Independence opened in the fall of 2004 at a cost of $29 million. Independence High School (256,000 square feet) boasts 56 classrooms, 3 computer labs, 8 science labs, a TV production facility, band and choral rooms, art rooms, counseling center, state-of-the-art media center, full production theater with seating for 450, practice gymnasium, full-size gymnasium, outdoor football stadium, soccer, baseball, and softball fields, tennis courts, cafeteria, retail center, bank, and day care facility for Williamson County employees only. Independence High School opened with 45 teachers, 10 staff and approximately 680 students.
Independence High School is located on Columbia Highway on property previously owned by the descendants of Howell Patton. High school students in the area attended Page High School, Franklin High School, and Centennial High School prior to the opening of Independence. Prior to 1975 high school students in the area attended Franklin High. Beginning in 1975 most high school students in the area attended Page High. With the opening of Centennial in 1996, some students in the area attended Centennial. In the early part of the 20th century students rode the train into Franklin to attend Franklin High or BGA High School.*
The town of Franklin is a residential/business community of approximately 30,000 located in suburban-rural Williamson County, one of the fastest growing counties in the South. Franklin has been ranked as the number one small town in Tennessee. Residents are from diverse geographic and cultural backgrounds. Independence High School borders the community of Thompson’s Station that is eight miles south of Franklin and three miles north of Spring Hill. Thompson’s Station became incorporated in 1990 as a result of the influx of population in the Spring Hill area due to the Saturn plant built in Spring Hill in 1988. Residents hoped to retain the individuality and history elements of Thompson’s Station. Thompson’s Station is named for Dr. Elijah Thompson, a civil war surgeon, who donated land for the community in 1856.* Thompson’s Station is rapidly becoming a culturally diverse community while retaining the charm of a small rural area. Franklin is a neighbor of Nashville to the north.
*Historical information courtesy of Hold Us Not Boastful by Sue Oden and “A Look Into the Past of Thompson’s Station, Tennessee” by Kathryn A. Cotton.