Campus Spotlight: Central High School, where Bobcats Pursue Hopes and Dreams starting with “One Person, One Thing”

Central High School Campus Spotlight image with Band Member in uniform holding trumpet

The sun has yet to rise and on a typical weekday morning, Central High School is already abuzz with students pursuing their passions, from members of the Mighty Bobcat Band running  through music and formations to healthcare students studying to pass Certified Nurse Assistant licensing exams to Bobcat and Lady Cat basketball players shooting hoops in the gym to JROTC cadets in full dress blues, collaborating on a community service project. 

With over 3,000 students, Central High School may be San Angelo ISD’s largest school, but under the leadership of Principal Bill Waters a culture of empowering students to personalize their high school experience and come together as a Bobcat community creates a more intimately connected environment for students and staff. In this week’s San Angelo ISD Campus Spotlight, we invite you to sport your “angry orange” and blue, and learn how at Central High, students pursuing hopes and dreams begins with finding their “One Person, One Thing.”

Built upon a legacy of strong West Texas pride tracing back to San Angelo High School built in 1916, Central High School has been steadily moving students and staff forward to meet the evolving needs of 21st century students. More than a mantra, the simple encouragement to every CHS student to find their “One Person, One Thing” implemented by Mr. Waters, is a way to guide students to work to connect with one educator or staff member on campus to be their “one person” to support them through both the challenges and successes of their high school experience, and to seek out their area of smartness or passion to support their dreams to be their “one thing” that drives them to be their best selves.

CHS proudly offers students many unique career-focused pathways as potential options for their “one thing” like Career and Technical Education opportunities that span many programs of study for students from healthcare to engineering to welding to culinary arts to web development and more, even including chances to earn technical dual credit, certifications, and licensures before graduation in some instances.

Students can also take part in a number of fine arts, academic and athletic extracurricular programs and clubs as another option for their “one thing”. To get a glimpse of the varied opportunities directly from Bobcat students, check out this video of students sharing their “one thing” by clicking here.

CHS highlights include a nationally recognized Speech and Debate team, the ten-time State Champion Girls Gymnastics program, UIL-sweepstakes award-winning music programs, nationally-recognized yearbooks, a DECA Club for emerging leaders and entrepreneurs that had a student advance to internationals in the 2020-2021 school year and more. CHS is also home to a 2019 NCA National Championship Cheer team, 2020-2021 State Champion Girls Golfer, 2021 Tennis Area Champions, and was recently designated as a Texas Education Agency (TEA) Purple Star Campus, an award in recognition of schools that excel in meeting the needs of military-connected students and their families.

CHS is comprised of two campuses, Central High School Main Campus for 10th through 12th grade and Central on Oakes Campus, formally known as Central Freshman Campus for 9th graders.  Unique features of Central High School include an Innovator Lab in the Library (with flexible learning space with technology to learn, create and collaborate with tools like collaboration stations, Maker Lab with a 3D printer and a Green screen studio), the Gus Clemens Aquatic Center (with an indoor pool and diving area), the Sarah Bernhardt Theatre space, and the Bobcat sculpture (a popular gathering place among students, designed and sculpted by CHS alumnus Jack Cavness).

With a long history starting when the school was known as San Angelo High School and located at the Oakes campus followed by a name change to Central High School and the beginnings of the current main campus in 1958, the Bobcats’ legacy runs deep. The legacy includes football State Championships in 1943 and 1966 and a long standing rivalry with Permian High School known as “MoJo”. The Tex-Anns drill team is also the oldest established drill team in Texas. Another proud historical piece at Central is a bell known as the “victory bell”. The bell was donated to SAISD in 1976 by Central National Bank, and is now guarded with care by the “Bell Guardians” group. The group is made up of SkillsUSA students who spiritedly ring the bell at football games after every touchdown, perhaps finding their own “one thing” as a bell guardian.

We hope you enjoyed this SAISD Campus Spotlight on Central High School. We wish our mighty Bobcats, Mr. Waters, his CHS leadership team and staff a wonderful 2021-2022 school year, and the fulfillment of, and progress toward, growing hopes and dreams and finding their own “one person, one thing”! To stay up-to-date on San Angelo ISD, please visit the SAISD website at and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.