March 14, 2017

We’re almost at the mid-point of the spring semester and the activities at GHC continue at a rapid and intense pace. I’d like to draw your attention to two important events:

This weekend’s “In the Heights” musical by Lin-Manual Miranda was exceptional. The three-show performance, which celebrates the Latino community of Washington Heights through the dancing and musical styles of hip hop and rap, was a hit with sold-out audiences and showcased the talents of our students. Visual and Performing Arts department teachers Stuart Fingeret and Sarah White worked tirelessly to put on this production.

We look forward to seeing you at our Spring Open House, which will take place on Thursday, March 23 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Open House is one more opportunity to communicate (albeit briefly) with your son/daughter’s teacher. If you desire a lengthier meeting with a teacher, please contact your son/daughter’s guidance counselor, who can assist in making arrangements.

As we reach the mid-point of this semester, our thoughts turn towards graduation and that we are once again, releasing another group of quality individuals to the world. Although it is natural for our seniors to begin contemplating their lives after Granada, as well as plan for prom and other school activities, including this Friday’s Senior Sunset. Seniors often need to be reminded that the last several months do count, academically and personally. We often hear of “senioritis,” the dreaded malaise and apathy that affects many in their last year. Continue to emphasize with your students that this semester, whether their last or not, does count, and that academic success and personal growth go hand-in-hand.

We know that student achievement begins at home. Congratulations to our Granada community!


The Dashboard is a new website that shows how local educational agencies and schools are performing on the indicators included in California’s new school accountability system. It is the next step in a series of major shifts in California K-12 schools that have raised the bar for student learning, transformed testing and placed the focus on equity for all students. Beginning on March 15 the public can access the website at The Dashboard provides information that schools can use to improve such as Academic Indicator, English Learner Progress, Chronic Absenteeism, Graduation Rate, Suspension Rate and College and Career Readiness. The rating system will be shown in a 5 x 5 color block with the highest performance indicated in blue (red-orange-yellow-green-blue) and incorporates both performance and growth in the color ranking. Parents will be able to compare schools with this new dashboard but keep in mind that higher performing schools will find it most difficult to earn a blue rating due to the slower growth component. An overview video of the Dashboard can be accessed at


All parents are invited to an informal meeting to introduce the Dashboard, discuss the GHC results and how this data will be utilized in development of the GHC Local Control Accountability Plan on Wednesday, April 26, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. in Rawley Hall. For more information contact Judie Baumwirt at


Students with mild, moderate and severe learning disabilities won an art contest for the second year in a row celebrating the Iditarod, a strenuous 1,000-mile race across Alaska. The winning art pieces were featured as centerpieces in the annual Musher’s Banquet in Anchorage, Alaska on March 2, 2017. The Iditarod, which requires mushers to lead their dog teams over mountain ranges and other rugged terrain in sub-zero temperatures, has been a constant source of inspiration and motivation for students in this class at Granada Hills Charter High School.

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In February, students traveled to UCLA for the “Engineering Day for Girls” field trip and heard from Dr. Jayathi Y. Murthy, who is dean of the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science. A panel of current female engineering students answered questions about their first-hand experiences. Emily, GHC Class of 2015 and current UCLA student, participated in the panel and was able to share her experiences as a member of the Highlander family. After the presentations, the group toured a variety of research labs and interacted with students from different engineering clubs and organizations.

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In a celebration with the robotics team and John Lee, Los Angeles City Council District 12 Chief-of-Staff, Toll Brothers catered pizza in K2 and awarded the Robotics team a $5,000 check for their competition season. “We are impressed with your collective brain power,” said Frank Su, Vice President of Toll Brothers, “We are always interested in investing in our community and smart minds. We are happy to help.” Toll Brothers also donated $1,100 to support the Annual Fund for a variety of programs on campus. Los Angeles City Council District 12 supports the school by providing transportation for robotics and other student groups.


Newly-elected Assemblyman Dante Acosta visited campus to tour the Career Technical Education (CTE) classrooms and learn about Granada Hills Charter’s CTE programs and plans for the future. Impressed with the program, he said, “Career Technical Education programs like the one at Granada Hills Charter offer students a new path and new opportunities to achieve a fulfilling and successful career. What is being done in these programs is such a vital service to our state, our community, but most importantly it is a service to every one of our children. With CTE training you are providing equal opportunity and empowerment to achieve their dreams and build for themselves the lives they hope for.”


Thursday, March 23 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Open House is your chance to learn about our instructional programs, meet teachers, sign up for Home Access Center, join the various student or parent groups, and enjoy live entertainment and concessions. Friday, March 24 is a Minimum Day.

For more information, click here.


Congratulations to the boys and girls soccer teams for claiming the top prize as city champions! Both teams advanced to the semifinals but came up short in their bid for state championship. A special thanks to our two coaches, Fabian Sandoval and David Huish, and the players whose hard work, talent and dedication propelled the teams to victory. Success is shared by our cheering parents and study body who supported us at every game of this exciting season. This is the boys team’s first city championship and the girls team’s second city championship.


Erin Milner, GHC Class of 2003, recently received her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley and moved to Washington, D.C. for a job with the federal government to help improve nutrition for vulnerable children in Africa. She discovered her passion for global environmental issues as a junior in high school. We caught up with her to learn more about how her path took her from Granada to across the globe, making the world a better place along the way.

Did you have a memorable class at Granada?
My path was largely influenced by Ms. Crawford’s AP Environmental Science course that I took my junior year (2001-02). I remember one day learning about the Peace Corps and environmental conditions and food systems in Africa and low-income countries, which really struck me. It made me want to learn more about life in those places and improve inequities that I wasn’t previously aware of.

What University did you attend and what was your degree in? Why did you pick those?
I attended UC Irvine for my BA degree in Environmental Science and Public Health followed by my M.S. and Ph.D. at UC Berkeley in Environmental Health Sciences and Nutrition. I chose to earn my degrees in this field because I was motivated to sustainably improve health globally and these areas of study were interesting to me.

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If you know alumni who would like to be featured in “Where are they now?” email


High school can be a trying time for students AND their parents. We are offering free workshops to help you answer tough questions on parenting teenagers at two convenient locations – English classes on our campus and Korean classes close to downtown Los Angeles. For more information and to RSVP visit


Beginning last Fall, the Los Angeles Unified School District (“LAUSD”) Facilities Services Division (“FSD”) staff conducted several School Accountability Report Card Inspections of the Granada Hills Charter campus. On March 3, 2017 the FSD informed us of several violations concerning modifications to the campus that were made prior to and after our independent charter conversion in 2003. The District’s rationale for the violations is that the post-charter conversion alterations that we undertook, although completed by licensed, professional contractors, were not performed in compliance with our Sole Occupant Agreement or SOA. The SOA governs our use of the campus, and was executed by Granada Hills Charter and LAUSD in February 2014 as part of our last charter renewal. I am not able to address the rationale for the alterations that LAUSD made prior to our 2003 charter conversion. For more information click here.


The South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) would like to notify all GHC parents and guardians that the Orchard Supply Company at 18060 Chatsworth Street, Granada Hills, has applied for a permit to construct/operate to install an emergency combustion engine driving an emergency generator. To download the full permit notice, click here.


An Independent Public School Since 2003
10535 Zelzah Ave., Granada Hills, CA  91344 | Phone: 818.360.2361 | Fax: 818.363.9504