This is a science school, but it truly feels magical. The school combines the best elements of a startup, and traditional and progressive educational models with a fantastic faculty and staff. The bright, happy, and enthusiastic children who attend it are matched by an equally wonderful parent community. Social responsibly and emotional intelligence are tackled with as much consideration as the academics, which are outstanding.
This is the school you wished you could have gone to. It is a joy to send my child here each day.
My son had to advocate hard to do the science project he wanted to do, rather than just picking one out randomly off the internet. The teacher laid down some tough (but attainable) parameters, and my son was able to present and develop a project that he believed in and that also met the scientific standards the teacher needed to uphold. The whole process was one of deep learning for my son. My son put up a good fight and was able to explore on his own terms. The teacher really raised the bar for him in the process.
For middle school, AVS offers a perfect balance of experiential and foundational learning. We came to the school from a great public school and have been deeply satisfied with the school's curriculum, its intimacy between student and staff/teachers and staff/teachers and parents, and the ease with which our son found his way socially.
My child's teachers are excellent and effective. During parent teacher conferences I was surprised at how well they knew my child and the insight they have into his strengths/weaknesses. My child is growing in every subject, even math, where he is so strong that we feared he would be bored for the first few years of school.
The school has school-wide engineering challenges that encourage kids to work on open ended projects where repeated failure is not only part of the process but actually celebrated (as a necessary part of growth). My own child has developed more of a growth mindset since starting at AVS. I feel like the teachers pushed some magic button that made my child willing to tackle things he previously struggled with/resisted.
The classes have 16 kids per class with two teachers. Because of the small group, the teachers are know each student very well and have managed to create a very cohesive, supportive and affectionate community in the classroom. The social emotional curriculum is strong and integrated across disciplines. I have seen my child develop more awareness of being a good member of the community since starting AVS.
Alta Vista is a unique school that truly stimulates creative thinking and problem solving while nurturing the whole child. There is so much to love about this school. The classes are small and the teachers are smart, engaged and affectionate. The academics are strong- among the strongest we observed in any school. The curriculum is rich and interesting. The kids not only spend time doing science EVERY DAY but they also have drama, art, music and Spanish. Social emotional learning is woven throughout the curriculum. The kids who go to this school are very bright and also very sweet. If you are looking for a school where your bright child who is fascinated with math, science and building will thrive, look no further!
My daughter had an amazing year@AVS,the teachers she had were very dedicated&dynamic,they really get to know your child due to the small class size.We are very excited for another fantastic year@AVS!Ed knows every child&welcomes them with a warm handshake each morning,what a nice way to start the day!
Love this school!!!!