Honors courses, Advanced Placement, and International Baccalaureate courses. In 2005, the Advanced Placement Report to the Nation[2] recognized Stanton College Preparatory School as the best large size high school for Advanced Placement in the world.

Stanton was called "one of the premier IB and AP public schools in the country" by Jay Mathews in his 2005 book Supertest: How the International Baccalaureate Can Strengthen Our Schools. Most Stanton students attend some form of college after graduation, whether four-year or two-year institutions, local, national, or international.[3] In 2014, the Washington Post ranked the school as the 4th most challenging high school in the Southern United States.[4]


Edwin M. Stanton, namesake of the school
Edwin M. Stanton School

Shortly after the end of the Civil War, a group of African Americans from Jacksonville organized the Education Society, and, in 1868, purchased the property on which the Old Stanton School was built. It was their intent to erect a school to be called the Florida Institute. Financial problems, however, delayed progress on the building until December of that year, when the school was built and incorporated through the aid of the Freedmen's Bureau. This wooden structure was named in honor of Edwin McMasters Stanton, President Abraham Lincoln's second Secretary of War. He was an ardent champion of human rights and an advocate of free school education for Negro boys and girls. It was the second school for black children in the state of Florida (the first, from 1866, was the predecessor of Edward Waters College).

Freedmen's Bureau ran the school. Northern white teachers were employed until the county leased the property for the purpose of opening a public school. The first building was destroyed by fire in 1882. Another building constructed the same year was also destroyed by fire on May 3, 1901, a fire that destroyed much of Jacksonville. A new school was constructed in 1902 and remained in operation until 1917.

Originally the school mascot was the Blue Devil. After the school burned and was rebuilt twice, "the Phoenix rising from ashes" was adopted as a second mascot. Today both mascots are used, with the Blue Devil used as the mascot for sports and other activities, and the Phoenix used as a symbol of the school itself, along with the most current logo, a royal blue Superman "S" symbol.

On May 23, 1914, the Circuit Court of Duval County appointed nine trustees to manage the school and its property. They were Robert B. Archibald, S. H. Hart, A. L. Lewis, J. W. Floyd, W. L. Girardeau, I. L. Purcell, B. C. Vanderhorst, J. E. Spearing, and W. H. H. Styles. Archibaid and Hart resigned and were replaced by J. M. Baker and L. H. Myers.

The deteriorating and unsafe condition of the poorly-constructed school building prompted the Board of Public Instruction, the Stanton School trustees, and interested citizens of Jacksonville to jointly agree to replace the wooden structure with a fire-proof building. In 1917 the building, which still stands at Ashley, Broad, Beaver, and Clay Streets, was completed. Stanton became the main focus for the education of black children in Duval County and surrounding areas. The Edwin M. Stanton School was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.[5]

An equally impressive record of academic expansion has accomplished the physical growth of Stanton. Beginning as an elementary school with six grades, under the administration of J. C. Waters as the first principal and D. W. Gulp who followed as principal, Stanton gradually became known throughout the state for the high educational standards which it still maintains today. The eighth grade was added under the leadership of Principal W. M. Artrell. Principal James Weldon Johnson, an alumnus, started the move toward a high school department.

The addition of the twelfth grade[when?] made Stanton a comprehensive school. Stanton continued as a school for all grades through the administrations of I. A. Blocker, G. M. Sampson, and J. N. Wilson. In 1938, with F. J. Anderson as principal, Stanton became a senior high school exclusively. J. L. Terry served as the last principal of Stanton Senior High School.

In 1953, the Stanton Senior School name was transferred to a new facility on 13th Street and was renamed New Stanton Senior High School. Charles D. Brooks was the first principal of the new school. Under his leadership, Stanton continued to foster the same traditionally high standards which befit its rich heritage, and flourished as the oldest and most important high school for blacks in Jacksonville.

Beginning in 1953, the Broad and Ashley Street facility became known as the "Old" Stanton. The building was used as a junior high school in 1953–1954. In August 1954, it was converted into the Stanton Vocational High School and functioned as a vocational training center, adjusting its curriculum to train and graduate African-American students in technical skills. At night, it became a center for the Adult and Veterans Education Program.

From 1969 to 1971, the focus of New Stanton Senior High School began to change from academic to vocational under the leadership of Principal Ben Durham, the former principal of Stanton Vocational High School. In 1971, the Old Stanton High School building was again placed under control of the trustees of Stanton and the student body was transferred to New Stanton Senior High School where the revised curriculum now provided for both the academic and the vocational interests of the students

In 1981, Stanton College Preparatory School became the Duval County School System's first magnet school. Beginning with grades 7–10, and adding one grade level each succeeding year, the first senior class of 54 students graduated in 1984. Stanton College Preparatory School now serves secondary students living within the 841 square miles (2,180 km2) of the Duval County school district and leads the Duval County Public Schools in academic achievement.[when?][6]

In March 2017, the school received international criticism for verbiage on flyers hung around campus presenting both acceptable and unacceptable attire for the school prom. Students found the use of "good girl" to praise those with attire deemed appropriate to be demeaning, and took to social media with the hashtag #scpgoodgirl. The principal quickly issued an apology.[7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14]

School programs[edit]


Stanton competes in the Gateway Conference,[15] a collaboration between most public high schools in Duval County. As of the 2022–2023 school year, Stanton's athletic director is Christopher Crider.[16] Stanton's campus has a limited number of athletic facilities due to its urban environment, but includes a football field, a rubber track, a softball field, and three hard surface tennis courts. Because Stanton doesn't have a baseball field, the baseball team practices at J. P. Small Memorial Stadium. Similarly, Stanton's cross country and track & field teams used to practice at Mallison Park before Stanton's rubber track was built. Its completion in 2019 made Stanton the last public high school in Duval County to upgrade to a rubber track. Stanton's sports include cross country, basketball, football, wrestling, weightlifting, flag football, soccer, track and field, swimming and diving, lacrosse, bowling, volleyball, tennis, baseball, softball, golf, and competitive cheerleading.

Extracurricular Activities[edit]

Stanton offers over 80 school clubs and organizations for students to join. Some of which include Multicultural Club, the widely-recognized Devil's Advocate (the school newspaper), and Quiz Bowl. Stanton's Quiz Bowl team has a reputation of being one of the best teams in the nation. In 2021, one of Stanton's teams placed 8th at the NAQT National Championship Tournament. The team also consistently wins the annual Duval County Quiz Bowl tournament.[17] Stanton also offers numerous Honor Societies including Mu Alpha Theta and Psychology National Honor Society.[18]


From 2000 to 2003, Stanton College Prep was ranked first in Newsweek magazine's list of the top 1,000 public schools in the United States, and is the only school in the nation to have been in the top 5 every year from 2000 to 2011.[19][20][21][22][23] U.S. News & World Report ranked Stanton at ninth place on its 2008 list of America's Best High Schools.[24] It has frequently ranked first in the US in the number of International Baccalaureate diplomas awarded. Stanton perennially leads the Jacksonville metropolitan area in the number of National Merit Scholarship recipients, and consistently ranks in the top three in the state. The school has been named a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence.[25] As of August 2014, Stanton is rated number 12 of the top high schools in the nation by US News[26] and number 10 by Newsweek.[27]


Notable faculty[edit]


  1. ^ "Stanton College Preparatory School". Duval County Public Schools. Retrieved February 4, 2020.
  2. ^ Advanced Placement Report to the Nation, 2005
  3. ^ Stanton College Preparatory School profile at
  4. ^ High School Challenge Washington Post 2014
  5. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  6. ^ Stanton History
  7. ^ "School apologises for 'slut-shame' prom posters about appropriate dresses". BBC Newsbeat. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  8. ^ Italiano, Eric (2017-03-29). "Stanton College Prep High School 'Good Girl' Prom Poster". Coed. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  9. ^ Vagianos, Alanna (2017-03-29). "Students Protest Sexist Flyers Depicting What 'Good Girls' Wear To Prom". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  10. ^ "This High School Is Under Fire for Its Awful Sexist Prom Dress Code Posters". Cosmopolitan. 2017-03-29. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  11. ^ "Stanton prom dress message draws sharp criticism, national attention". Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  12. ^ "Florida high school blasted for 'good girl' prom attire flyers". NY Daily News. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  13. ^ "Sexist High School Flier Showing Prom Dresses For A 'Good Girl' Sparks Outrage". Elite Daily. 2017-03-29. Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  14. ^ McDonald, Adam. "Parents outraged by Jacksonville high school's 'good girl' prom dress guidelines". Retrieved 2017-03-31.
  15. ^ "Gateway Conference Events / 2021-22 Gateway Conference Tournament Dates".
  16. ^ "School Staff Directory / School Staff Directory".
  17. ^ "NAQT | Stanton College Preparatory School | Results". Retrieved 2023-02-23.
  19. ^ Complete List of the 1,000 Top U.S. Schools (2005) compiled by Newsweek magazine.
  20. ^ Complete List of the 1,000 Top U.S. Schools (2006) compiled by Newsweek magazine
  21. ^ Complete List of the 1,000 Top U.S. Schools (2007) compiled by Newsweek magazine
  22. ^ Complete List of the 1,300 Top U.S. Schools (2008) compiled by Newsweek magazine
  23. ^ Complete List of the 1,000 Top U.S. Schools (2011)
  24. ^ U.S. News & World Report Gold Medal Schools
  25. ^[bare URL PDF]
  26. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-11-25. Retrieved 2011-06-25.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  27. ^ "2013 America's Best High Schools - Newsweek". Newsweek. Archived from the original on 2019-04-02. Retrieved 2014-08-27.
  28. ^ "Tyler Ross". IMDb.
  29. ^ "Joel Davis hired as Stanton baseball coach". Archived from the original on January 26, 2013. Retrieved November 6, 2012.

External links[edit]

30°21′06″N 81°40′22″W / 30.351696°N 81.672837°W / 30.351696; -81.672837