About Our School

“Things do not happen; things are made to happen.” John F. Kennedy

John F. Kennedy High School is a comprehensive high school located in the Bear Valley neighborhood, serving students in grades 9-12. With a highly-qualified staff, engaging and diverse course options, a plethora of clubs and athletic opportunities, and a stellar counseling department, JFK is a top choice for students across the district.

JFK provides a variety of options for our students, as high school is all about learning and exploring who we are and who we want to be as we grow. Academic options, including International Baccalaureate and Career Connect pathways are at the heart of our program, but students can also choose to pursue a combination of coursework with a focus on future careers or fields of study.

We also recognize the need for a well-rounded education, which is why a broad range of electives and extracurricular activities are offered. Film, graphic design, drama, choir, engineering, art, business, photography, and instrumental music are just some of the many fun and interesting course options we offer.

JFK is 1 of 10 schools within Denver Public Schools that has been recognized as a Whole Child Distinguished School. 

JFK empowers the Whole Child through best-in-class programming across the academic, social-emotional, and postsecondary domains.

JFK pushes students to see beyond their known scope of Southwest Denver and to become champions of change for themselves and their loved ones. The Whole Child strategies provide a solid foundation for students to “take command” of their futures. 

We utilize the ASSET education mindfulness curriculum in our classes to offer anxiety reducing lessons. We also offer advisory classes where advisory teachers are available to support their students in academic and social emotional goals as well as provide them with resources and tools to propel their success.

Additionally, the JFK School Counseling Program has been recognized as a Model Program by the American School Counseling Association since 2009. We have been proven to and recognized for providing a model comprehensive school counseling program where we are able to thoroughly and appropriately meet the needs of our students academically, with college and career readiness, and by addressing social emotional needs. In the 2018-2019 school year, we were one of the first and only school counseling programs in the entire country that applied for the RAMP designation for the 4th consecutive time.

PRIDE Posters

Commander PRIDE has been a schoolwide rally cry for decades so it was an intentional practice to continue that tradition. Our Principal, Tiffany Almon, began the work of developing our P.R.I.D.E (Professionalism, Respect, Inclusion, Dedication, and Excellence) values through empathy interviews with staff and student leadership groups to get a sense of what this school was missing. The development of this code was an intentional strategy of reconnecting as a Commander family through a common language. That common language stemmed from the deeply rooted pride of this high school but transformed into an acronym that could bolster all JFK Whole Child support systems.

P.R.I.D.E. posters are displayed throughout classrooms to remind students how to successfully engage in these values. In addition, JFK hosts monthly school-wide P.R.I.D.E. assemblies, during which students and faculty are recognized for their leadership in one of the five P.R.I.D.E. values.


Our History

John F. Kennedy High School first opened its doors for the 1965-1966 school year, and it has been proudly serving students and families in the Southwest Denver community and beyond for over 50 years.

John F. Kennedy High School was named in honor of President John F. Kennedy, who was assassinated in 1963, only two years prior to the school’s opening.

Our mascot is the Commanders, which represents President Kennedy’s service as a Naval Commander in the South Pacific on the PT 109, a Patrol Torpedo boat, during WWII. He was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for demonstrating leadership and courage while saving numerous shipmates, as well as a Purple Heart for injuries sustained as a result..

JFK’s school colors, Navy Blue and Kelly Green, also represent President Kennedy. The Navy Blue represents his naval career, and the Kelly Green represents his Irish Catholic faith, as he was the first Catholic to ever be elected President of the United States.

Notable Alumni

ROTC Leaders