The Bronx High School of Science was founded in 1938 by resolution of the Department of Education of the City of New York with Dr. Morris Meister as the first principal of the school. The school was housed in a building located at Creston Avenue and 184th Street. The building, built in 1918 for Evander Childs High School, was previously occupied by Walton High School (1930) and by an annex of DeWitt Clinton High School (1935). Bronx Science started with 150 ninth grade students and 250 tenth grade students and the remaining facilities were used by DeWitt Clinton. As Bronx Science became larger, the Clinton contingent was gradually returned to its main building. During their joint occupation, which lasted for 2 years, the two schools had separate teaching staff and classes, but the same supervision and administration.
In 1946, as a result of the efforts of Dr. Meister, our faculty, and our Parents’ Association, the school became co-ed. From the very beginning a campaign for a new building was initiated by the Parents’ Association, and sparked by the tireless dedication of Dr. Meister. In February 1958, Dr. Morris Meister, after 20 years as the principal of the school, resigned to become the first president of the newly organized Bronx Community College. Dr. Alexander Taffel succeeded Dr. Meister as principal.
Under Dr. Taffel's guidance, the plans for a new building and for its equipment were completed. Finally, on March 3, 1959, our students and faculty occupied the new building for the first time. They entered a school equipped with the most modern facilities and laboratories for carrying out its program. The problem of moving the library books from the old building to the new was solved in typical Bronx Science manner. On Friday afternoon each student took home five library books from the old library and on Monday returned them to the new library.
Principals of Bronx Science:
The achievements of the school have been many. Its graduates have gone on to success in almost every field, especially in science and mathematics. Many have become prominent in such fields as politics, atomic physics, medicine, engineering, music and health careers. Some of these individuals are, Harrison Goldin, New York City Comptroller; Oliver Koppel, New York State Assemblyman; Dr. Thomas Matthew, the first Black American neurosurgeon; Leon N. Cooper, Sheldon L. Glashow, Roy J. Glauber, Russell A. Hulse, H. David Politzer, Melvin Schwartz, and Steven Weinberg, Nobel Prize Winners in Physics; Robert J. Lefkowitz, Nobel Prize Winner in Chemistry; Harold Brown, Secretary of Defense; E.L. Doctorow and William Safire, authors; and Bobby Darin, a musician.
The future will continue to see Bronx Science in the forefront of secondary school education, preparing leaders for the technological and scientific age of tomorrow. Thus we will be able to fulfill our responsibilities to serve our communities to the best of our abilities.
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