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Malibu High School

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Malibu High School
Malibu High School quad.jpg
30215 Morning View Drive

United States
Coordinates34°01′28″N 118°49′37″W / 34.02442°N 118.82696°W / 34.02442; -118.82696
NCES School ID063570002173
PrincipalPatrick Miller
Faculty54.18 (FTE)[1]
Enrollment948 (2018–19)[1]
Student to teacher ratio17.50[1]
Color(s)Teal and black   [2]
MascotMako shark
NewspaperThe Current
MagazineThe Undertow
WebsiteMalibu High School

Malibu High School (MHS) is a public high school in Malibu, California. The school is one of three high schools in the Santa Monica–Malibu Unified School District and serves students in the city of Malibu and surrounding communities.


The school is located in the northwestern part of Malibu, one block from the Pacific Ocean and the famed Zuma Beach in the Malibu Park district. Its address is on Morning View Drive, made famous by the breakout album by Incubus. The school spans 35 acres (0.14 km2) (0.14 km2) of rolling hillsides between Merritt Drive to the south, Via Cabrillo Street to the north, and Harvester Road to the east. The campus is located next to Juan Cabrillo Elementary School, a public school, and Malibu Methodist Preschool & Nursery, a private pre-kindergarten school for ages 0–5.

The school is accessible via the LA Metro bus line 534.[3]


Malibu High School is on land that was originally part of Juan Cabrillo Elementary School. That campus was partitioned in 1963 to create Malibu Park Junior High School,[4] named after its surrounding region in Malibu. With no public secondary school in Malibu, upon promotion from middle school the high school students commuted two hours roundtrip to Santa Monica to attend Santa Monica High School.

In 1992, the district converted the Malibu Park Junior High School campus to its present combined middle school/high school, and allowed MHS's first freshman class to walk onto campus.[5] The State of California erroneously shows the high school established in 1993.[6] Classes were added every succeeding year, culminating in the original freshman class graduating in 1996.

The high school's first principal was Michael Matthews. Under Matthews's tenure in 2003, the school earned its designation as a California Distinguished School[7] and first achieved a national ranking as #177 in Newsweek's Top 1200 Schools in America, a ranking system based on what percentage of a school's student body takes Advanced Placement exams in any given year.[8] In 2007, MHS made the U.S. News and World Report list of the top 100 schools in the United States, ranking #98.

Malibu High School saw some controversies in the 2000s. With the rise of social media, the school was featured in a 2007 CBS News story about students posting videos of teachers on YouTube.[9] In 2008, incidents of vandalism caused a stir with racial implications.[10] Palm trees on campus were removed in 2009.[11]


For the 2007–08 school year, MHS's student composition was:[12]

  • 1,303 enrolled students; 52.9% male, 47.1% female
  • Middle school (grades 6–8) class size averages 163.7
  • High school (grades 9–12) class size averages 203.8
  • Student demographics: 0.3% American Indian or Alaska Native, 2.0% Asian, 1.1% Pacific Islander/Filipino, 9.2% Hispanic or Latino, 2.5% African American, 84.7% White, 0.2% Multiple

For the 2007–08 school year, MHS's teacher composition included:[13]

  • High school: 64 certificated teachers; 53.1% male, 46.9% female
  • High school: Certificated teacher demographics: 6.2% Hispanic or Latino, 4.7% African American, 87.5% White (non-Hispanic), 1.6% Multiple.

Environmental concerns

The Santa Monica–Malibu Unified School District had performed a polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) cleanup of the school in 2009 and 2010 with the California Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) advising.[14] In October 2013, after three teachers developed thyroid cancer, a group of teachers grew concerned that environmental contaminants at Malibu High School may be to blame; caulk tested for PCB showed levels "slightly elevated" above the regulatory limit of 50ppm in November 2013.[14][15] The three relevant government agencies, the DTSC, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) were informed and certain buildings were closed to students.

According to various documents and interviews with local residents who were present during World War II, the Malibu High School site served as a military training center during that war.[16] Upon recommendation of Hugh Kaufman, a senior EPA policy analyst, teachers approached Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) for help.[17] In February 2014, PEER attorneys wrote to the school district asking for a site assessment of the campus.[16] The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers responded in July 2014 that the school had never been a military site.[16] The District hired an environmental firm named Environ, whose initial clean up plan was criticized for allowing elevated PCB levels to remain inside classrooms for 15 years or more, for not testing caulk in all rooms built prior to 1979 and for air quality monitoring of only one year. The plan was rejected by the EPA in April 2014. Environ released a second PCB clean up plan on July 3, 2014. Two weeks later PEER published PCB test results of caulking and dirt from rooms sampled in June, and not previously tested by the District, "at thousands of times the levels previously released to the public".[18]


Malibu High School consistently ranks the highest in SAT and API scores among its district's three high schools.[19] MHS has periodically been awarded honors by various ranking authorities; As of 2007 Newsweek Magazine's Top 1200 Schools in America ranked Malibu High #184.[20] In 2007 U.S. News & World Report ranked Malibu High #98 of the top 100 schools in the country and awarded a gold medal.[21] Over fifteen Advanced Placement courses are offered at the school.

Besides regular college-preparatory, honors, and Advanced Placement courses, the school is one of a handful in California that provides extensive resources for Special Education (SpEd) students. As of July 2006, 125 SpEd students were enrolled with 26 SpEd faculty at MHS, where roughly 10% of the student body are receiving 24% of the school's instructors.[22]

Performing arts

Malibu High School has won several awards in instrumental and choral music.[23] In 2011, all four MHS choirs received "Superior" ratings (the highest rating possible).[24] In March 2014, the Malibu High School chorale choir performed at Carnegie Hall in New York. In the summer of 2016, the MHS Orchestra performed at Carnegie Hall.


The school's monthly newspaper monthly newspaper is known as The Current, and the yearbook is called Aquarius. The Inkblot, a literary magazine, was added in 2008, showcasing student stories, poetry, cartoons, and illustrations;[25] it was relaunched in 2016 as The Undertow.

Zuma Project

During the school's first several years in existence, MHS students who took tenth-grade Biology or the Honors Marine Biology elective course participated in a year-long field ecology study known as The Zuma Project. Taking advantage of the school's proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the program had students collect oceanographic and biological data as well as plankton samples every week during the academic year. The research program has been copied and used by other schools as part of the UCLA OceanGLOBE program. The project has since been discontinued.


Malibu High School athletic teams are nicknamed the Sharks, and the mascot, a grinning mako shark, was designed by an art student in the first graduating class of 1996. The school is a charter member of the Citrus Coast League, a conference within the CIF Southern Section that was established in 2018. Prior to that, Malibu was part of the Tri-County Athletic Association.[26] A study published in 2007 by the MHS Site Governance Council reported that 75% of all honors and AP enrolled students participate in the school's sports programs.[27]

In 2019, the school switched its 11-man football program to an eight-man format. As a result, the school no longer competes in the Citrus Coast League in that sport.[28]

Notable alumni

Notable faculty

In popular culture

  • Scenes from the movie Smile (2005) were shot at Malibu High School. The film was inspired by the international organization Operation Smile and portrays real-life MHS figures such as former principal Dr. Mike Matthews (played by Sean Astin). MHS hosts a student chapter of Operation Smile to help fundraise, and every year, a few students accompany Operation Smile tours.
  • Scenes from the Disney Channel Original Movie Brink! were also shot at MHS and Zuma Beach.[36][37][38]
  • The TV series 90210 showed a "Malibu High School" flag at a surf competition.
  • The school was referenced in the movie Double Take (2001) as Eddie Griffin's character's school.


  1. ^ a b c "Malibu High". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved 5 May 2020.
  2. ^ "MaxPreps High School Sports".
  3. ^ "LA Metro Home - Go Metro". Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Archived from the original on 2007-10-29.
  4. ^ Malibu High School 15th Anniversary Brochure, The Shark Fund: L. Rosenthal and Kaiser Marketing, Publisher: Kaiser Marketing and ColorGraphics 2007
  5. ^ Magruder, Melonie (6 August 2006). "High School High". Malibu Times. Retrieved 16 July 2014.
  6. ^ "California School Directory.School: Malibu High". State of California Department of Education. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  7. ^ "MHS earns California Distinguished School Award". State of California Department of Education. 2003. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  8. ^ "Newsweek fails the high school ranking test". SFExaminer. 8 May 2006. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  9. ^ "The Skinny: Tortured By YouTube".
  10. ^ "Malibu High on alert following vandalism".
  11. ^ "Malibu High School's queen palms vanish". Los Angeles Times. 12 February 2009.
  12. ^ Yu, Sai. "School Enrollment by Ethnicity - Enrollment by Ethnicity for 2007-08".
  13. ^ "Number of Teachers in California Public Schools by School".
  14. ^ a b Simpson, David Mark (22 November 2013). "PCB Levels at Malibu High Trigger EPA Involvement". The Malibu Times. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  15. ^ "Malibu High Teachers Claim School Is Making Them Sick, Causing Cancer". CBS Los Angeles.
  16. ^ a b c Sagona, Nancy (17 July 2014). "Feds Say Malibu High Not A Former Military Site". The Malibu Times. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  17. ^ David Mark Simpson; Melissa Caskey (22 January 2014). "New Firm to Handle Malibu High PCB Removal". The Malibu Times. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  18. ^ "Malibu school highly contaminated with toxic PCBs". Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility. 17 July 2014. Archived from the original on 17 June 2015. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  19. ^ "Malibu High – Reports". California Department of Education. 2012.
  20. ^ "Newsweek Top Schools 2007". Newsweek. 2007. Archived from the original on 23 May 2007.
  21. ^ "Malibu High: Best High Schools". 2007. Archived from the original on 31 October 2008. Retrieved 4 September 2017.
  22. ^ "MHS Special Education Enrollment".[permanent dead link]
  23. ^ "Music Awards". Archived from the original on 27 September 2007.
  24. ^ "Malibu High Choral Groups Bring Home Awards". 11 May 2011.
  25. ^ Malibu High School The Inkblot, 2008
  26. ^ Ledin, Loren (23 March 2017). "Releaguing plan brings opportunities and complaints". Ventura County Star. Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  27. ^ MHS Site Governance Council, SGC
  28. ^ Ledin, Loren (30 April 2019). "Channel Islands football program the big winner in next releaguing cycle". Ventura County Star. Gannett Co., Inc. Retrieved 2 May 2019.
  29. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved December 8, 2008.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  30. ^ "Home". Jesse Billauer.
  31. ^ a b "Caroline D'Amore: 5 Things to Know About 'The Hills: New Beginnings' Newbie". Us Weekly. 2021-05-12. Retrieved 2021-05-14.
  32. ^ "Gigi Hadid". CBS Interactive. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved April 5, 2014.
  33. ^ Marcus, Bennett (February 10, 2014). "Do You Know Who Gigi Hadid Is?". Vanity Fair. Archived from the original on August 21, 2015. Retrieved April 5, 2014.
  34. ^ "Jordan Wilimovsky - Bio". SwimSwam. Retrieved July 23, 2021.
  35. ^ "Dr. Louis Leithold". Archived from the original on 18 March 2006.
  36. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-11-17. Retrieved 2008-05-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  37. ^ Smurf, Robert (20 December 2007). "Brink - worm sandwich - Malibu High School" – via YouTube.
  38. ^ Smurf, Robert (20 December 2007). "Brink - Malibu High School 6/24/98" – via YouTube.

External links

This page was last edited on 24 July 2021, at 02:38
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