We have been at this school for six years and it's an amazing learning environment. The teachers are dedicated, parents involved, and the students happy and engaged. The PTO provides excellent music, art and other enrichment programs -- and this school has arguably the best PE teacher in all of Marin County. The campus is beautiful and quiet and backs-up to open space which is used for walking field trips. In short, this is a special community and truly a great school!
Sun Valley is located in San Rafael and within the San Rafael City Schools. It has approximately 500 students from K-5th grades. Sun Valley has some good teachers but it is really hit or miss. My son had an excellent teacher but my daughter had an OK teacher that wasn't strong in teaching Math or managing the classroom. The parent community is friendly and helpful in the classrooms. The art, music, and PE teachers do an outstanding job. The safety on-campus is an issue. There are 250 or so students at a time playing on a smallish field or on the jungle gym. It seems very chaotic out there for the younger children and there is not enough adult supervision for that many student. The principal has been at the school for a number of years but doesn't seem to know the students well and is a bit unprofessional to parents in the PTA and acts very defensive. It is a good school for being public but I think our children deserve better.
Sun Valley has a great small school feel. We loved the multi-age class option. Sometimes I wish that my child was challenged more. The teachers definately have to teach to the general level of the class and can't do much individualization of curriculum. Parents are encouraged to participate at any and all levels. Our kids love the extra stuff (library, PE, art, music, computer lab, science) and the casual sports camp after school. The fundraisers are fun and mild compared to other schools.
Our best school experience to date has been Sun Valley. Parent involvement is extremely high and we loved the welcoming attitude of teachers and staff toward parents. Extracurricular activities were plentiful though some new ideas for 'extras' are overdue. Academically simply tremendous for our child. A great start for any child.
Good school. One of the best in the district. Good community. Active parent involvement. Active pta providing funding for pe, art, music, technology and other programs. School modernization completed in 2004, including addition of multi-use building with ajacent music and art rooms. Good multi-age programs available. Good after school programs offered.