Highland Park


Aldama Dual-Immersion Kindergartens star in their own LA Times front page California section piece!   Big congratulations to all involved!!!  And good luck, kids!!!

Either go to latimes.com and search “Aldama Elementary” (piece ran 9/4/08) or try this link:


Our fab Highland Park public school mom pals Jessica and Courtney initially let us know this good news.  If you’re looking for great public school options in Highland Park, contact:

Courtney Mykytyn (pronounced Ma-Kitten)


(323) 256-0436


While we always recommend visiting your local home school first, it’s worth noting that Highland Park is home to:

Latona Elementary

which as of last year was an 8 magnet point school.  So if Latona is your home school, your kindergartener is automatically at the topic of any magnet school list.  Nearby magnet schools parents say they love include:

Arroyo Seco Museum Magnet (K-grade eight)

Plasencia Math/Science Magnet (K-5) (boasts whom we biasedly feel is one of the best and funniest math teachers in the world!)

Parent contact for Plasencia:

Virginia Keeney (president of Plasencia parent group):



14 thoughts on “Highland Park

  1. I’d just like to give a “thank you” to Sandra for her suggestions to parents at Mt. Washington elementary. I attended the Magnet school discussion and found it to be very……….insightful. The number one message of: if a parent invests as much time and energy to their child’s future school as they do at Mt. Washington, they’re child and the school will be fine. I’ve seen first hand the parent paranoia. It’s scary. I worked at Mt. Washington for 5 years and I’ve seen some pretty devoted, but crazy parents. Thanks again.

  2. Thanks, Jennifer!

    One of our central missions/challenges of this whole 21st century U.S. public education deal is making parents feel empowered, particularly, weirdly enough, powerful parents. Not speaking of Mt. Washington particularly because I don’t truly know the population, although the demographic MAY apply, sometimes the most educated, intelligent parents feel the most helpless and powerless (causing them to “hive” fearfully together in tiny elite enclaves). Meanwhile, out in places like Van Nuys, many of the rest of us are going: “Hey! New parent WITHOUT biker tattoo! THAT’S diversity!”

    I can’t wait until Mt. Washington families “brand” a public middle school. . . That would be such a terrific boon for the area.


  3. Hello! What does it mean that Latona is an “8 magnet point school.” My son will be attending Kindergarten in the Fall and we live right on the boundary between Latona and Glen Alta, however, the LAUSD School Finder lists our neighborhood school as Glen Alta. I’m wondering if we’d have a better chance at a Magnet school if our local school was Latona?

    Thanks for all the information. Love the site!

    Mary Jane

  4. Dear Mary Jane,
    For a primer, go to top right of our website, under PAGES, and scroll down to “Top FAQ’s re: magnet schools.” Feel free to post any further questions once you read that. In the meantime, the short answer is yes, while demographics change from year to year, it currently appears that an LAUSD home school of Latona would yield 8 magnet points (PHBAO and three-track) while Glen Alta would yield 4 magnet points (PHBAO and single-track, which is NOT considered overcrowded).

  5. Thanks, Sandra, for hyping our Dual Language academy at Aldama… Coming to the end of the fall “semester”, I am so damn happy to say that all is swell at our little neighborhood school. My boy is LOVING his kindergarten teachers and the whole thing is remarkably lovely. Here’s to all your hard work for the public schools. Really!


  6. Hi there!

    Does anyone know of there is a Magnet Program at Luther Burbank Middle school in Highland Park on Figueroa, (Los Angeles)?


  7. We’re moving from NYC this summer and while we love Los Feliz and Silver Lake (toured Franklin Ave, Ivanhoe & Micheltorena) I think we’re priced out housing-wise and are looking in Eagle Rock and Highland Park now.
    I’ve noticed most of the eastside schools don’t have much information online. Can anyone help us narrow down our search for where to tour when we’re out next?
    And we won’t be eligible for a magnet since we’re relocating, right?
    Also, our child tested into G&T (99% in NYC), but not sure if that will transfer over in the same way to LAUSD. How would I find that out?
    We really believe in public schools and want to have our child attend a neighborhood school, but still get a great education and be part of the community.

    • Hi Dara – Not sure if you’re still checking this but your situation mirrors our own (several years down the line) – likely priced out of Silver Lake/Los Feliz and looking further east. Just curious how it worked out for you guys, where you landed etc. Thanks.

      • Hi Joe — got this an an email alert.
        When we moved we rented a place in Franklin Hills and our son went to Franklin for elementary, which was fantastic. Then we bought a place in Atwater Village that we love, and he’s now finishing up at Thomas Starr King Middle School at the GAT magnet, which has been great.
        I’m not sure we’d be able to afford Atwater now, even though it’s only been a few years. Some places in Silver Lake are actually becoming more affordable than here now. The 2 elementary schools in Atwater are quite good and seem to only be getting better although we know people in the neighborhood who opted for established charters or new magnets elsewhere.
        Best of luck!

  8. Hello,
    We live in Highland Park and our son is going headed into Kindergarten next year. (Our local school is Yorkdale Elementary.) We are just diving into this process, and would be eager to hear from those with experiences at Aldama, Buchanan magnet and San Pascuel which I understand has a new magnet program.
    For those who were active on this thread months/years earlier (if you see this)…I’d be curious to know where you ended up and how you fared!
    Thanks and much appreciated!

  9. We toured Buchanan several times and were very impressed with it academically. We did get into it. However, we ultimately decided it wasn’t the right fit for kinder. We wanted more play and arts integration and social / emotional support. The school doesn’t even have play equipment. We are now at Los Feliz Charter School for the Arts in Glassell Park. It is amazing .

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