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LAUSD and Mentor LA Cut Ribbon on West Adams Prep

For Immediate Release							
	August 23, 2007
Contacts: Samantha Koos (213) 241-4871				
	#07/08-037
          Chunghah Hoffman (213) 455-1325 ext.160              
					

LAUSD AND MENTOR LA CUT RIBBON ON WEST ADAMS PREP Unique Collaboration 
Provides New Model for Public High School Reform

Los Angeles - Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board 
President Mónica García and Superintendent David L. Brewer III joined 
Mentor LA (MLA) and members of an already well developed school 
community to cut the ribbon on West Adams Prep High School. The new 
school is the result of an innovative collaboration between LAUSD and 
MLA, providing a model for a public high school that offers an 
exceptional education that is open and accessible to every child in the 
neighborhood.

       "It gives me great pride to be here today celebrating the 
opening of yet another neighborhood school for the children and 
families of Los Angeles," said Board President García. "West Adams 
Prep, in partnership with Mentor LA, will serve as a model school that 
demonstrates the importance of teamwork in supporting students for 
success."

       MLA, a nonprofit organization working to improve schools and 
empower neighborhoods in some of the most disenfranchised communities 
in Los Angeles, has partnered with LAUSD in planning and building the 
school from the ground up. The campus has eight full-time staff housed 
on campus to provide effective and responsive co-leadership for West 
Adams Prep students. MLA staff will work side by side with District 
teachers and administrators in a hybrid model of shared leadership to 
manage the school and offer students innovative instruction including a 
daily advisory period for every student each year and a senior project 
for every 12th grader.  

       "Our relationship with Mentor LA here at West Adams is proof of 
the value partnerships can offer in transforming the education we 
provide our students," said Superintendent Brewer. "Mentor LA has 
helped to create the atmosphere of optimism, encouragement and 
community support all students need and deserve to achieve success."

       "I believe in teamwork and empowering every person on our staff 
to have an entrepreneurial approach to their job-and together, with 
MLA, we have assembled a team of visionary leaders and dedicated 
teachers who are ready to face the challenges ahead," said West Adams 
Principal Dr. Edward Robillard. "We have carefully planned every aspect 
of the school culture with parents and students and we believe we will 
deliver the service our families deserve. I am proud to be a part of 
this once-in-a-lifetime project we call West Adams Preparatory High 
School." 

       The six small schools that comprise West Adams Prep's academic 
program will benefit from partnerships with corporations and community-
based organizations through activities, events, and internships. The 
schools, each with their own collegiate-style theme, are: Business and 
Enterprise; Literature and Performing Arts; Science and Technology; 
Invention, Design, Engineering and Architecture; Education and 
International Studies; and Media, Film and Art.

       "West Adams Prep ushers in a new era for public schooling in Los 
Angeles-a school designed, built and managed in unprecedented 
collaboration, where the school's facilities, instructional programs 
and stakeholders all coalesce to deliver an uncompromising education to 
every child in the surrounding neighborhood," said MLA President Mike 
McGalliard

       The school already enjoys a network of support from the 
surrounding community because of early work conducted by Dr. Edward 
Robillard and MLA site director John Holcomb. The pair conducted focus 
groups and community meetings with hundreds of stakeholders to 
determine many of the school's attributes including the name, the 
mascot, school colors and the decision to have uniforms.

       Located in the West Adams Historical District, the campus 
facilities span nearly 15-acres and offer 2,500 new seats for relief 
from overcrowding at both Los Angeles and Manual Arts high schools. The 
site includes specialized classrooms for performing arts, dance, 
fitness/aerobics, music, photography, multimedia, and science. Also on 
site are a state-of-the-art film school, a 1,200-seat theater, and an 
athletic facility with small and large gymnasiums, a swimming pool and 
playfields. 

       "West Adams Prep is a unique school with a unique design for a 
unique neighborhood," said LAUSD Chief Facilities Executive Guy Mehula. 
"Though it is certainly one of a kind in the District, the campus 
reflects innovations of our new schools construction program - 
including Small Learning Communities and facilities that are designed 
with community use in mind."

	West Adams Prep is part of the LAUSD's $20 billion school 
construction program that is on track to build 145 new schools by 2012. 
The program goals are to provide a neighborhood school on a traditional 
calendar for every student, eliminate involuntary busing, and create 
smaller, more personalized learning environments in secondary schools. 
To date, LAUSD has completed 67 new schools and 55 additions, returning 
138 schools to traditional two-semester calendars and providing 68,000 
new seats. 

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