Venice Union Polytechnic High School opened its doors to 52 Students in 1911. The school’s first principal Cree T. Work was selected by Abbott Kinney himself. In 1913 a new 29 acre site was purchased at 13000 Venice Boulevard for $72,500.00 In 1914 a fire destroyed the bath house (the original site of the school). New Brick buildings went up quickly on the site and the school opened on October 28, 1914.
In 1925 Venice Union Polytechnic High School was renamed Venice High School and became part of the Los Angeles School District. In 1933 the school was destroyed by the Long Beach earthquake. Students then studied in what was known as Tent City from 1933-1935. The only buildings still standing after the quake were the Boys and Girls Gymnasiums (and the Myrna Loy statue). The new school was built in an Art Deco style. In 1935 the auditorium and Fine Arts buildings were completed and are still standing today. Inside the library is a two part depression era mural that depicts life through the history of California.
1976 celebrated 50 years of the school newspaper The Oarsman and the Girl’s Athletic Association set a Guinness Book of World Records with a 24 hour marathon Leap Frog Jumping. Also in 1976 the students buried a time capsule in the Senior Court to be opened in 2076 Venice High School has been used as the backdrop for many movies and TV shows. The most famous of them is Grease. Filmed in 1978 and staring John Travolta and Olivia Newton John.
Venice High continues to be well-connected with and well-supported by the community.