We moved to be in the De Soto school district. They build on positive character traits and have a top down mentality rather than bottom up. MV is one of the best schools in the state. With current student population around 1,400 it is larger than it was a few years ago but the projections show slow decreases in the future. They have been expanding AP opportunities and are great at college prep. No school is perfect and I hate to hear that MV has a drug problem as I believe it is better than most, not perfect but good. Students do better with involved parents. MV has teachers and staff that connect with students, some excel and I am grateful that my kids have gone to school here.
The school has many excellent offerings whether it be extracurricular or academic. The parents are involved and it has a good community feel. There is a rampant drug/alcohol problem that is semingly dismissed or ignored by either parents or staff. Unfortunately to the detriment of the students and school district it is crowed and getting more and more crowded by year. The next two middle school classes coming in are large and will make things very uncomfortable (students barely have time to eat lunch now) for the students and faculty. This could have been avoided with a recent boundary change that would have benefited both high schools in the district while keeping the academic standards high at both schools. Unfortunately athletics will be affected negatively at Mill Valley with no boundary change forcing the school to compete at the 6A level in the coming years. This has already been witnessed this year in football. We have a wonderful school district with limitless opportunities for students. Next time my hope is the BOE will make a decision based on what is best for the school district and not cave in to pressure from a select group of parents.
Mill Valley has been a good school for my three children. It has significantly improved academically over the years and is becoming a GREAT school. There is a core group of "rock star" teachers your students definitely want to experience, ie., Mattingly, Habiger, Bogart, Keal, Dunback, Wieland, Strickland, Paredes, Chavez, DeWild, Swafford, Crosbie, H. Brown, just to name a few. These are teachers that traditionally teach honors or AP but well worth the effort!!!! The school has increased in size recently but it is not so big, where with reasonable effort, your child can succeed in sports, clubs, etc....However, be aware, many of the typical students are more interested in parties than the purpose of an education. Be proactive as a parent! Get to know your kids friends and parents before assuming they have the same values as you. Drinking among the student body is common and unfortunately, drugs are readily available, The "no tolerance" rule needs to be more consistently enforced among the teams and clubs. If you child says they are going to a party, there WILL be alcohol AND drugs. Going to these parties should be avoided. Parents, plan a supervised, safe alternative!
For many years I've had issues with this school and the district in general. It all started when I wished to transfer back to public high school after a year at private school. The teachers and administration would not help me get things in order nor would they get involved in any way. When I had problems they didn't help and I know I'm not the first these problems. Also they do not allow students to excel or graduate early and could care less about a student's future or ambitions. All it seems Mill Valley cares about is sports and looking good on paper. They do not actually care about students and their educations.
I am not an easy fan of public education but I have found MVHS to be excellent. Academically they provide opportunity for students to excel and the teachers are superb. I would recommend the district to anyone seeking a quality school.