Grant High School (Los Angeles)

For schools of the same name, see Grant High School.

Coordinates: 34°10′46″N 118°24′57″W / 34.179332°N 118.415773°W / 34.179332; -118.415773

Ulysses S. Grant High School

What we are to be we are now becoming.
13000 Oxnard Street, Valley Glen, California 91401
Type Public
Established 1959
School district Los Angeles Unified School District
Dean Jon Mannochio, Devin Ellison
Principal Pamela Damonte
Grades 9-12
Color(s) Brown, Orange, White               
Mascot Lancer
Newspaper The Odyssey
Yearbook The Shield

Ulysses S. Grant High School is a secondary school in the Valley Glen neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, in the east-central San Fernando Valley. It is located adjacent to Los Angeles Valley College.

It is part of District 2 of the Los Angeles Unified School District. The school serves several areas, including Valley Glen, much of Sherman Oaks, and sections of both Van Nuys and North Hollywood.[1]

Its mascot is the Lancer and the school colors are brown, orange, and white. The school motto is: "What we are to be we are now becoming."

The school newspaper is called the "Odyssey" in reference to President Grant's first name - Ulysses - the main character in Homer's epic "The Odyssey." There is a school tradition that, on or about April 1, a satirical issue is distributed called the "Oddity" and it contains comical and irreverent articles. Past "articles" have been about finals being canceled, the school being closed, rats infesting the cafeteria, clothing optional P.E. classes, etc.

The school yearbook is called the "Shield" .

Connected to Grant High School is a communications/technology magnet which emphasizes smaller class sizes and communications technology electives including film/video production, broadcast journalism, computer technology, graphic communications, and performing arts.[2]


Grant opened as a high school in September, 1959. Its first students were baby boomers moving into suburban houses in the San Fernando Valley.[3] Reut Cohen of Neon Tommy, a publication of the Annenberg Media Center, wrote that in the 1970s and 1980s the school was "regarded as an excellent public institution."[4]

In the 1990s there was an ethnic tension between the Armenian students and the Hispanic and Latino students. An LAUSD official stated a belief that the tension may have originated from earthquake relief drives held in the 1980s which were meant to benefit Armenia and Mexico.[5] Cohen stated that the ethnic tensions were a major factor in the decline of Grant's reputation in the 1990s.[4]

The tensions exploded on Thursday, October 21, 1999 when the a fight between an Armenian girl and a Latina girl turned into a fight between 200 students. The fight resulted in 40 students being detained and minor injuries being inflicted on 10 students, some teachers, and a maintenance worker. No serious injuries occurred.[5] In January 2000 the students signed a "peace treaty" to prevent future fighting. By February banners were erected which promoted peace.[6] By October of that year there were discussion programs aimed at further reducing tension.[7]

A fight involving almost 500 students occurred on Tuesday March 8, 2005.[8]

In 2006, Grant was relieved of many 9th and 10th graders by the opening of East Valley High School, which planned to phase in grades 11 and 12 in the following two years.[9]

Ethnic tensions reappeared during an Armenian remembrance event in 2008.[4]

Grant was featured in Newsweek magazines April 17, 2008 cover story about 25 years of divorce in America; Grant was chosen as a prototypical suburban high school and the article featured members of the class of 1982 and their marital stories.[3]

Academic and artistic feats

In the late 1960s, a local L.A. television station aired a game show called It's Academic, which featured competition among L.A. area high schools in a quiz show format. Grant won the competition both years that the show was on the air.

In 1977, students at Grant achieved a listing in the Guinness Book of World Records for playing the world's largest musical chairs game (record since broken).

Grant students are also credited with helping to paint one of the largest murals in the world—the Great Wall of Los Angeles—in the Tujunga Wash that lies on the border of the campus. The mural, which depicts southwestern U.S. history from prehistoric times, is 2,754 feet (840 m) making it the longest mural in the United States.

Grant's award-winning Academic Decathlon team placed 11th out of 64 schools in the 2009 regional competition.


In the mid-20th century the school used a tracking program which resulted in many Jewish students, who anticipated attending colleges and universities, together. Deborah Dash Moore, the author of To the Golden Cities: Pursuing the American Jewish Dream in Miami and L.A., wrote that this made the presence of these Jewish students "more visible than numbers alone would warrant."[10] Grant offered Modern Hebrew classes.[10]

In 1978 the school had over 3,000 students.[3] In 1999 the school had 3,400 students,[5] and there were 3,300 students in 2000. That year the student body was 51% Hispanic and Latino, 36% White, 6% African-American, 4% Asian, and 2% Filipino. Most of the Hispanic and Latino students were Mexican American and many of the Whites were Armenian American.[7] As of 2000 the students originated from 48 countries.[11] As of 2010 65% of the students were Hispanic and Latino, and 20% were Armenian.[12]

The Hispanic and Latino students, as of 2015, often originated from families who migrated from Mexico and Central America and were born in the United States; they prefer to identify by their countries of origin even though they are grouped together as Hispanic and Latino. The Armenian students, as of 2015, originated in a wave of immigration from Armenia and the former Soviet Union that began in the early 1990s.[13]


In 2000 the socialization point for the Latinos was the south side of the school's quad, while the Armenians socialized in the north side. As of that year, fights between Armenian and Latino students often occurred in October. As of 2000 the common belief at the school was that Latinos wore baggy clothes while Armenians dressed more conservatively.[7]

Film program

Grant has a film program for students either considering a career in that field or with a general interest. Students that have completed his program have earned numerous awards such as certificates, CINE Golden Eagles, trophies and other means of recognition. The students are allowed to freely create stories of their own.

Los Angeles city athletic championships

Notable Alumni

Use as a filming location

Grant High School has been featured in a number of film and television productions. This is due to the long strip of road (known as "Lancer Lane") that runs between the eastern boundary of the school and a scenic greenbelt, walking path, and the Tujunga Wash, and the availability of ample parking—combined with the ease of moving equipment around. Grant High School is also recognized as among the best high schools in the country for its film/video productions made by students of the communications/technology magnet.

Among the professional film and television productions that have utilized Grant High School as a filming location:

Many music videos including:


  2. Magnet Program
  3. 1 2 3 Jefferson, David J. "The Divorce Generation Grows Up." Newsweek. April 12, 2008. Retrieved on January 4, 2016.
  4. 1 2 3 Cohen, Reut. "Grant High's Novinger Uses Empathy To Help Keep The Peace" (Archive). Neon Tommy, Annenberg Media Center. January 6, 2011. Retrieved on January 5, 2016.
  5. 1 2 3 Sauerwein, Kristina. "Ethnic Tension Blamed for Grant High Melee." Los Angeles Times. October 23, 1999. Retrieved on January 4, 2016.
  6. Briggs, Johnathon E. "Banners Seek to Prevent Rips in the Social Fabric." Los Angeles Times. February 11, 2000. Retrieved on January 4, 2016.
  7. 1 2 3 MacGregor, Hillary E. "Program Seeks to Reduce Latino-Armenian Tensions at School." Los Angeles Times. October 22, 2000. Retrieved on January 4, 2016.
  8. "Hundreds of Students in Brawl at Grant High." Los Angeles Times. March 9, 2005. Retrieved on January 5, 2016.
  9. Project Details
  10. 1 2 Moore, Deborah Dash. To the Golden Cities: Pursuing the American Jewish Dream in Miami and L.A.. Harvard University Press, 1994. ISBN 0674893050, 9780674893054. p. 86.
  11. Peabody, Zanto. "Beyond the Millennium." Los Angeles Times. June 23, 2000. Retrieved on January 5, 2016.
  12. Aghajanian, Liana. "Culture Clash: Armenian and Hispanic Relations in the Past, Present and Future" (Archive). Ararat Quarterly. July 6, 2010. Retrieved on January 5, 2016.
  13. Sorrells, Kathryn. Intercultural Communication: Globalization and Social Justice. SAGE Publications, September 8, 2015. ISBN 1483313379, 9781483313375. p. 220.
  14. Barry Carl - Biography
  16. http://www.brokenwheelranch/bobbydiamond.htm
  17. SHO_062907.indd
  18. Mickey Mouse Club Cast: Cheryl Holdridge
  19. Freckles and Filigree - TIME
  20. Danny Nucci Biography - Yahoo! Movies
  21. 1 2 CD Baby: VARIOUS ARTISTS: Evil Fuzz - Davie Allan Tribute
  24. 1 2 3 Jeffrey Porcaro, Toto's Drummer, And a Studio Musician, 38, Dies - New York Times
  25. - Mike Porcaro Fan Side - Rock / Fusion / Jazz -
  26. 1971 Baseball Draft - Round 2
  27. System Of A Down
  28. 1 2 TAXI A&R Interview: Lonn Friend, Arista Records
  29. Roger Cobb's House - The Official Site for the House Movies
  30. IMDB Awards
  32. "Never Enough..." The Official Micky Dolenz Website
  33. Mike Curb - Biography
  34. Post, Mike Biography: Contemporary Musicians
  35. Bringing Glory To The Valley : Watts Tops List Of Area Stars Who Left A Mark. - Free Online Library
  36. Moosie Drier - Biography
  39. 1966 Houston Astros Baseball Draft
  40. CNN Transcript - Larry King Live: Tom Selleck Discusses 'Running Mates' - July 21, 2000
  41. IMDB credits database
  42. 1 2 3 4 The Shield 2008-09
  43. Off the Minnesota Strip (TV 1980) - IMDb

External links

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