About Us » LACES History

LACES History

History and Background of LACES

The Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies (LACES) came into existence in September 1977, as a new component of the court-ordered voluntary integration program designed to address the five harms of racial isolation:  low academic achievement, overcrowded conditions, interracial hostility and intolerance, lack of access to post-secondary opportunities, and low self-esteem.  We recently celebrated our 40th Year with a homecoming weekend of activities for our current and past families, students, staff, and community.  

LACES became the first magnet school in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD).  As part of the student integration mandates, the student population was set at roughly 70% combined minority and 30% white.  Articles were published in Spotlight, the District’s newsletter, seeking high caliber teachers interested in working in an innovative, exciting, integrated setting.  Flyers were sent to all schools in the District looking for students who wanted to enroll.

Initially, LACES started as a 4th through 8th grade span-school with a population of approximately 600 students from throughout the city.  With each new year, another grade level was added until we became a 4th through 12th grade school.  

Our first location was on the site of the Wilshire Boulevard Temple.  After one year, due to earthquake damage, the school site was moved onto the campus of Hamilton High School.  To accommodate increasing enrollment, LACES was relocated two years later to the corner of Pico and Arlington.  In 1987, the school was again relocated to the former Pasteur Junior High School campus, now called the LACES – Pasteur Site, which is located west of mid-city in a neighborhood of single-family dwellings.   In 1991, the school took in the last fourth grade class, deciding that the span of the school would now be grades 6 through 12, in keeping with the middle school/high school format. We have been at this location ever since.

We have a history of excellence in preparing our students to be successful beyond our walls. Although we are both a college and career preparatory institution, we pride ourselves the rigorous programs we provide that make our students most competitive for college acceptance.