Fort Lauderdale High School is the oldest continuously functioning high school in Broward County, Florida.
On October 2, 1899, Fort Lauderdale
’s first school would open in what was then Dade County
. Ivy Cromartie (later to become Ivy Stranahan) welcomed nine students into a wood-framed schoolhouse located on South Andrews Avenue, south of the New River. By 1901, there were 18 students enrolled at Fort Lauderdale with only 997 enrolled in all of Dade County. It was also during 1902 that the School Board began offering transportation to students living in Hallandale
who needed to attend school; each day, students would climb aboard wagons for the ride.
By 1910, Fort Lauderdale’s population had grown enough to require the building of a new school so, the old two-room schoolhouse was moved slightly northward to make room. The “modern” two-story concrete school was constructed for a total cost of $7,000. At the time, Fort Lauderdale was the only high school in the 68-mile stretch between Miami and West Palm Beach. By 1914, enrollment reached 325 with only 47 being high school students; this was the first year with a full nine-month term.
In 1915, a 46 to 16 vote led the way for construction of a new Fort Lauderdale High School in the newly designated Broward County. The new school was located three blocks east of Andrews Avenue adjacent to Stranahan Park and was constructed for $55,000. The school was also referred to as Central High School because of the large area it served. The first graduating class in 1915 consisted of five boys. By 1916, it could boast that all nine of its teachers had college degrees. In 1923, Fort Lauderdale established its first Honor Society. 1963 saw the opening of the new Fort Lauderdale High School at its present location on NE Fourth Avenue.
The past few years have seen tremendous changes to the FLHS campus, most notably the opening of a new three-story classroom building, a modern library, and a two-story cafeteria.
2007 also saw the renaming of NE 4 Ave between the city divider and NE 13 St as “Flying L Drive” in honor of the school's commitment to education and community service. The project was completed by a group of four students in John Pellegrino's Public Affairs class.
Pre-Law & Public Affairs
A college preparatory program designed for those interested in careers in Law, Criminal Justice, and Public Affairs.
Because of its location in the county seat, the program allows students access to governmental agencies that are utilized as “living laboratories” for the ultimate learning experience. Students participate in mock trials in a courtroom housed within the school as well as take field trips to the Broward County Courthouse to witness actual trials.
Due to the high interest of its students in Pre-Law, the FLHS debate team is one of the best in the state and competes nationally while providing valuable opportunities for its students.
Advanced Studies Institute
Allows for students to take more Advanced Placement courses, putting them ahead when they enter college. They offer a wide variety of AP courses from Art to History to English.
An international pre-university program developed by Cambridge University, designed with a varied curriculum, which also allows students to earn college credit.
Fort Lauderdale High School was named as one of the top 1000 public schools in the nation in 2005, 2006, and 2007.
Dr. Gina Eyerman was also named Assistant Principal of the Year at South Plantation High in 2003 just before coming to FLHS.
Fort Lauderdale High School is infamous in Broward County for its unique mascot, the "Flying L": a large winged blue "L" with an arrow through its center. Originally the school mascot was known as "The Fort Lauderdale L". However, at the 1917 state track meet, a reporter from the Miami Herald
remarked "Look at that Flying L". The following week, the town of Fort Lauderdale voted on nicknaming all of the schools sports teams "The Flying L's".
The Athletic Program began in 1915 with only two male sports, Fort Lauderdale High now provides the students with eleven varsity sports for males and ten varsity sports for females. The school also offers four junior varsity sports for males and five junior varsity sports for females to participate in. In 1917, FLHS won their first state championship in Track, which is where the unique mascot was derived. Over the years the athletic program has accumulated fifty-nine state championships, which puts Fort Lauderdale High in the lead over all other Broward County schools. In 2001 the girl's Basketball team won the 4A State Basketball Championship and later in 2004 the Boy's Track team won the 3A State Championship and Class 3A Region 4 Championship.
We hail thee, Alma Mater
And sing thy great praise,
With loyal devotion
Remembering thy days. Be steadfast, true and faithful
Flying L's, blue and white,
Here's to you, Alma Mater
Fort Lauderdale High. When from thee we've departed
And life battles on,
Thy Spirit shall guide us
‘Til eternal dawn. Be steadfast, true and faithful
Flying L's, blue and white,
Here's to you, Alma Mater
Fort Lauderdale High.
The school currently has 1,684 students enrolled, 939 girls and 745 boys, making it one of the smallest high schools in Broward County. The school is 64% Black non Hispanic, 22% White non Hispanic, 10% Hispanic, 2% Asian or Pacific Islander, and 2% Multiracial.