Los Angeles High School honored one of its most famous graduates on April 14 as part of an open house showcase to highlight the school’s academics and extra curricular activities.
“In the past, our open house events were modeled as a kind of parent-teacher conference; but this year, our principal had the great idea to allow visitors to explore the campus and see all the good things that go on here,” said Joyce Kleifield, executive director of the Harrison Trust, a sponsor of the event.
The evening’s highlight was a ceremony in the school’s remodeled Ray Bradbury Library, where a mural was unveiled in honor of its namesake, author Ray Bradbury, who attended Los Angeles High in the 1930s.
“This has been an amazing experience,” said principal Dr. Helena Yoon-Fontamillas as she welcomed guests inside the standing-room-only library.
Special guests included Susan Nixon and Ramona Ostergren, two of Bradbury’s daughters, and Dr. George McKenna, LAUSD board member for District 1.
“I want to compliment these efforts,” said McKenna, who reminded the audience that the library is a good place to lose yourself: “Reading can take away your malaise and lift you up,” he said.
Bradbury’s daughter, Susan Nixon, thanked the mural’s creator Richard Wyatt and all the students who helped execute his vision. “L.A. High School was so important to my dad,” she said; “he would talk about it often.” Nixon broke into tears as she explained how proud he would be to be honored this way.
Science fair and more
On display in Memorial Hall during the event were this year’s student science fair submissions.
Dozens of students worked for nearly two semesters on the projects, said Science Department chair Clay Estep: “The students worked alone, with only guidance from us, to develop a project and think like a scientist by predicting a hypothesis and then testing it.”
Among the many interesting projects was one by students Sean Trigueros and Ashley Rezo—who were both dressed sharply in dark suits—and who were eager to discuss it, “A Chicken’s Life: Caged vs. Yard.” For research, the students raised four chickens from eggs, two inside a cage and two cage-free (in their yards). Using a number of metrics, they found the caged chickens were more anxious and less friendly as well as smaller in size and weight. Their conclusion: buy cage free.
Performances by the band and dance team in the school’s quad kept guests entertained while they enjoyed food and drinks, and the drama club’s impressive performance of “A Village Fable” by playwright James Still showcased budding young talent.
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