The Cahuenga Project

Area Description
Cahuenga Elementary School is located at 220 South Hobart Boulevard, at Second Street. The school's attendance area boundaries are, generally, Beverly Boulevard, Catalina Street, Seventh Street and Western Avenue. Surrounding communities include Hollywood to the north, Westlake to the east, Koreatown to the south and Hancock Park to the west.

The demographic makeup of the area population is reflected in the racial/ethnic composition of the school's students, as shown in the table below.
Racial/Ethnic Composition: Cahuenga Elementary School
Am. Indian Alaskan Asian Black Not Hispanic Filipino Hispanic Pacific Islander White Total Enrollment
1997-98 0.1% 24.3% 2.0% 5.1% 66.0% 0.0% 2.5% 1,168
1996-97 0.2% 22.8% 2.8% 5.9% 65.8% 0.1% 2.4% 1,182
1995-96 0.2% 24.9% 2.8% 6.6% 63.6% 0.1% 1.8% 1,163

As shown in the table, Cahuenga's enrollment is 1,168 students. However, another 1,600 students live within Cahuenga's attendance area who must be bused to other locations each day because the school does not have space for them. The annual cost for busing each student is approximately $1,100.

To accommodate as many students as possible in its limited facilities, Cahuenga operates on a Concept 6 year-round calendar. This calendar maximizes the number of students housed on a campus by decreasing the number of instructional days in a school year and increasing the instructional minutes each day.

School Program
The proposed program for the new elementary school to relieve Cahuenga includes the following:

  • 4 kindergarten classrooms
  • 34 general classrooms (grades 1-5)
  • 6 Special Education classrooms

Cahuenga Elementary NeighborhoodWhat We Know About Our Neighborhood

    1) This is the most ethnically diverse and densely populated area of Los Angeles.

    2) Tension exists between the need for both affordable housing and the need for new schools.

    3) Population is increasing which translates to increased student population.

    4) Different areas are zoned for different densities of housing.

    5) Single-family housing exists in and around the existing Cahuenga School.

    6) Multi-family housing covers the middle of the area.

    7) Commercial areas exist at the periphery of the area, mostly along the larger streets of Western, Wilshire, Beverly and Vermont.

    8) There are four major metro stops at the corners of the area at the large streets mentioned above.

    9) In general, smaller buildings are in the middle of the area and get bigger as you get to the four main streets mentioned above.

    10) The community resources that we found are concentrated at the periphery of the area around the main streets.

    Click here to see the neighborhood zoning configuration map.

What Kind of Schools We Want

    1) We want educational excellence for our children first and foremost!

    2) We want varying small school sizes of 300 -500 students.

    3) We want small school sites to be dispersed throughout the diverse community.

    4) We want close distances from our homes to the new schools, for safety and convenience.

    5) We want the schools to become community learning centers that are not isolated from the community.

    6) We want to minimize residential displacement when we build these new schools.

    7) We want our schools to develop joint-use programs with other community bodies.

    8) We want the building of these new schools to become catalysts in building up our community amenities.

    9) The potential for funding from parks being proposed could impact our community and should be explored.

    10) In the best of all worlds, we want eight (8) small schools of roughly 400 students. These would fit well into the kind of sites that are available that are about two (2) acres in size.

    11) The existing Cahuenga School will have about 800 students at two small schools of 400 students each.

    12) There will be room for roughly 3200 students. Six new small schools and two small schools at the existing Cahuenga School.

    13) We realize that we might not get exactly what we want. The LAUSD has a building budget. Some sites might have to be eliminated, once more data is gathered.

Cahuenga ElementaryWhat Kind of Sites We Want
The following site criteria were used in picking possible sites:

    1) EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE for our children

    2) Proximity to student homes, student safety

    3) Schools as community learning centers

    4) Minimize residential displacement

    5) Joint-use programs with community bodies

    6) Build-up community amenities

    7) Become catalyst for improvement