Danville High School (Illinois)

Danville High School
202 E. Fairchild
Danville, Illinois, 61832
United States
Coordinates 40°08′17″N 87°37′36″W / 40.1381°N 87.6267°W / 40.1381; -87.6267
School type public secondary
Motto Service
Opened 1870
School district Danville District 118
Superintendent Mark Denman[1]
Principal Mark Neil[2]
Staff 189[3]
Grades 912
Gender coed
Enrollment 1,585[4]
Average class size 20.8[4]
Campus type urban
Color(s)      maroon
Athletics conference Big Twelve[5]
Mascot Odin[6]
Team name Vikings/Lady Vikings[5]
Average ACT scores 18.5[4]
Newspaper 'Maroon & White[7]
Yearbook 'Medley[7]

Danville High School (DHS) is a public high school located in Danville, Illinois. DHS is part of Danville District 118, which also includes two middle schools and eight elementary schools.[8]

The school is perhaps best known for three of its alumni who went on to success in acting: Gene Hackman, and the brothers Dick and Jerry Van Dyke, and one who became an important figure in popularizing early twentieth century popular music, Bobby Short.



Principals of DHS

Mark Neil, the current principal of Danville High School, is the school's 29th principal since 1870.[6]


In 2008, DHS had an average composite ACT score of 18.5, and graduated 75.3% of its senior class.[4] Danville High School has not made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) on the Prairie State Achievement Examination, which the state of Illinois uses to fulfill mandates set forth in the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[4] The school, overall, failed to meet minimum expectations in mathematics and reading, in addition to two of the three student subgroups.[4]13.7% of juniors last spring scored high enough on at least three of the four parts of the ACT to be considered “college-ready” for key freshman classes.[4]

In September 2009, the school hosted several education administrators from Taiwan who were visiting to not only see how the school functions, but to participate in a learning opportunity for the school's Global House.[9]

Student life


The school offers approximately 30 clubs and activities ranging from service oriented clubs to academic competition, to art appreciation.[10] Among the clubs which are chapters for more national organizations are Key Club, and National Honor Society.[10]

The choral music program supports a choir, show choir, and madrigal program.[11]

The instrumental music program supports two symphonic bands, a pep band (the Maroon Maniacs), percussion ensemble, jazz ensemble, madrigal brass band, and marching band (Band of Vikings).[12]

In 2004, the school staged the musical Bye Bye Birdie, which (at its 1958 Broadway premier) had starred alum Dick Van Dyke in the role of Albert Peterson. For the 2004 production, Van Dyke returned to the school, and learned one of the numbers (Put On a Happy Face) alongside the students, performing both nights of the show. Van Dyke, who joined the military before receiving his diploma, was also granted his high school diploma at a ceremony.[13][14]


DHS competes in the Big Twelve conference and is a member of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA); the organization which organizes most interscholastic high school sports and competitive activities in the state of Illinois. Teams are stylized as the Vikings (or Lady Vikings for women's teams).

The school sponsors interscholastic teams for young men and women in basketball, cross country, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis, and track & field.[15] Young men may participate in baseball, football, golf, and wrestling, while young women may compete in cheerleading and softball.[15] While not sponsored by the IHSA, the Athletic Department also sponsors a poms team (Pompettes).[15]

The following teams finished in the top four of their respective IHSA sponsored state championship tournament or meet:[16]

  • Basketball (boys): 3rd place (1970–71, 92–93); 2nd place (1935–36, 49–50)
  • Football: 2nd place (1976–77) semifinals (2009-10) semi finals(2010-2011)
  • Golf (boys): 4th place (1938–39); State Champions (1981–82)
  • Swimming & Diving (boys): 3rd place (1939–40, 40–41)
  • Tennis (boys): 4th place (1952–53, 58–59, 66–67); 3rd place (1946–47, 47–48, 2002–03); 2nd place (1951–52, 59–60); State Champions (1945–46, 53–54)
  • Track & Field (boys): 3rd place (1983–84, 89–90); State Champions (1924–25)


The school has two songs: a fight song and a cheer song. The cheer song's lyrics were borrowed from the cheer song written for Illinois Wesleyan University, substituting "Danville High" for "Wesleyan" and "maroon" for "green".[6][17]

The school claims no knowledge as to why the school colors were chosen, though they date to at least 1906.[6] The school's teams were originally stylized as the Maroons.[6] The school's teams briefly used the name Silver Streaks before adopting Vikings in 1960.[6] While the Vikings name stuck, an attempt to change the school's primary color from maroon to light blue failed to catch on.[6]

Notable alumni


  1. ^ "Jackson Building Directory - District Administration". directory. Danville District 118. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/ASC/asc_directory.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  2. ^ "Danville High School Principal". Danville High School. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/staff/principal.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  3. ^ "Danville High School Staff". directory. Danville High School. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/staff/staff.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g "Illinois School Report Card - Danville High School". Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). 2008. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/pdffiles/dhs-reportcard-2008.pdf. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  5. ^ a b c "Danville (HS)". Illinois High School Association (IHSA). 30 October 2009. http://www.ihsa.org/school/schools/0403.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f g "About Danville High School". history. Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/aboutus/about_us.htm. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  7. ^ a b "Danville High School Production Organizations". Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/activities/clubs/clubs_organizations_production.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  8. ^ "District 118 Information - District Statistics". Danville District 118. 29 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/about/about_us.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  9. ^ Herkamp, Anna (16 September 2009). "Global learning: Taiwanese educational dignitaries tour schools". The Commercial-News (Danville, IL, USA). http://www.commercial-news.com/homepage/local_story_259214521.html. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  10. ^ a b "Clubs and Organizations index". directory. Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/activities/clubs/index.htm. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  11. ^ "Danville High School Choral Music". Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/academicdiv/dhschoirlindvahl/index.htm. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  12. ^ "Danville High School Instrumental Music". Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/academicdiv/dhsbandleeb/index.htm. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  13. ^ "Danville High School Choral Music Historic Events". Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/academicdiv/dhschoirlindvahl/historic_events.html. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  14. ^ "Dick Van Dyke comes Home to Danville High School", Maroon & White 2 (2): 2–3, June, http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/aboutus/mwextrapdf/2004_june.pdf, "Choreographed by Michael Weaver and arranged by Robert Hills, the highlight of the production occurred when Mr. Van Dyke himself came out to perform “Put On a Happy Face” with the cast ... Since Dick Van Dyke left Danville High School before the end of his senior year to enter the army, Superintendent Gary Tucker, board members David Groves and Leon Parker, and DHS Registrar Nancy Van Vickle presented him with his Class of 1944 diploma." 
  15. ^ a b c "Danville High School Athletics". Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/activities/athletics/index.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  16. ^ "IHSA season summaries". Illinois High School Association (IHSA). 6 October 2009. http://www.ihsa.org/school/records/sum0403.htm. Retrieved 31 October 2009. 
  17. ^ Freese, Ralph S. (8 July 2006). "Illinois Wesleyan Cheer Song". lyrics. fightsonglyrics.com. http://www.fightsonglyrics.com/I/page_1/Illinois_Wesleyan.html. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  18. ^ Bleill, Tony (10 July 2009). "Danville's Chuck Robinson, 14, has big-league aspirations". The News-Gazzette (Champaign, IL, USA). http://www.news-gazette.com/sports/prep/story/2009/07/10/danvilles_chuck_robinson_14_has_big-league_aspirations. Retrieved 1 November 2009. "And by the time he enrolls at Danville High in August for his freshman year, he'll be carrying a reputation as one of the best up-and-coming baseball players in central Illinois ... That's high praise, considering the talent that has made Danville a home. The list includes Jason Anderson, a former Illini and major league reliever now pitching in Class AA." [dead link]
  19. ^ "Jason Anderson". the baseball cube.com. http://www.thebaseballcube.com/Players/A/Jason-Anderson-1.shtml. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  20. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Danville High School - Wall of Fame". Danville High School. 8 October 2009. http://www.danville.k12.il.us/Schools/DHS_Site/aboutus/wall_of_fame.htm. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  21. ^ "Keon Clark". biographical sketch and statistics. basketballreference.com. http://www.basketballreference.com/players/playerpage.htm?ilkid=ClarkKe01. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 


Jones, Lottie E. (1911). History of Vermilion County, Illinois. Chicago, Illinois: Pioneer Publishing Company. pp. 255,334–5. 

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