Zama MS/HS History

Opened: 2017
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Zama Middle High School (ZMHS) is located on Camp Zama Army Base in Zama, Japan. Zama is in the Kanto Plain Region, or central area of the main island of Honshu. The school primarily serves dependents of Army, Navy, and DoD civilians from Camp Zama, NAF-Atsugi, and the Sagamihara US Army Depot and housing areas.

Zama Middle High School (originally known as Zama American High School) has a long and rich history dating back to 1958. It is the only high school in DoDEA Pacific that supports two separate installations, Zama and Atsugi.

For the 2020-21 school year the school had an enrollment of over 400 students in grades seven through twelve. The school has a block schedule that includes A and B days: A-Day has four classes and B-Day has three classes and a seminar period. The school is accredited by AdvancED. The school was established as a high school in 1958 and became a middle/high school in 2017. The school colors are black and white and the school mascot is the Trojan.

According to the 2018-2019 ZMHS yearbook:

There have been several different places on Camp Zama where ZMHS has been located. When the school originally opened, it was in a new one-story building located on the hill. It faced the main road, where the current ZMHS tennis courts are. Just behind the main office was a very small school cafeteria, and a small gym, both of which have been rebuilt. The last remnants of that time period were a set of open-air basketball courts. These courts lasted up until the summer of 2010, when they were replaced with two new courts for the tennis team.

In 1968, the high school was moved into two wooden barracks and a renovated club nearer to the current main gate of Camp Zama. One of the barracks stood where the current base library is. The second barrack was across the street where the open soccer field now lies. Bordering these two original barracks were the Yano Gym and the PX, both remain although they have been renovated over the years.

In 1980, a new high school building, 913, was built at the lower end of the football field. Since then, temporary buildings have been added to accommodate expanding student populations. In the 2006-2007 school year, Zama American Middle School again became a separate entity, sharing some of the facilities with the High School. In 2006, the former school parking lot turned into what is now building #919, which gave us much needed science and computer labs, as well as engineering and math classrooms.

In 2009, construction began on a new two-story administration building located between the old Middle School and the gym, designated #911. This is now home to all of the ZMHS administration offices, the music department, JROTC, as well as a few classrooms. During the summer break of 2010, massive renovations within ZMHS took place resulting in a new gym and locker room areas. Additionally, brand new weight rooms were built, outdoor storage areas were refurbished, and brand-new tennis courts were also constructed. Construction continued with the replacement of all bleachers inside the gym, as well as updating areas within the library.

The extracurricular activities at the school include athletics, the arts, and highly competitive Far East events. With the inclusion of the middle school with the high school, teams and activities for the middle school were included in the school’s events. There were middle school tennis, cross country, and track and field teams. The other sports and clubs from the high school were continued. During the 2017-18 school year the tennis team won its first banner in six years. The yearbook highlighted the female player on the football team.

The band had several levels, a marching band and an orchestra. The band played at Fuji-Q, a Japanese Theme Park.

The school participates in several academic activities such as Brain Bowl, AVID and STEM. The business club at the school runs the Hai Coffee Club to learn real-life business skills and to develop marketing ideas.

The administrators for the 2017-18 school year were Dr. D’Angelo and Ms. White. The next year Mr. Carter was the principal. The student body numbered 478 and there were sixty faculty and staff.

The administrators for the 2021-22 school year are Mr. Henry LeFebre and Ms. Latasha Tita.

 

Information from school yearbooks and official website

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