Maine South History

Logo in auditorium foyer
Maine Township High School District 207 was created in 1901, when Maine Township residents voted to establish a local high school and issue $15,000 in bonds to construct a building. The District’s first building, located on Thacker/Dempster Street in Des Plaines, produced its first graduating class - 3 students - in November of 1902.

By the mid-1920s, a growing student population prompted plans for a new building. Land was purchased at Dempster and Potter Road in Park Ridge, a site chosen for its central location and accessibility for residents of both Des Plaines and Park Ridge. The new Maine Township High School opened in served as district’s sole high school until the mid-1950s. 

In 1957, facing a projected enrollment of 9,000 by 1965, voters approved the purchase of two additional high school sites. The Board of Education bought farm land at Oakton and Wolf in Des Plaines and additional land at Dee Road and Talcott in Park Ridge.

Maine West High School opened at the Des Plaines site on Sept. 8, 1959. Five years later, on Sept. 8, 1964, Maine South opened at the Park Ridge site and became home to 2,570 students.

Throughout the years, students and staff have earned national and state honors for academic and extracurricular excellence. Along the way, Maine South has had opportunities to celebrate state championships, in Constitution Team, Science Olympiad, basketball, dance, football and girls swimming.

Like all Maine 207 schools, Maine South features a superb and comprehensive fine arts program, which often enhances students’ work in other academic areas, connects students to a larger world and provides exceptional entertainment to community members through concerts, theatrical productions and related events. 

In recent years, Maine South has earned a spot on the list of the Washington Post’s “Most Challenging Schools” and has also appeared on U.S. News’ list of “Best High Schools” in America, as well as Newsweek’s list of “America’s Top High Schools.”

Maine South’s Wall of Honor members include two-time Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Patricia Callahan; former U.S. Senator, Secretary of State  and presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton; former Acting U.S. Attorney General Mark Filip; internationally known climate scientist Nathan Hultman; and former Microsoft Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie.
  • Maine North High School
  • Frost Academy