Classen SAS

Classen School of Advanced Studies

Classen School of Advanced Studies (sometimes referred to simply as Classen SAS) is a public magnet school serving students in grades 6-12 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The Oklahoma City Public Schools program participates in the IB Diploma Programme and offers fine arts courses.

Classen SAS has been ranked among the top 100 high schools in America by the Challenge Index, which is published annually in the Washington Post and Newsweek. Its current ranking is 41, and had its highest rank on the list to date in 2006, when it was ranked 17th nationally.


Classen Junior High School opened in 1919. It was converted to a high school in 1925, becoming the third high school opened in Oklahoma City, following Central High School and Capitol Hill High School. Classen High School served students for the next sixty years, closing in 1985 due to declining enrollment in the district.

In 1994, the Classen School of Advanced Studies opened with students in grades 6-10. Its first graduating class was graduated in 1997.


Students joining the school must choose a "major": Students wishing to earn an IB Diploma become IB majors, while students studying fine arts must choose a specific field of study for their major; the latter are frequently simply referred to as VPA (visual and performing arts) majors. Students may choose to switch their majors at a later date, although at times this is not feasible due to the IB Program's stringent course requirements. Students may choose classes regardless of their major; for example an IB major student might attend a music class, or a VPA major might attend an honors math class. However, certain classes are required. In order to graduate, students must all meet the standard curriculum set down by the Oklahoma City Public School board, and satisfy the requirements for their particular major. In addition, even though a VPA major might take IB courses they cannot test for the IB Diploma in high school.

As the IB Program only covers grades 11-12, IB majors in grades 6-10 are considered "pre-IB" and attend honors classes to prepare them for the IB Program. All of the Classen VPA Programs have won many awards, including the Theatre Department, which has won the Oklahoma State One-Act Play Contest for five years in a row. The Classen SAS Concert and Jazz band have both won OSSAA superior honors as well.

Classen also has two major award-winning teachers, Mr. Michael Payne and Ms. Janet Kingsolver. Payne teaches drama classes while Kingsolver teaches 7th grade science. In the 2008-2009 school year, Kingsolver will be switching schools.

Available majors

  • Dance
  • Dramatic Arts/Technical Theater
  • Guitar
  • IB Program
  • Instrumental Music
  • Piano
  • Strings
  • Two-dimensional Visual Arts (although the school offers three-dimensional art an elective)
  • Vocal Music
  • Band

Extracurricular activities

Classen SAS fields teams in Oklahoma Secondary School Activities Association-sanctioned competition in basketball, cross country, soccer, tennis and volleyball. Football and track are offered cooperatively with U. S. Grant High School; baseball, with Northeast Academy for Health Sciences and Engineering.

Clubs and organizations at the school include Ambassador Corp, Asian Club, Builders Club, Cheerleaders, French Club, German American Partnership Program (GAPP), German Club, Key Club, Latino Club, Mediterranean Club, Mu Alpha Theta, National Art Honor Society, National Honor Society, Native American Club, Orchestra, POM, Drumline, Math Counts, Spanish Club, Student Council, Theatre, Visual Arts Club and Young Astronauts and UFO.

Notable alumni

Classen High School

  • Admiral William J. Crowe, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, 1985–1989.
  • Claude Weaver III, World War II ace
  • Henry Iba- prolific Former basketball coach, and player at Classen SAS and Oklahoma State University,
  • Louis Fowler , film critic and award-winning host of DAMAGED Hearing.


External links

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