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L.A. County High School For The Arts2
Posted October 22, 2014
- a student
This low rating is only because I am a student in the (flawed) Theatre Department and have dealt with the subpar academics, especially in math. This year LACHSA decided they not able to move classes around for a large fraction of Seniors wanting to take a language and math, so me and many other students were forced to not take math or a language class this year because it was simply not provided. The Senior English teacher was not hired until halfway through the first semester, so my class had to deal with a wide range of substitutes, none of which could teach. As for the Theatre Department, it is hardly fair and opportunities to perform are slim if you do not have the "right look" or are not close with the teacher or department head. This is understandable considering the department is preparing theatre students for the real, professional world, but valuing looks or connections over talent is something almost too commonly seen, especially when casting time for shows comes around. I know many students who do not enjoy theatre any more because of their experiences at LACHSA.
Great school! Pros: Strong visual arts program Great for college portfolios Has A.P. classes A lot of like-minds Academic teachers who (for the most part) understand their artistic pupils. Very friendly and nourishing environment Very edgy/stylish architecture Cons: Would love to see better math teachers who TEACH Too many theater kids The college doesn't like us very much (they blame everything on us) Hallways = worse than LA traffic
Our daughter loves the visual arts program. The teachers go out of their way to provide the support she needs in both academics and the arts. There is always something exciting going on as the team draws in the world for the students.
Looking at it from a very objective point of view, LACHSA is a school that is in development. The school itself likes to be liberal and accepting of which it is, but some of its ideas are half-accomplished or are not executed properly. Subtle things, such as not allowing the kids to use the elevators or the exits are not good security measures since they use them anyways because the hallways are so crowded and though new and better teachers have come, some teachers that do not match up to proper standards cannot be rid of because of their seniority. Of course, some ideas are well executed, with many of the teachers having an artistic or interesting background and able to support and socialize with the students. The art classes are generally well-liked by the students and does give an experience that most high schools do not have the capability of doing. With its idealogy and motivation, LACHSA, with improvement, can reach new heights.
My son is exhilarated every morning when he wakes up to go to LACHSA. He loves the teachers, he loves his classes and most of all he is so excited with the theater arts classes and thankful for the opportunity to go to high school with other kids that love acting!
My son completed his first semester at LACHSA and loves it. He struggles academically (especially with the arts load) but his teachers are very supportive and give him every opportunity to succeed. I have found them all to be very caring. I am sure that the AP classes are more challenging if your student can handle them along with their arts. LACHSA is not about performances or being a star. If that is a priority then another place may suit them better, i.e. Hollywood High. LACHSA is about learning the fundamentals and different aspects of an art field that would not likely be taught in high school, i.e. different acting, singing, painting, dance styles or techniques; music theory, sight reading. The students are being prepared so they have the background to truly become an artist in a socially accepting diverse environment. We have donated $ and gone to the various fundraisers but I have never felt any pressure to give anything more than I wanted to give. I doubt that I could ever give enough $ to equal the opportunity my son is receiving at LACHSA. Review the course offering on their site to get a better feel as to what LACHSA is about before you decide to apply.
My son has been at LACHSA for the past 3 years and loves it. Although he is doing poorly academically, it is his fault, no one else's. The staff and administration have been nothing but fantastic and have bent over backwards to keep this kid on track. Thank God he has his music - at least he is developing his work ethic somehow. I know the school asks for money - what school wouldn't when their budget is routinely slashed on a regular basis? Who should pay for this premiere education if not the parents?? Supporting the school financially, even if it's $1.00/month is appreciated and the least one can do for a school that gives so much.
Very poor school. The arts are fine, but every time you turn around, you are being asked for money. That is hard because they make you feel guilty if you don't have much money--like you don't deserve to be there, like you are unworthy. Lots of favoritism within the "arts" programs, your student may get a single line in a production, but you are constantly reminded how "lucky" you are to be there. Mornings are academic classes, and there are only a handful of part-time teachers who are not very good at all. Arts are always on the chopping block, and already have been cut on Fridays. You have to decide what is important. I could have the best actor who can only get a job at Burger King? All you ever hear about as a parent is "fundraising, give money, donate", and the students are too preoccupied with fund-raising day and night, even expected to give money themselves. It is presented as "being dedicated". School appears good on the surface, but it doesn't have much over the long-run, except for the "favorites". A small group of parents are vocal supporters, they get the benefits for their kids and the rest are left behind. Not a good place if you have high standards.