Mayor Villaraigosa, Superintendent Stay Beyond the Bell with LA's BEST

LA's BEST After School Enrichment Program kicked off its 20th year of operation with academic and enrichment activities that keep 28,000 children citywide safe and supervised after school.

September 3, 2008

LOS ANGELES —  September 3, 2008 — 

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, joined by LAUSD Superintendent David Brewer and LAUSD Board Member Tamar Galatzan (District 3), greeted students and staff and participated in after school activities on a tour of the LA's BEST program at Kittridge Street School on the first day of sch ool, Wednesday, September 3, 2008. Visitors observed and participated with kindergarten students in a mask making art activity and in a math activity with fourth graders.

The guests were greeted by Kittridge Street Elementary School Principal Joan Blair, and LA’s BEST students and staff who were eager to show off their program and the improvements they have made academically in recent years. In the past year alone, the percentage of students at Kittridge achieving Proficient and Advanced on the California Standards Test has increased by 12 percent.

"Raising student achievement begins in the classroom, but it's the after-school activities that tie learning together for our youngest students," Mayor Villaraigosa said.

“The partnership between Kittridge Elementary school and the LA’s BEST program has helped the students of Kittridge by supporting the academic program and promoting good citizenship by providing a safe and nurturing after school environment for learning and productive socialization,” Principal Blair said.

Each year, LA’s BEST aims to expand the enrollment at each of the 180 LA’s BEST school sites to include up to 30 percent of the school population. At the beginning of this school year, the LA’s BEST program is serving more than 28,000 children across Los Angeles.

About LA's BEST

LA's BEST - Better Educated Students for Tomorrow - is a nationally recognized after school education, enrichment and recreation program serving more than 28,000 children with the greatest needs and fewest resources throughout the City of Los Angeles. LA's BEST After School Enrichment Program provides a safe haven for children ages 5 to 12 at 180 elementary school sites each day during the critical hours after school - at no cost to parents. Established in 1988, LA's BEST is a partnership including the City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Unified School District and the private sector. For more information, please visit

About Kittridge Street Elementary School

Kittridge Street Elementary School, nestled in the neighborhood of Valley Glen in the San Fernando Valley, opened in 1957. Kittridge is a Title I school with a student population that is 80% Hispanic, 13% White and 3% African American, and approximately 90% are second language learners. Kittridge's API has steadily increased over the past three years, from 627 in 2005 to 742 in 2008. As a Program Improvement 3 School in hold status, they expect to meet all of their AYP's and to be exited from Program Improvement status based on this year's test scores. Kittridge Elementary has been an LA’s BEST school site since 2000.