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GreatSchools Rating

Palm Valley Elementary School

Public | PK-5 | 821 students

Eight consectutive years of the highest Excelling/A state designation!

 
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
Based on 18 ratings
2012:
Based on 2 ratings
2011:
Based on 4 ratings

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57 reviews of this school


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Posted December 2, 2013

Palm Valley is an exemplary school with amazing parents. It is truly an Arizona school that competes with east coast schools. There is a long wait list for variances and the principal is very welcoming.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 26, 2013

As a member of the PTO for the last few years, as soon as I can, we are out of this school. The principal and her PTO cronies are passive-aggressive and want everyone to conform to them. Are we here to raise money or to support and educate children? I actually heard the principal say she can work with the variance contract because it was vague enough. Don't know the details but that doesn't sound good to me as an outsider. I also found out that they don't allow non-conformists to stay on the board. Just ask former and present board members. I believe in the public school system but something went wrong with this school. Someone needs to take the power away from the PTO and the principal. It's getting out of hand for this so-called "public/charter" school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 23, 2013

Palm Valley is an exceptional school! I know because my daughter attends third grade here and has been at this school since preschool. The academic experience is consistently A+++, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Not only is the academic quality the norm, but equally important is the fact that teachers truly care. With students as their priority, always, teachers also display a vibe about their profession unlike any I have ever witnessed, and perhaps that is what keeps me very much pleased with my child's educational experience here.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted September 21, 2013

PVE is an absolutely amazing school. I am very impressed with the education my children have received over the past two years. The teachers have always gone out of their way to ensure that their students come first and have amazing communication. The principal and the staff excel at making everyone feel comfortable and welcomed. I often volunteer in my children's classrooms as well as at school functions and while I do enjoy seeing what they are doing in the classroom and being able to help out, I feel that the PTO is unfriendly and very clique-ish. I understand that they have all worked together for a long time and have become friends however I thought the PTO was there to support the school- not for socialization during school hours and certainly not to exclude those that want to help. While I feel that the school is amazing and that the leadership by both the teachers and the administration is stellar, I frown upon the leadership of the PTO.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 16, 2013

I have been around this school for awhile now and my children have really enjoyed their experience there. They have had excellent teachers who truly care about them educationally, socially, and work hard to help them develop new interests. This school has some very hard working and dedicated staff and volunteers who make all of this possible. I have had other school experiences where this was not the case. Unfortunately I feel that there is a concern that needs to be addressed by someone, in that the PTO president deems it appropriate to get defensive and blast individuals for expressing their opinion. Keep in mind there are 54 posts viewable including 1 by the PTO president and 2 that express an opinion that was not liked by the president. As the leader in such an important role to the school it would be great to know that everyone's opinion would be accepted and evaluated. The post below indicates to me that this president overreacts and is more concerned with the perception of her, than actually taking these opinions seriously. I normally don't get involved in this stuff however felt compelled to say something so readers know that this overreaction is not how the school is.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 11, 2013

We have a first grader this year at PVE and this is our 2nd year at this amazing school. My son's kinder and first grade teachers have been excellent and no words could do justice to what they have done for our son. I have worked as a teacher in several different schools in several different parts of the country, and I can confidently say that PVE is a vibrant, student-centered, academically-focused, stimulating and emotionally nurturing school. PVE focuses on educating and growing the WHOLE child in all areas, from character and fine arts to "the basics". Mrs. Pearson is exactly what one would dream up for their child's principal - positive, supportive, understanding, and committed to excellence! We truly consider the teachers (kinder, first grade, art, music, PE) administrator, and staff as wonderful blessings to our son and our family. Our family was brand new to the school and to the community last school year. We were welcomed with open arms and made to feel very much a part of this school community by the PTO. The PTO at PVE directly supports so many programs that enhance the day to day operations of the school. I am so proud and thankful my son is a Thunderbird!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 10, 2013

I have 2 boys that are at Palm Valley. They both have had good teachers and the parent involvement is great. Also, many fun family nights are available to attend throughout the school year.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 9, 2013

I am the president of the PTO that has been reviewed in the comments over the past few weeks. I find it unproductive that people are willing to complain anonymously on a website about a group of hard working VOLUNTEERS who has raised over $75,000 in the past two years and provided thousands of volunteer hours. The fact of the matter is, parent involvement is a key indicator to student success and I want to make sure I do all I can to help my children's school be successful. I also train the volunteers for our campus and end each presentation with an invitation to join our organization and get involved. Is it natural that those who show up and do most of the work become friends? You bet. Are there more and more tasks that the school staff has asked us to be involved in because of lack of time and budget cuts? Again, guilty as charged. Are we perfect? No. But making anonymous accusations isn't going to change anything. If you really want to see a change in the PTO leadership, then get involved. Every position on the board has been elected unopposed in the past 4 years. I would love to see greater participation- come to the meetings, join the committees, run for the board.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 3, 2013

There are so many wonderful things to say about PVE. I have had children in this school for a number of years and I can not say enough wonderful things about the principal of the school. The front office staff is top notch and they know every child in the school by name, and many of the parents, too! The teachers in the school are, for the great majority, the best in the business (we have been here for 2nd through 5th and ALL of our teachers have been great). The PE coach is one of the greatest assets of this school. I will be honest in my review, and share that the PTO at the school has become a distraction and a purveyor of politics. I believe that the ladies that participate in the PTO have the best intentions, but they have been given way too much leeway over the past few years. The principal needs to take some of these activities back under control and needs to demand that the PTO become a part of a national organization for greater oversight and transparency in their actions. A huge majority of parents do not feel welcome to spend time volunteering because they are not in the right "circle" to be welcome and I have seen that firsthand, especially the past 2 years.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 27, 2013

They could solve the traditional academy questions by posting the scores of the children admitted to the program. It would be sad if a PTO child (Or any child) was admitted when they had scores less than another candidate. I think the Faculty and Principal are great at the school. The PTO ranks somewhere just behind the food selections in the cafeteria, and playground equipment in my mind. Their influence upon my child's education is minor.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 8, 2013

I have been an active PTO member since 2009, have 3 children at PVE and we are very happy. I believe our principal genuinely cares for the well being of every single child. Teachers really care about the success of the kids. Our PTO is outstanding and has done many amazing things that benefit the children at PVE and all parents are given the opportunity to be involved in our school and part of the PTO. My kids all have IEP's and I've never had any issues in communicating my concerns to the teacher, principal or therapists. There may be more options in our area but PVE is the right choice for our family!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 8, 2013

As a parent, we all want to send our kids to a great school ! When we moved here we were renting a house in a district we knew we wouldn't send our kids to. So when the time came for kindergarten, we did our research and decided that the Palm Valley Elementary district was our Top Choice! Because we were still out of district, we submitted an application for a variance and it got approved! We couldn't have been happier! Thankfully our variance was approved for a second year and by the time the end of that school year came....we found a house we loved within the PVE district!! Both our children now attend PVE. They continue to excel and LOVE school! Everyone who we've worked with at the school have been amazing - the principal, teachers, staff and the PTO all work together to make PVE a truly "great school". In addition, the PTO provides many opportunities for families to get to know each other through monthly free family fun nights, as well as hosting several events during the first week of school to really help new parents understand what PVE is all about! I would highly recommend this school to anyone looking for a school with a real "community feel."
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 6, 2013

Palm Valley has an amazing PTO that is willing to help out where ever, whenever. These ladies do it all with a smile and no pay. They welcomed me and my family into PVE when we knew not a single soul on campus. Mrs. Pearson (principal) is always willing to make time for a parent with any concerns. Recently PVE raised the funds to provided a Traditional Academy on campus. EVERY parent was given the opportunity to apply, and the DISTRICT reviewed those applications and placed students based on their performance in said classes. No student was accepted or denied into the Traditional Academy because of their parent, whether they are PTO or faculty.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 6, 2013

We came to Palm Valley from a private school. I used Great Schools along with other state websites to determine what public school I wanted my children to attend. Even so, I was still very nervous about the large class sizes & the possibility that my children may be bored with a less rigorous curriculum. However, I have been blown away by the teachers, staff, & principal. My children have continued to be challenged in a more diverse classroom with limited resources and I am proud to send my children to Palm Valley Elementary. There is a very strong sense of community within the school and a great deal of parent involvement. I'm impressed in every way and this year they are also adding electives. While I admit the class sizes seem too large, the teachers are well equipped to help each student excel. It is an outstanding school in the top district in Maricopa County. I wouldn't send my children anywhere else, even if private school was an option.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 6, 2013

This school is awesome. First, let me say about some of the other comments I have read, I am not on the PTO board but I choose to be active in my children's life at school. Yes, the principal knows me. Yes, the office staff knows me. Yes, the teachers recognize me. However, this is largely due to the fact that I make it a point for them to know me and for me to know them. This is the first year the traditional academy has been implemented so I can't speak on it's behalf, but I will say, my daughter learned how to read full books by the end of her kindergarten year at this school and that is in spite of a large class size and her having an IEP. The PTO board is amazing and puts the teachers and staff first; if that awards them special treatment... fantastic! I have not had any communication trouble with teachers since being at this school, if there were a problem, they are all quick to respond to emails and messages but let's remember that these teachers are incredibly busying being a teacher and (in a lot of ways) a parent to all of these kids. Parents are welcomed volunteers and if there is a problem, I would encourage those to spend a day observing their child's class. I love PVE
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 6, 2013

Nine years ago when we bought in the PVE boundaries, we were childless and certainly did not have schools on the brain. I consider it fate that we ended up in the PERFECT school for our family. Being a first time mom is super scary - is it safe? Do they excel in education? Will they care for my little one while they are away from me? I can say without hesitation YES, YES, YES! PVE has exceeded any expectations we had when we began this journey. I now have a 2nd grader and twin kindergarten children at PVE. 2 are in the new traditional program and the school and staff helped me make a VERY informed decision about what program was best for my older student. While he loves school and does well, there were elements of the traditional program we did not feel were a good fit for him. I LOVE that the school cared making the right decision for our son with his educational goals in mind.... PLUS.... you will never find a more dedicated PTO who serves the parents as much as they serve the students!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 12, 2013

This school is okay overall. But I am very disappointed because the women that lead the PTO get every possible break for their children. All of their kids recently were "selected" to participate in the Traditional Academy. This seems ridiculous. Special programs in a publlic school should be open to all students not a select few! The Principal is also very "accomadating" to this group of women!! They can get into the school without signing in, they come and go as they please!! Rules should apply to all not just a some parents. I am very disappointed in the unfair treatment of all parents. This school is great- IF you are a member of the PTO!! Then your child will get into all programs/ special activities!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 10, 2013

I was excited that my son was starting his Kindergarten year here. Awesome school, lots of parent involvement, great test schools. Unfortunately this was not the experience I had. My son was crammed in a classroom with 29 other students. For children just learning a structure of a classroom and needing more one on one time, this is ridiculous. Further, communication from the his teacher was little to any. My son was getting sent home with a "score" of 0-5 each day with no information on the actual issues or obstacles he faced that day. I went to the principle to ask for help, and she helped me implement a better communication method, but this lasted for about 2 weeks then back to status-quo, no information at all. I don't blame the teacher for all this, but still, if the parents are expected to guide their students, better communication and lower student to teach ratios are a must.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 25, 2012

My Twins goto this school. We have only been here for part of this year. I know the teachers try to integrate the new students best they can but am unsure how well they are doing. I feel that my twins are getting a good education. Thier testing scores should be high. We will see how next year goes.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 21, 2012

I can't even express how wonderful I think this school is. Most importantly, I love that they are very strong academically. Based on that alone, I know that my daughter is getting a wonderful education. She is just finishing kindergarten, and her kindergarten teacher, Ms. Keen, is amazing. I don't know how she does it, but I commend her. In addition to how great the school is academically, they really encourage these kids to have good character, which is really important to me. They all recite a pledge about character along with the Pledge of Allegiance each morning, and I think that really helps to give that message to these kids. The PTO is amazing in all of their efforts at raising money not only for the school for a couple of the faculty who are battling cancer. I could just go on and on. My daughter attends with a variance right now, but we plan on buying a house within the district in the next few years so that she can finish out the remainder of her Elementary School years before moving on to Western Sky and eventually Millennium.
—Submitted by a parent


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.
Math

The state average for Math was 69% in 2013.

128 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
87%

2012

 
 
89%

2011

 
 
78%

2010

 
 
76%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 75% in 2013.

128 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
87%

2012

 
 
91%

2011

 
 
83%

2010

 
 
79%
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 65% in 2013.

137 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
83%

2012

 
 
78%

2011

 
 
83%

2010

 
 
82%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 77% in 2013.

137 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
92%

2012

 
 
86%

2011

 
 
91%

2010

 
 
88%
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 63% in 2013.

121 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
81%

2012

 
 
85%

2011

 
 
77%

2010

 
 
77%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 79% in 2013.

121 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
93%

2012

 
 
92%

2011

 
 
94%

2010

 
 
84%
Writing

The state average for Writing was 56% in 2013.

116 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
80%

2012

 
 
86%

2011

 
 
79%

2010

 
 
85%
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

  • In 2010-2011, this school was designated "Excelling".
  • In 2009-2010, this school was designated "Excelling".
  • In 2008-2009, this school was designated "Excelling".

About the tests


Arizona uses AZ LEARNS Achievement Profiles to indicate schools' overall performance each year. For elementary and middle schools, the profiles are based on current and historical aggregated AIMS results, MAP results and whether or not the school made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). For high schools, AIMS results, AYP status and graduation/dropout rates are used. Schools are identified as Excelling, Highly Performing, Performing Plus, Performing, Underperforming, Failing to Meet Academic Standards or Pending.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

GreatSchools Ratings for this school are based on 2012-2013 test results. Use the breakdown ratings below to compare types of students at this school. Learn more »


Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 56% 42%
Hispanic 25% 42%
Asian 10% 3%
Black 7% 5%
Two or more races 2% 1%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 6%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2010-2011

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Music teacher(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
ELL/ESL Coordinator
Art teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Nurse(s)
Reading specialist(s)
School psychologist
Special education coordinator
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Moderate - the school consistently offers a full program for particular special education needs
Specialized programs for specific types of special education students
  • Multiple disabilities
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs
Staff resources available to students
  • Special education coordinator
Clubs
  • Special olympics

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

School facilities
  • Computer lab

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
Performing and written arts
  • Drama
Clubs
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Moderate - the school consistently offers a full program for particular ESL/ELL needs
Staff resources available to students
  • ELL/ESL Coordinator

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • Nurse(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • School psychologist
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
Clubs
  • Girls on the run
  • Special olympics

Gifted & talented

Clubs
  • National Honor Society
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 7:40 am
School end time
  • 2:25 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 6:00 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 6:00 p.m.
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 3 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Fax number
  • (623) 935-0058

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Traditional Academy
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • None
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Moderate - the school consistently offers a full program for particular special education needs
Specialized programs for specific types of special education students
  • Multiple disabilities
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Moderate - the school consistently offers a full program for particular ESL/ELL needs

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • ELL/ESL Coordinator
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • School psychologist
  • Special education coordinator
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs
  • Remediation
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
  • Transportation provided for special education students only
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Computer lab
  • Internet access
  • Learning lab
  • Library
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
  • Playground
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • None
Girls sports
  • None

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
Performing arts
  • Drama
Media arts
  • None

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Boy scouts
  • Chess club
  • Cub scouts
  • Girl scouts
  • Girls on the run
  • National Honor Society
  • Odyssey of the Mind
  • Special olympics
  • Student council/government
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Volunteer in the classroom
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
Western Sky Middle School
Wigwam Creek Middle School
Verrado Middle School
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

2801 N. 135th Avenue
Goodyear, AZ 85338
Website: Click here
Phone: (623) 535-6400

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