The show's creator Lauren Iungerich researches the show by going back to her old high school. She says, "every year I go to my old high school and I talk to teenagers about their lives and the things are going through to stay engaged and to stay true to our show and ensuring that we are hitting the right notes".
The high school on the show is called "Palos Hills High School" (Home of the Titans, colors are blue/gold). Until 1991, there were 3 high schools in Palos Verdes - Miraleste High School (Home of the Marauders, colors were maroon/gold), Palos Verdes High School (Home of the Sea Kings, colors were black/red) and Rolling Hills High School (Home of the Titans, colors were blue/gold). Due to district closures, the 3 high schools were consolidated into one high school, located on the Rolling Hills High School campus. The new school was renamed Palos Verdes Peninsula High School (home of the Panthers, colors are black/gold). In 2002, climbing enrollments and overcrowding at Palos Verdes Peninsula High School led the district to reopen Palos Verdes High School. The show uses the mascot (Titans) and colors (Blue/Gold) of the former Rolling Hills High School.