Garces Memorial High School
Founded in 1947, the school is named after Father Francisco Garcés, a Spanish Franciscan priest and missionary who explored much of the southwestern part of North America, including what is now the Bakersfield region. The school is located near the terminus of the Panorama (aka China Grade) Bluffs on the exact site Father Francisco Graces wrote would make a perfect place for a mission for the local Indian populace in his exploration of the Rio Bravo de San Felipe (now known as the Kern River). This site overlooks central Bakersfield atop a bluff that was once the delta of the Kern River.
In the early years, the Dominican Sisters' Congregation of St. Thomas Aquinas taught the girls and handled the school's administration and the Brothers of the Christian Schools (Christian Brothers) taught the boys. The Christian Brothers, due to financial issues within their order, withdrew from the school in 1971 and the school became fully co-educational. In 1978 the administration of the school was taken over by the laity and is currently overseen by the Fresno Diocesan Office of Education, who also oversees Garces' main rival, San Joaquin Memorial High School of Fresno.
The Garces sports teams, nicknamed the Rams, compete successfully in CIF Central Section Division III. Currently, Garces holds the Valley Championship in football and is coached by David Fanucchi.