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Los Angeles County High School for the Arts

Coordinates: 34°03′51″N 118°10′10″W / 34.064212°N 118.169535°W / 34.064212; -118.169535
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Los Angeles County High School for the Arts
5151 State University Drive


United States
Coordinates34°03′51″N 118°10′10″W / 34.064212°N 118.169535°W / 34.064212; -118.169535
TypePublic secondary
FounderCaroline Leonetti Ahmanson
School districtLos Angeles County Office of Education
PrincipalTina Vartanian
Teaching staff80.72 (on an FTE basis)[1]
Enrollment542[1] (2018–19[1])
Student to teacher ratio6.71[1]

Los Angeles County High School for the Arts (LACHSA, /ˈlɒksə/) is a visual and performing arts high school located on the campus of California State University, Los Angeles (Cal State LA) in Los Angeles, California, United States.


The school was founded by philanthropist Caroline Leonetti Ahmanson in 1985.[2][3]


LACHSA is a public and tuition-free school, offering both college preparatory courses and conservatory style training. Though it shares facilities with Cal State LA, the two schools' activities are usually separate. It is operated by the Los Angeles County Office of Education.[4]

The school specializes in preparing students for careers in the arts. It is one of two arts high schools in Los Angeles that allows students from any district within Los Angeles County to attend, the other being Charter High School of the Arts in Van Nuys. Acceptance into the school is based on an audition process for the approximately 130 spots available for incoming students, about 90% of whom are freshmen.

The school has five departments, Dance, Music (Vocals and Instrumental), Theatre, Visual Arts, and Cinematic Arts (Film). Specializations in Musical Theatre, Opera, Technical Theatre, and Commercial Music are also offered.

In 2012, Academy Award nominee Scott Hamilton Kennedy made an award-winning documentary about LACHSA called Fame High.[5]

In late March 2013, LACHSA officially moved many of its classes to a more permanent building on the edge of Cal State LA's campus. It has three stories, the third floor being a black box theater, where most performances from the school take place.[6]


In 2018–19 LACHSA had 542 students enrolled in grades nine through twelve, with a student-teacher ratio of 6.7:1.[1]

Demographics of student body
Ethnic Breakdown 2021 2020[7] 2019
Hispanic 25% 26% 25%
Black 10% 9% 9.6%
Asian 13% 13% 13%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander 0.2% 0% 0.2%
Native American 0.4% 0.2% N/A
White 35% 33% 35%
Multiracial 17% 19% 17.8%
Female 62% 61% 62%
Male 38% 39% 38%

Academic recognition[edit]

  • LACHSA received a GreatSchools Rating of 9 out of 10.[8]
  • LACHSA was listed as the #1 arts high school in the nation in 2023[9]

U.S. News 2021 Rankings[edit]

U.S. News 2020 Rankings[edit]

U.S. News 2019 Rankings[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "L.A. County High School for the Arts". School Directory Information. National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  2. ^ Mary Rourke, Caroline Leonetti Ahmanson, 83; Philanthropist Supported the Arts, The Los Angeles Times, July 23, 2005
  3. ^ 42nd Street in Memory of Caroline Leonetti Ahmanson, January 2006 Archived 2014-10-06 at the Wayback Machine, ArtsHighFoundation: Proudly supporting lachsa since 1985, January 17, 2006
  4. ^ "LACOE Home Version 6.0". Lacoe.edu. 2012-08-29. Retrieved 2012-09-15.
  5. ^ "Fame High".
  6. ^ "After 28 years, Los Angeles County High School for the Arts gets its own home". 5 June 2013.
  7. ^ "High School". Los Angeles County High School for the Arts. Fall 2018. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  8. ^ "Explore L.A. County High School For The Arts in Los Angeles, CA". GreatSchools.org. Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  9. ^ "2023 Best High Schools for the Arts in America". Niche. Retrieved 2023-09-15.
  10. ^ "usnews". Retrieved 2021-09-21.
  11. ^ "usnews". Retrieved 2020-12-16.
  12. ^ "usnews". Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  13. ^ ""A.I." Official Facebook". Facebook.com. Retrieved 2012-09-15.
  14. ^ http://artshighfoundation.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Official-LACHSA-Fact-Sheet.pdf [bare URL PDF]
  15. ^ "'Black-ish': Anthony Anderson 'Over the Moon' Following Emmy Nom | Access Hollywood". Archived from the original on 2015-07-19. Retrieved 2015-07-19.
  16. ^ a b c "Culture Monster". The Los Angeles Times. April 6, 2010.
  17. ^ Castuera, Ako (11 August 2008). "About". thinging. WordPress. Retrieved September 26, 2018.
  18. ^ Gurewitsch, Matthew (July 28, 2002). "MUSIC; The New Boy Wonder of the Voice". The New York Times.
  19. ^ "Gretchen Parlato Interview with Joe Montague of Riveting Riffs Magazine". Rivetingriffs.com. Retrieved 2012-09-15.

External links[edit]