It became apparent in 1953 that Tucson's population had grown significantly after WWII and the city was in need of more than one high school. So, the Tucson Public School's governing board voted to build two new high schools. One was to be named Pueblo High School with Elbert Brooks as its principal, and the other to be named Catalina High School with Rollin T. Gridley as its principal.
In the fall of 1954, a total of 6.800 high school students attended Tucson High School. It was the largest high school in the nation. All students were Tucson High Badgers. Most students living north of 6th Avenue attended classes in the morning session while most students living south of 6th Avenue attended classes in the afternoon. The following year, the sessions were reversed.
Beginning the fall of 1955, the north students became officially Catalina High School students. The south students became Pueblo High students. Those students living within the boundaries of Tucson High remained Tucson High students. In April 1956, Pueblo High School students moved to their new facility near Sentinel Peak (A Mountain).
After another semester at Tucson High, the doors of the newly constructed, but not totally completed, campus opened to its first student body on January 17, 1957. Catalina High School finally had a home of its own. The very first senior class graduated May 31, 1957.
In the spring of 1955, elections were held to determine who the students would be to comprise the Organizational Committee of Eleven. Their responsibilities were to write the constitution, establish traditions and practices, and to set elections for class officers. During the elections, the mascot (Trojans) and the newspaper (Trumpeteer) names were selected. The Torch was named the following year.
Catalina sports teams were organized for the 1955-56 school year with a full schedule of opponents. Despite being on the Tucson High campus, Catalina became a fully functional high school with administrators, teachers, staff, students, and sports teams.
Number of Students: