Welcome to HTLA’s website. My name is Mathew McClenahan. I am honored to serve as the principal of what I believe is the best school in the San Fernando Valley. I started working here in 2002, before our current building was built. As the second teacher hired, I have literally been here since the beginning. I am proud of the work we have done over the years. The students and families we have worked with have gone on to do amazing things. It is rewarding to play a small part in the development of our students’ lives.
HTLA is not like other schools. We are a college prep school that aims to use 21st century technology to help aid our students’ education. We are not a tech only school. Yes, we do a lot of math and science here, but we work to develop the whole child. There is no way to know exactly what students want to do after high school, so we try to prepare them for whatever that may be.
The faculty and staff work hard to build a connection with each and every student. We know this is one of the primary determinants of success in high school. We want students to stretch themselves academically. Building a relationship of trust and caring helps our students succeed and our teachers to be willing to dream even bigger. We are proud of our CA Golden Ribbon Award. This was given not for our academic achievements, which are our outstanding, but for our efforts to build a culture of caring in all we do.
I am excited for the future of our school and hope you want to be a part of it. I am not going to hide the fact that this is a tough school. Rigor is one of the most used terms as we discuss the development of new projects or new courses. But this is not a school that exists only for geniuses. HTLA is a school for students who want to improve. It is for students who are willing to try. It is for students who are willing to trust that we are here to help. I believe HTLA is exactly the school the San Fernando Valley needs. We have been here for seventeen years. I am have been here for all of that. I am looking forward to the next seventeen and all we can achieve together.