Gabrielino High School

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Gabrielino High School
Gabrielino High School crest.png
1327 South San Gabriel Boulevard


United States
Coordinates34°04′56″N 118°05′30″W / 34.0823°N 118.0917°W / 34.0823; -118.0917Coordinates: 34°04′56″N 118°05′30″W / 34.0823°N 118.0917°W / 34.0823; -118.0917
TypePublic secondary
MottoPride, Tradition, Honor
OpenedSeptember 8, 1994 (1994-09-08)
NCES School ID063442503273
PrincipalSharon Heinrich
Enrollment1,813 (2015-16)[1]
Campus size13.97 acres (0.0565 km2)
Campus typeUrban
Color(s)         Navy blue and silver
Athletics conferenceMission Valley League
Montview League
MascotBald eagle
NewspaperTongva Times
Feeder schoolsJefferson Middle School

Gabrielino High School (abbreviated GHS and often referred to as Gab) is a public high school located on San Gabriel Boulevard in San Gabriel, California, 10 miles (16 km) east of downtown Los Angeles, serving the 9th to 12th grades. It was established in 1994. Gabrielino High School is accredited by Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).


Gabrielino High School is a California Distinguished School, having received the distinction in 2001 and 2009.[2][3]

In addition, Newsweek magazine ranked Gabrielino as one of the United States' top 1000 high schools as determined by the number of Advanced Placement courses taken at the school in 2005 divided by the number of graduating seniors.[4]

In 2007, Gabrielino earned the Silver Medal status from the U.S. News and World Report based on standardized test performance in Math and English and AP courses taken and passed with a "3" or better. Based on this report, Gabrielino is placed in the top 3% of the nation or top 505 schools. About 39% of graduates go on to four-year universities nationwide while about 55% attend community college after graduation.[5] In 2012, Gabrielino High School was nationally ranked the 985th best high school, and the 190th best high school in California.[5]


Facade of Gabrielino High School
The glass-lined Media Center

Prior to 1994, high school students belonging to the San Gabriel Unified School District (SGUSD) attended San Gabriel High School, which is part of the Alhambra School District, since SGUSD did not have a high school of its own.

In April 1992, San Gabriel residents won the right to educate their own high school students by ballot measure, winning 61% of votes to establish an autonomous school operated by the SGUSD.[6] In response, the Alhambra School District (ASD) filed a lawsuit alleging that the California Board of Education had improperly excluded Alhambra voters and because ASD stood to lose as much as $1.8 million USD in state funding, since the planned high school would siphon away 1,400 students.[6][7] Homeowners in San Gabriel also led the opposition to a bitterly disputed bond measure, claiming they would fight the district's attempts to raise the funds necessary to build the high school, which would be temporarily situated at the site of the old Jefferson Middle School campus.[6] They complained the high school would cause congestion and lower their property values.[6]

On November 13, 1993, San Gabriel Unified School District officials voted 327 to 241 to name the planned high school "Gabrielino High School," which became the first public building in California to honor the Gabrielino Indians (Tongva people).[8][9]

In September 8, 1994, Gabrielino High School opened its doors to its first class, teaching 9th graders.[10] Alhambra School District retained responsibility to school 10th to 12th graders until 1995, as part of an agreement signed by both districts in June, the same month Alhambra filed its lawsuit. The school's site on Lafayette Street formerly housed Jefferson Intermediate School, which was moved to the location of the former Madison Elementary School north of Las Tunas Road.

In June 1994, the Los Angeles Superior Court ruled in favor of Alhambra, declaring that the 1992 election was unconstitutional because all the stakeholders had not been allowed to vote in the measure.[7] However, on December 22, 1994, the 2nd District Court of Appeals overturned the previous ruling, declaring that San Gabriel Unified School District residents had a right to independently establish their own boundaries, citing California Board of Education approval.[7] In January 1995, Alhambra School District dropped its case against Gabrielino High School, citing the money and time needed to pursue its goal of shutting down the high school.[11]

On March 20, 1999, an arsonist set a $2 million USD fire that destroyed 2 offices and 10 classrooms, effectively displacing 400 of the 1,400 students on campus.[12]

On December 5, 2011, the San Gabriel Unified School District Board voted 3-2 not to renew the contract of Sharon Heinrich, the school's principal, for 2012-2013 school year, citing concerns about her leadership and supervisory abilities, against the opinion of Gabrielino alumni, students and faculty.[13] On January 9, 2012, the Board reversed its previous decision, following the swearing-in of a new board and community outcry.[14]


Gabrielino High School's distinct architecture incorporates cosmopolitan trends and styles. The school's exterior uses bold colors, including shades of orange and red. The campus is built on a 13.97 acres (0.0565 km2) plot bounded by San Gabriel Boulevard to the west, Lafayette Street to the east, Wells Street to the north and Valley Boulevard to the south.

The current campus, built in 2002, is 197,974 square feet (18,392.4 m2) and consists of administration offices, classroom buildings, a media center and library, a gymnasium, and a theatre.[15]

Socioeconomic characteristics[edit]

In the 2010-2011 school year, Gabrielino High served 1,808 students.[16][17] 51.77% of students were male, while 48.2% were female.[16]

Enrollment by grade in the 2010-2011 school year was:[16]

Grade 9th 10th 11th 12th
Students 455 472 454 427

Student enrollment by ethnic group was:[16]

Ethnicity Native American Asian / Pacific Islander Black Hispanic White Multiracial
Students 3 1,088 18 584 108 7
% 0.2% 60.2% 1.0% 32.3% 6.0% 0.4%

Gabrielino High School is classified as a Title I school, with 934 students (51.65%) of students eligible for free or reduced lunch.[16]

Extracurricular activities[edit]

Speech and Debate[edit]

Ranking Nationally and is one of the top teams in California.

Mock Trial[edit]

Gabrielino defeated James Monroe High School to win the 2008 Los Angeles County championship.[18]


In December 2014, 17-year-old Sean Kim, ranked 7th in the state of California for both the 100 and 200 breaststroke events, making him the 37th nationally ranked recruit overall for the class of 2015. [19]

Track and field[edit]

In March 2011, 16-year-old Kevin Chiao, a 110-meter hurdler, ranked among the top 50 in the state of California, making him the first Gabrielino student to do so.[20]

Youth in Government[edit]

Since 1996, Gabrielino High School students have participated in a Youth in Government (YIG) program organized in collaboration with the City of San Gabriel's government.[21]

Show Choir[edit]

In 2008, Cynthia Talavera became the Choral Director and led the Advanced Show Choir to its first Gold Win in 8 years at the Forum Music Festival at Fullerton College. In 2013, Gabrielino Singers were accepted to sing at the traditional Candlelight Procession and Ceremony at Disneyland.

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Ken Gushi (Professional Drift Racer)
  • Joanna Wang (Taiwanese singer) - attended until the age of 16; did not graduate.


  1. ^ "Gabrielino High". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved November 22, 2018.
  2. ^ "2009 Distinguished Middle and High Schools". California Department of Education. 29 February 2012. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  3. ^ "California School Recognition Program Distinguished School Awardees: 1986 Through 2009". California Department of Education. 27 August 2009. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  4. ^ "The Complete List of the 1,000 Top U.S. Schools". Newsweek. 5 May 2005. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  5. ^ a b "Gabrielino High School Overview". U.S. News and World Report. 2010. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  6. ^ a b c d Boyer, Ned (28 November 1993). "School Bond Issue to Be Placed on Ballot". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  7. ^ a b c Walker, Cynthia (29 December 1994). "Court Lifts 'Cloud' Over Gabrielino High School". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  8. ^ "San Gabriel : School Name to Honor Gabrielino Indians". San Gabriel Valley Digest. 18 November 1993. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  9. ^ "San Gabriel : Clinton Not on This Ballot". San Gabriel Valley Digest. 8 July 1993. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  10. ^ "School: Gabrielino High". California School Directory. California Department of Education. 16 October 2012. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  11. ^ Walker, Cynthia (12 January 1995). "Alhambra Gives Up Fight to Close Gabrielino High". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  12. ^ Winton, Richard (2 April 1999). "High School Fire Set by an Arsonist, Officials Say". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  13. ^ Gold, Lauren (6 December 2011). "Teachers, students, alumni oppose board's decision to remove Gabrielino High School principal". San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Retrieved 16 October 2012.[permanent dead link]
  14. ^ Gold, Lauren (10 January 2012). "San Gabriel School Board unanimously votes to reinstate Gabrielino Principal Sharron Heinrich". San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  15. ^ "GABRIELINO HIGH SCHOOL". ENERGY STAR Labeled Building Profile. ENERGY STAR. 2012. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  16. ^ a b c d e "Gabrielino High". School Directory Information (2010-2011 school year). National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  17. ^ "2008-2009 School Accountability Report Card" (PDF). Gabrielino High School. San Gabriel Unified School District. January 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  18. ^ Knoll, Corina (6 December 2008). "Gabrielino High wins mock trial". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 October 2012.
  19. ^
  20. ^ "Athlete Name: Kevin Chiao". DyeStat. ESPN. Retrieved 16 October 2012.[permanent dead link]
  21. ^ Gold, Sharon (7 February 2012). "Gabrielino students take over city hall for Youth in Government Program". San Gabriel Valley Tribune. Retrieved 16 October 2012.

External links[edit]