Suvarna Garge (Editor)

Capuchino High School

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School type  Public
Principal  Shamar Shanks
Grades  9-12
Phone  +1 650-558-2799
Colors  Green, Gold
Established  1950
Faculty  65
Enrollment  1,127 (2015-2016)
Founded  1950
Capuchino High School
Address  1501 Magnolia Ave, San Bruno, CA 94066, USA
District  San Mateo Union High School District
Similar  Mills High School, San Mateo High School, Aragon High School, Terra Nova High School, El Camino High School

Capuchino high school

Capuchino High School is a public high school in San Bruno, California, United States. The school is surrounded by the city of Millbrae on all but one corner. It is one of seven high schools in the San Mateo Union High School District, a division of the San Mateo County Office of Education.


Capuchino's rival is Mills High School in Millbrae.


The physical campus, which is just over 34 acres (140,000 m2) in size, was formerly the Spanish Rancho del Capuchino. The school opened in September 1950. There was initially only one two-story building on the campus; by 1953 most of the campus was completed. A 1,000-seat auditorium was built in 1959, supplementing the school's little theatre. In the 1961–62 academic year, just prior to the completion of Crestmoor High School, student enrollment exceeded 1,800 and almost every available space was utilized for classrooms.

In 1963, KPIX (Channel 5) filmed scenes, including a pep rally, at the school for its weekly High School Salute program. Host Dick Stewart also interviewed students and faculty in the KPIX studios during the telecast.

SMUHSD residents approved Measure D in November 2000, which authorized funding for school renovation and modernization. Capuchino has a renovated science wing, a new spirit court and cafeteria building, and several new classrooms adjoining the new administration building.

Measure M funds were approved by SMUHSD voters in 2006 which in part funded the construction of a new humanities, arts, and sciences building (HASB) and theater remodel. In April 2012 the new HASB was completed and students moved in to finish their school year.

Fine arts

The school has long been known for its music and drama programs.

Randolph Hunt was the school's first music teacher; he joined the faculty in 1950 and wrote the school's hymn, "Hail Green and Gold", and other songs. He left Capuchino in 1960 to earn his doctorate.

Ralph Bredenberg (1918–2009) became the band director in 1953 and built an outstanding marching band that performed at numerous competitions, as well as appearing at the Tournament of Roses in Pasadena, California and the nationally televised inaugural parade for John F. Kennedy in Washington, D.C. on January 20, 1961.

Kenneth L. Ton (1921–1982) was drama director at Capuchino for many years, and when Otto Mielenz (1933–2006) became choral director in 1960, they began plans for producing the school first's musical comedy productions. Randolph Hunt had preferred to present operettas by Gilbert & Sullivan, including a performance of The Mikado in 1959, when the new auditorium was completed. Ton and Mielenz first collaborated on a 1962 production of Brigadoon by Lerner & Loewe. In 1964 Mielenz left Capuchino to teach at San Bernardino Valley College, followed by Chabot College in Hayward, California. Mr. Masonson became the new choral director in 1964. Ton continued to direct plays and collaborated on additional musicals until his retirement in the early 1980s.

In the early 1980s a guiding director at Capuchino was Robert Meadows, who had formerly taught at Crestmoor High School until it closed in 1980. Meadows was the first director for the Capuchino Community Theatre, which drew performers from throughout San Mateo County and whose first productions were The Sound of Music by Rodgers & Hammerstein in 1981 and The Music Man by Meredith Willson in 1982. The 1983 production of Kismet was directed by Jack Brooks and the 1984 production of Of Thee I Sing was directed by Simon Levy. All but one of the productions were staged in Capuchino's auditorium. Within a few years, however, the Capuchino Community Theater was disbanded, due to financial shortfalls.

Capuchino broadcasts a student-run production every week to the entire school, called The Mustang News. It airs informational segments created by students in the Art of Video and IB Film classes.


Capuchino has long had an outstanding athletic department. It initially competed in the Peninsula Athletic League, which stretched from Jefferson High School in Daly City to Lincoln High School in San Jose. As more high schools were built during the 1950s and early 1960s, the Mid-Peninsula was established to include the seven high schools of the San Mateo Union High School District. Capuchino dominated league competition over the years, especially in football, basketball, swimming, wrestling, track, and tennis. During the late 1950s the school won the league championships in varsity football, basketball, and baseball, a time often referred to as "The Golden Age of Sports." Capuchino baseball players Wally Bunker and Keith Hernandez both went on to careers in Major League Baseball.

In the 1990s, Capuchino's girls' softball team won five consecutive Central Coast Section (CCS) Championships (1993–1997), and was state ranked on three occasions during this period. Capuchino also has a 32-9 Central Coast Section Playoff record, giving it the second best winning percentage of all schools in the section.


Capuchino is the only school in the San Mateo Union High School District to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme.

The school also offers ROP (Regional Occupational Program) classes for free. These include CompTIA A+ Certification (or computer system design), CCNA certification (Cisco Networking Academy), and an advanced Art of Video lab.



  • 1,127 students: 585 male (51.9%), 542 female (48.1%)
  • Approximately 21% of the students at Capuchino are served by the free or reduced-price lunch program, and approximately 12%, 138 students, of Capuchino's students are English language learners.


  • Wally Bunker, 1963, MLB player
  • Neal Dahlen, former Denver Broncos general manager
  • Luana De Vol, 1960, opera singer
  • Keith Hernandez, 1971, MLB player with the St. Louis Cardinals, New York Mets and Cleveland Indians; MVP
  • Bill Neukom, 1960, Managing General Partner of the San Francisco Giants
  • Suzanne Somers, 1964, actress
  • Darrell Steinberg, 1977, California State Legislature Speaker Pre Tempore
  • Billee Patricia Daniels 1961; Olympian athlete 1960, 1964, 1968
  • Faculty

  • Leo Ryan, history teacher and politician, 1961
  • References

    Capuchino High School Wikipedia