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The Los Angeles Leadership Academy prepares urban secondary students to succeed in college or on chosen career paths, to live fulfilling, self-directed lives, and to be effective in creating a just and humane world.
High-powered, performance-based assessment, and an integrated curriculum promote critical thinking and intellectual depth, breadth, and agility. Close relationships between students and staff and attention to students' individual needs and interests promote a community of well-rounded learners.
Students have opportunities to take action on important social issues, to work alongside community mentors, and to enhance the learning power of these experiences through reflection and skill development in the classroom.
The Los Angeles Leadership Academy opened in September 2002 with 120 students in grades six and seven. Currently, in our seventh year of operation, we serve over 400 students in grades 6-12. When students meet the gateway requirements at the middle school, they may transfer to the high school. We will continue to expand by adding one grade per year to eventually serve 455 students in grades 6-12. The middle school is housed in the education building of the Immanuel Presbyterian Church on Wilshire Boulevard, three blocks west of Vermont Avenue, but is moving to a permanent site closer to the High School soon. The high school is located at 234 E Avenue 33 in Los Angeles.
LA Leadership is a neighborhood school, though we do outreach to achieve ethnic diversity in the student body. 74% of our students are Latino, 15% are African American, 9% are Asian American or Pacific Islander, and 2% are White. The majority of our students speak a language other than English at home. Of those, 90% qualify for the federal Free or Reduced Meal program.
The Los Angeles Leadership Academy aims to inspire a love of learning in the students who are often overlooked in large urban schools, and seeks to:
• Prepare students to succeed in college or on their chosen career paths;
• Promote students' healthy personal development in an environment that prioritizes strong relationships and active participation in school and community life; and
• Build a cadre of young leaders taking action to advance their visions for a just and humane world.
The academic program emphasizes critical thought, sophistication in reading and writing, application of learning in real-world contexts, reflection, and cooperative learning. Through critical inquiry and community action projects, students examine important social issues, develop a personal philosophy and vision, and act as thoughtful, effective community leaders.