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Broad Run High School

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School type
Public high school



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Broad Run High School

Broad Run High SchoolEntrance (2007)

School board
Loudoun County School Board

School district
Loudoun County Public Schools

21670 Ashburn Rd, Ashburn, VA 20147, USA

Park View High School, Briar Woods High Sch, Westfield High School, Loudon Schools, Herndon High School


Broad Run High School is a public secondary school in Ashburn, an unincorporated area in Loudoun County, Virginia, United States. Broad Run is part of the Loudoun County Public Schools system (LCPS).


Of the county's fifteen public high schools, Broad Run (BRHS) has experienced the most change in both its physical and demographic environments during its nearly four decades of existence. Originally a rural school serving all of eastern Loudoun County, the explosive growth of the county's population beginning in the mid-1990s has resulted in systematic reduction of Broad Run's attendance area as it spun off eight of the district's high schools from within its original boundaries. Initial surroundings of farm fields have been replaced by housing tracts and the school now possesses one of the most culturally diverse student populations in the region. Broad Run High School is also located in one of the most affluent city and county in the country with recorded average income of more than $100,000 per household. After a period of high construction in the early 2000s, the number of high schools in the area stayed the same until Rock Ridge High School opened in 2014, and Riverside High School completed construction in 2015.

Nicknamed “Cornfield High” when it opened, Broad Run’s facilities, academics, and extracurricular environments have always been challenged by its location in one of the fastest-growing counties in the United States. In 1969, Loudoun County opened its third public high school amidst corn fields in Ashburn to accommodate the growing student populations resulting from new housing developments in the unincorporated communities in the eastern half of the county. Since then, the county population has increased nearly sevenfold (most of it in the east), straining education budgets, infrastructure, and local politics. For Ashburn, this has resulted in constantly shifting attendance boundaries as new schools are constantly being opened, at all levels, elementary, middle, and high. The area’s student demographics have significantly changed as well: Loudoun County’s residents are now the country’s most affluent (per capita), and its ethnic composition continues to diversify as foreign immigration into Northern Virginia increases.

No longer able to justify the sobriquet “Cornfield High”, Broad Run High School today is surrounded by tens of square miles of high density housing developments. However, in this dynamic environment the school continues to achieve academic and extracurricular excellence and recognition, leading regional and state schools in Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) and No Child Left Behind AYB performance, as well as in such activities as forensics and sports.

Before the 2011-2012 school year, additional lockers were installed due to increases in the school's population.

Broad run high school at spirit bowl cheer 2016


Public education in Ashburn predates Broad Run's debut in 1969. In 1892 a school for African-Americans was built in Old Ashburn. At a cost of $6,000, a separate school, known as Ashburn High School, was built for both elementary and high school white students in 1911. It was a four-room wood frame schoolhouse; additions to the original structure were made in 1922, 1930, and 1934. The school served white Ashburn students until February 14, 1944, when the entire building was destroyed by fire. Its replacement, an elementary-only brick structure, was constructed in 1945 and is still in use. Known as the Ashburn Annex, it is a training center for LCPS and has also been used for Broad Run High School population overflow.

In the 1960s high school age children from eastern Loudoun County attended Loudoun County High School. As Dulles Airport and residential developments, such as Sterling Park, opened close to the Fairfax County border, Loudoun County High School's population began to outgrow the facility. The decision to construct a high school in rural eastern Loudoun County was made. The strain on Loudoun County High School, however, was so severe that its eastern Loudoun students were temporarily schooled in the then-recently closed Douglass High School in Leesburg. Thus, the first Broad Run High School class actually formed in 1968, a full year before the Broad Run Ashburn campus construction was completed. 1968 had been the first year that the county schools were completely racially integrated, making the previously all-black Douglass High School available as it closed and its population moved to other county schools.

The campus of the district's third high school (Loudoun County High opened in 1954 and Loudoun Valley High School opened in 1962), opened its doors in 1969 to grades 8–12, for students from all of Ashburn, Arcola, western Chantilly (now known as South Riding), and Sterling. Named for the nearby Potomac River tributary, Broad Run was dedicated on October 13, 1969. The ceremony's keynote address was delivered by then-Governor of Virginia, Mills E. Godwin Jr. At the time, Loudoun's three high schools were not limited to 9th through 12th grades since there were no middle schools. Broad Run, therefore, had a "Thetamen" class for two years, its name for eighth graders (similar to calling ninth graders "Freshmen"). In 1976 a portion of the Sterling student body was moved to Park View High School. By 1979 the Thetamen were shifted to newly opened middle schools. As the Ashburn area grew considerably, additional students shifted to Potomac Falls High School in 1997. Stone Bridge High School opened in 2000, which split the Ashburn student body into two different high schools. Broad Run gave the remainder of its Sterling student population to Potomac Falls after Dominion High School opened in 2003 and shifted students in Brambleton and Arcola to Stone Bridge. In 2005, Broad Run split off its South Riding students to Freedom High School.. In 2014, Broad Run moved some of its students in the Dulles area to Rock Ridge High School. In 2015, Broad Run shifted students who live in University Center and Potomac Farms to Riverside High School in Lansdowne in order to relieve overcrowding. In addition to this, Broad Run also transferred students living in Ashburn Run, Timberbrooke Estates, The Ridges at Ashburn, and many other subdivisons located off of Ashburn Road to Stone Bridge.

Enrollment history

Broad Run's student population averaged 1,486 students during the period 1995–2006. The county's steady population increases during this time resulted in accompanying student body expansions, periodically relieved as other high schools opened in eastern Loudoun County (note the population drops in the table below as these schools opened – Potomac Falls in 1997, Stone Bridge in 2000, Dominion in 2003 and Freedom in 2005).

*includes an eighth grade class of 244 students


The campus sits on 39.96 acres (161,700 m2) along Ashburn Road, across from the Ashbriar community. It has been renovated and expanded many times since its opening in 1969 and is located ½-mile south of Farmwell Road and one mile (1.6 km) north of the Dulles Greenway. The main building houses 75–80 classrooms, three computer labs, a media center (library), auditorium, cafeteria, school store, weight room, and two gymnasiums. The grounds include a sports stadium for football, track and field, lacrosse, and soccer; a baseball diamond; a softball diamond; six tennis courts; a concession stand; practice fields for lacrosse and football; and a pre-school playground.


The Broad Run attendance boundaries encompass the Ashburn communities of Ashburn Village, Farmwell Hunt, and University Center, as well as the Ashbrook residential subdivisions. The LCPS middle school of Farmwell Station and, by extension, the elementary schools Ashburn Elementary, Dominion Trail, Discovery, Cedar Lane and Steuart W. Weller feed students to the high school. A limited number of students living in neighboring communities outside the current attendance boundary, such as Ashburn Farm and Brambleton also attend as a result of frequent boundary changes and the school board's policy of "grandfathering" students.

The ethnic/racial composition of Broad Run's student body in the 2006–2007 school year was 64% White, 11% Black, 11% Hispanic, and 14% Asian.

Administration and faculty

The school's administrative team is headed by the principal and includes three assistant principals, the director of guidance, and the athletic director. The principal and school, as part of LCPS, are under the direction of the Superintendent, who operates under the authority of the elected Loudoun County Board of Education.

Broad Run has had only five principals since it opened: James C. McBride (1969–1979); E. Wayne Griffith (1979–1996); Edgar T. Markley, Ed.D. (1996–2010), Doug Anderson (2010–2014), and David Spage (2014–present). Its principal before Doug Anderson, Edgar T. Markley, a 2003 recipient of The Washington Post's Annual Distinguished Educational Leadership Award, retired after the 2009–2010 school year.

There are 117 teachers, yielding a teacher/student ratio of 1:14.


Students mainly attend classes on the Broad Run campus, but have opportunities to take additional, specialized courses at LCPS's magnet and alternative schools, such as science and math at Loudoun Academy of Science or vocational education classes at C.S. Monroe Technology Center.

The school's instructional curriculum is set primarily by the LCPS district office based on Virginia Department of Education requirements. Broad Run's curriculum is typical of Virginia and United States secondary schools. Broad Run is one of only three LCPS schools teaching Mandarin Chinese (initiated in 2006–2007).

Students attending the Loudoun Academy of Science at Dominion High School in Sterling and C.S. Monroe Technology Center in Leesburg do so every other class day, taking their non-magnet classes (typically core courses, such as English, social sciences and electives) at Broad Run on the alternate days.

In the fall 2007–spring 2008 school year, AP physics students at Broad Run were credited with the discovery of Asteroid 2007 TW04, which they have officially begun calling "Sparta" in honor of the Broad Run Spartans. The team, led by their AP Physics teacher, was awarded by NASA.


Broad Run is a fully accredited high school based on the Standards of Learning (SOL) examinations in Virginia. Virginia high schools are considered fully accredited if students achieve pass rates of 70% or above in all four content areas (English, mathematics, history/social sciences, and science) on SOL examinations administered during the previous school year. Broad Run's pass rates for the 2006–2007 SY were: English – 95%; Math – 87%; History – 91%; and Science – 85%.

Broad Run's "Fully Accredited" status extends back a number of years:

SAT scores

The average Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) score in 2006 for Broad Run was 1,568 (535 in Math; 525 in Verbal; 508 in Writing). These scores compare favorably to averages for other LCPS high schools, and are significantly better than the average performances of Virginia students and the United States overall.

Performance history for Broad Run students during the span from 2000 to 2006 shows a steady improvement in Math scores (note that the College Board added the Writing component to the examination for the first time in 2006, and the Critical Reading section was previously called Verbal). In 2006 the school was the only Loudoun County high school whose average SAT scores increased from the previous year.

NCLB and Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP)

To meet the requirements of the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), the state of Virginia utilizes its Standards of Learning (SOL) examinations as its progress measurement tool. NCLB requires states to set annual measurable objectives of proficiency in reading and mathematics, participation in testing, and graduation and attendance. These objectives are in addition to the high standards for learning and achievement required under Virginia’s SOL program. Schools and school divisions that meet the annual objectives required by the federal education law are considered to have made adequately yearly progress (AYP) toward the goal of 100 percent proficiency of all students in reading and mathematics by 2014.

Broad Run has maintained Adequate Yearly Progress for the school years 2003–2004 through 2005–2006. The percentage of students passing the English and Math tests at Broad Run averages higher than Loudoun County as a whole, but lags slightly behind in Science by three points.

Extracurricular activities

Broad Run High School offers a number of extracurricular activities to its students and staff outside the regular instructional curriculum. All school sponsored clubs and activities are supervised by a faculty or staff member, although much of the organizational responsibilities are often handled by students. In addition to the fine arts, athletic and other programs detailed below, the extracurricular activities sponsored by the school range from service organizations (Environmental Club and Key Club) to academic (National Honor Society and Academic Team & Signet) to professional (DECA and FBLA) to cultural (Muslim Student Association, German Club, Gay-Straight Alliance, and Spanish Club) to special interests (Chess Club and Dance Team).


In addition to its drama instruction, Broad Run students and staff produce and stage at least three major theatrical performances each year. These productions include a full-length play in the fall, a one-act play festival in the winter, and a musical in the spring. Participation in shows is open to all students, regardless of enrollment in a drama class. 2005 and 2006 productions included The Government Inspector, The Secret Garden and Noises Off.


Broad Run's band program includes over 100 students, with two concert bands (symphonic band and wind ensemble), a marching band, jazz, percussion and chamber ensembles, a jazz lab, and music theory classes. The program has won many awards and competitions over a three-decade history, both locally and at national competitions held in Orlando, Florida, Virginia Beach, Virginia, Walt Disney World, Atlanta, Georgia and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Broad Run has four times been named a Virginia Honor Band, the top award for bands in Virginia (1996–1997, 2003–2004, 2012–2013, and 2013-2014). Broad Run students regularly win positions in the All Virginia Band and Orchestra, which consists of the top high school musicians in the Commonwealth. The Marching band has also received the placement of fifth in the nation for USBands, at the USBands National Competition held at the MetLife stadium in New Rutherford, New Jersey in the year 2013 - 2014.

Subsequent to Loudoun County Public Schools' initiating middle school string programs in 2002 to 6th graders, Broad Run and the other nine Loudoun high schools also began string ensembles in the 2005–2006 school year. Since Loudoun does not offer a full orchestra program at the high school level, students from upper level bands occasionally perform concerts with the combined strings classes.

Color Guard

Broad Run's color guard program competes in both the fall and winter athletic seasons. The Fall and Winter Guards have won almost every competition they have attended since 2001. The Fall Guard competes as a unit of the marching band (Marching Spartans), while the Winter Guard competes indoors independently against various guards from all across the Mid-Atlantic region. The 2006 show was dedicated to the Race for the Cure for breast cancer with the music selection and choreography tailored to the theme. In addition, the Winter Guard collected donations throughout the season to donate for breast cancer research and participate in the 2006 Race for the Cure, raising US$8,825.17. In the same season, the combined Broad Run/Heritage Winter Guard won the Gold Medal in their division (Independent Regional A Class) at the Atlantic Indoor Association Championships in Raleigh, North Carolina. Their 2007 Winterguard, Airplane, received 4th at championships. Last year, the 2007 winterguard season, they performed "Ready, Set, Don't Go" and received the bronze medal at championships now at the Scholastic A1 class.

Debate and Speech

The school has a successful debate team, having won the inaugural AA State Championship in 2004, coming within two points of the title in 2005 (losing to cross-town rival Stone Bridge), and winning its tenth Group AA debate title since 1991 at the 2006 Virginia High School League (VHSL) Debate Tournament. More recently, in 2009 the debate team took the state title for the 12th time in 19 years. Prior to 2004, team championships were not awarded in debate at the state level, though Broad Run regularly filled the ranks of individual champions: from 2000 to 2006 Broad Run had 20 individual VHSL champions. Three display cases around the school are dedicated solely to trophies won by the debate team (see image). The debate team is the only Broad Run team to consistently send members to national tournaments across the United States.

There are four types of debate that have active participation at Broad Run: Policy, Lincoln-Douglas, Student Congress, and Public Forum. Speech is part of the team, but is a separate event with VHSL States and other tournaments holding debate and speech separately.


Students have a number of publishing education and experience opportunities, including The Shield (yearbook), The Spartan (newspaper) and a literary/visual arts publication titled The Spartan.

Broad Run is a member of the AA Dulles District of the Region II of the Virginia High School League, and sponsors girls and boys athletic teams in the following sports: baseball, boys and girls basketball, cheerleading, cross-country, football, golf, gymnastics, boys and girls lacrosse, boys and girls soccer, softball, boys and girls tennis, track, swimming, volleyball, and wrestling. The mascot is a Spartan

Broad Run has also had state champions on an individual level in Wrestling (Sean St. Clair, Sean Sprague, Chad Burns, and Brandon Calderwood), including a handful of ALL Americans 1993– Chad Burns 1994– Jason Grant

Marlow Tally (1992) was also a decorated basketball player in Europe. Jason Lansdowne (1993) set a State record for PPG at the AA level.

Numerous student athletes from the school have advanced to Division I and II sports programs across the nation.


Like the school's band and debate team, Spartan softball has achieved a notable degree of success. The teams of 2000 and 2002 set new state records for various team categories, such as total runs scored in a season, consecutive shutout innings, total strikeouts in a season, and total strikeouts in one game. Christy Anch, pitcher for the Lady Spartans from 1999–2002, personally holds 22 individual state records in the Virginia High School League.

Spring 2007 was a particularly good season for most of that season's teams. The girls soccer, girls lacrosse, girls softball, boys baseball, boys lacrosse, and boys track teams all won their respective district titles. Broad Run ended up winning the state championship for softball (Group AA), Broad Run's second in the past decade (won in 2000 and played in the championship 2002). Ranked fifth in the nation by USA Today with a 29–0 record, the Lady Spartans defeated New Kent County High School for the championship behind Caitlyn Delahaba's pitching (no-hitter, 12 strikeouts). Delahaba attained 400 strikeouts in 2007, third place in Virginia High School League history for strikeouts in a season.

Spring 2008 proved to be another successful season for Broad Run's softball team. Fr the second year in a row, Broad Run's softball team under the leadership of Caitlin Delahaba completed a perfect, undefeated record in softball, winning the state championship and becoming the nation's best high school softball team according to USA today. In addition, Broad Run's softball team has become history's fourth greatest high school softball team with 57 straight game victories.


The football program experienced limited degrees of success between 2000-2006, fielding only two teams with winning records (2003 and 2004 / 6–4 records) in that time period. Losing seasons in 2002 and 2005 led to the replacement of Ken Belchik as head coach with Michael Burnett in 2006. The team's record was 5–5 in 2006. In 2007, the Spartans had a perfect 10–0 regular season, winning the district championship, but lost to rival Park View High School in the first playoff round. In 2008, the Spartan football team won the AA Division 4 state championship, with a 14–0 record. In 2009 the team won a second state title against Amherst. Since then, the team has continued to be successful in the regular season and playoffs, but after head coach Michael Burnett left after the 2009 season, (being replaced by an assistant coach from rival Stone Bridge - Matt Griffis) the team has not won another state title.


While a relatively new sport to the school, the Broad Run swim team has enjoyed much success in recent years. Under the coaching of Beverly Kelley. the men's team didn't lose a single meet from 2007-2011, winning 26 consecutive dual meets and 4 consecutive Dulles District titles, along with being Region II runner-up in 2011. In this period, the men's team won a total of 4 Virginia AA state titles, including the 2010 200 Freestyle Relay team of Michael Poltash, Alan Horback, Jacob Leidy, and Mark Sarman winning in a time of 1:29.09 at Old Dominion University in Norfolk.


Currently Broad Run's main rivals are Stone Bridge High School and Briar Woods High School in Ashburn. However, for most of its history Broad Run has had a rivalry with Park View High School, though it has died down in recent years. They also enjoy rivalries with Park View High School in softball, Loudoun County High School in girls' basketball and girls' soccer, and Potomac Falls High School in boys' soccer. The Stone Bridge High School versus Broad Run Football game is one of the largest athletic events of the year, nicknamed 'Battle of the 'Burn'.

The Maroon Crew

In 2002, several students founded an informal spirit organization called the Maroon Crew. The group's chief purpose was to instill a sense of school pride and invigorate spectators at athletic events. They distributed "Maroon Crew" T-shirts to other students and encouraged students to join Maroon Crew members in attending Broad Run games and leading spectator cheers. A section of the stadium stands are now painted and reserved for the maroon crew.

Notable alumni

  • Patton Oswalt, actor, writer, voiceover artist and comedian: graduated in 1987; attended the College of William and Mary, a member of the Broad Run Speech and Debate team who regularly contributes money to the team
  • Larry Izzo, football player for the New England Patriots, attended and played football from 1988–1990 before moving to Texas; attended Rice University.
  • Pam (Ahearn) Howe [1], Class of 1988, starred in Suddenly Royal
  • Alex Field, played football at Virginia, and on the practice squads of the Cleveland Browns and Arizona Cardinals.
  • Brandon "Magellan" Paul, radio host on WOCM in Ocean City, MD. Graduated from Broad Run in 2009
  • Conor Mullee, pitcher with the New York Yankees; attended Saint Peter's University
  • Nate Boyle, All-American swimmer for Auburn University, member of 1999 NCAA Championship team
  • Brian Haymond, voiceover artist and audio production talent: graduated in 1982
  • Taylor Clarke, drafted as a pitcher in the 3rd round of the 2015 MLB Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks; attended College of Charleston
  • References

    Broad Run High School Wikipedia

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