School History

Learn more about the history of Robinson Secondary School.

James W. Robinson Secondary School 

  • Our school first opened its doors in 1971. The school is named for the first Virginian to receive the Medal of Honor for his service during the Vietnam War. Sergeant Robinson's actual medal is displayed in the school's entrance showcase in the main hall. The building was originally designed as the "school for the individual" with the sub-schools providing a sense of community. The first principal was Samuel J. Coffey, and the football stadium is named in his honor. The first graduating class from Robinson was the class of 1973. The school colors are blue and gold, and the school mascot is the "Ram." Robinson offers a diversified program of studies including the International Baccalaureate Program. In 2012 Robinson was ranked 88th in the Nation and 5th in the state of Virginia by US News and World Report. 
  • Renovations took place in the 90's costing close to $26 million, adding to the school a new media center (centralizing the six libraries into one media center), a lecture hall (Davala Hall, named for Dick Davala a popular social studies teacher) and many sub-school classrooms. Renovations brought a sea of trailers, nicknamed "Ram Village," and even though it created a new centralized media center and more classrooms, it meant the end of open sub-schools and the circular "mushroom" benches in the main hall. Renovations to the Little Theater also included adding a small "Black Box" theatre/classroom space and theatre support spaces for sets, props and costumes. Areas of the building and grounds were dedicated to beloved teachers and principals, giving the school a personal touch. 
  • Robert C. Russell became Robinson's second principal in 1973. Upon his retirement the Little Theater became the Robert C. Russell Theater. Subsequent principals are William E. Jackson, Ann G. Monday (the Media Center is now named the Ann Monday Media Center), Daniel F. Meier, and the current Principal Matthew W. Eline.


  • Although it has 9 acres of floorspace, the school's layout is relatively simple. It consists of a main hallway that runs east-west and is over 1100 feet long, with three primary wings that extend to the north. Each wing has two floors, with each floor housing one of the six grades (each a "sub-school" with about 700 students). Sub-schools are designated for each grade. Each sub-school contains a locker area and administrative offices in the front, with the academic areas to the north. 
  • Across the main hallway (which is named for Harry Maranian, the first Social Studies Department Chair) at the east end (across from grades 7-8) is another extensive two floored wing. This houses technical education, art, family and consumer sciences, business, and world languages. Also along the main hallway are the two smaller hallways, Admin Hall and Recital Hall, with classrooms and two large cafeterias on either side, which is directly south of grades 9-10. Music rooms are south of the cafeterias. The Music Hall is named for James Lunsford, the school's first Band Director. The Band Room is named for Denton Stokes, a long time Band Director at Robinson. Further west down the main hallway are the main administrative offices, across from grades 11-12. At the west end of the main hallway is the large gymnasium, the Harry M. Smith Field House, which has more than enough bleacher capacity to seat the entire student body. There is a wrestling room, locker rooms, two weight rooms (one for high school, one for middle school) and many storage rooms. On the south side of the field house are the athletic and P.E. locker rooms and athletic offices. At the far west end of the main hallway is the octagonal Russell Theatre, which hosts the numerous theatrical productions of Robinson's drama department as well as performances by the school's orchestras, choir and bands. This northwest corner of the main hallway is the main entrance to the school. The outdoor athletic facilities are to the west. Robinson Secondary School is part of the Occoquan Region 6C, Patriot District

Coffey Stadium

  • Coffey Stadium is the main field for football, soccer, track and field, and lacrosse teams. The total bleacher capacity is about 9,000. The stadium is named for Samuel J. Coffey, Robinson's first principal. He was a diminutive, friendly gentleman who stayed beyond his normal retirement to serve as the first principal of Robinson. The natural grass field was replaced with a synthetic turf field in the summer of 2012.  The track has also been renovated to an 8 lane track where Robinson hosts many large sporting events.

Robert Menefee Baseball Field 

  • Robert Menefee Stadium is the Robinson baseball stadium. It is named after a former long-time Rams baseball coach, and features one of the few all-natural-grass infields in Fairfax County. The current capacity is about 1,000. 

Smith Field House 

  • The Harry M. Smith Field House (named for the first Athletic Director) is the home court to the basketball teams and the volleyball team. It is the primary student gym with four separate basketball courts. 

Barry Gorodnick Softball Field

  • The Softball Stadium is named in honor of "Coach G" a longtime softball and football coach who passed away in May 2012. Mr. Gorodnick also served as the School Based Technology Specialist (SBTS) and was an alumnus of Robinson ('83).

John Epperly Wrestling Room

  • The wrestling room was named for John Epperly who coached wrestling from 1971-1991. He won 3 state titles, 14 region titles and countless District titles.

Nottingham Athletic Training Center 

  • Our Athletic Training Center was named after Larry Nottingham who was the first athletic trainer hired in Fairfax CountyHe served 99 seasons at Robinson before his retirement. The training room is where all Robinson Athletes, that are injured playing their sports, come every day.
  • Robinson Secondary School continues to be a school of excellence. Several alumni have returned to Robinson as staff members. 
  • The following quote was written by James W. Robinson, Jr. shortly before his death. "The price we pay for freedom is never cheap." The record of his performance is held in the highest regard by all members of the Robinson community and provides a model for character and leadership that extends to all facets of our school program.