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  • Horizon, Pinnacle Make U.S. News & World Report 2017 Best High School List

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/25/2017

    Horizon High School and Pinnacle High School logos

    Once again, both Horizon High School and Pinnacle High School have made the U.S. News & World Report 2017 Best High School list.

    Pinnacle High School was ranked No. 17 in Arizona and No. 1160 nationally. Horizon High School was ranked No. 38 in Arizona and No. 2157 nationally. Pinnacle and Horizon received Silver Medals.

    According to U.S. News & World Report, more than 22,000 public high schools in the United States and the District of Columbia are awarded gold, silver or bronze medals based on their performance on state assessments, graduation rates and how well they prepare students for college. View the complete list.

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  • 2 Whispering Wind Academy Students Selected as Finalists for Crayola Empowering Students Through Creative Leadership Art Exhibition

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/24/2017

    Artwork bt=y Vivien Millecam and Samantha Beebee

    Original artwork created by Vivien Millecam and Samantha Beebee, Whispering Wind Academy students, were selected as finalists in the 2016-17 Crayola Empowering Students Through Creative Leadership Art Exhibition.

    The curated collection of finalists' artwork will be donated to the U.S. Department of Education to become part of the permanent collection of children's art, on display in Washington, D.C. and the Department's regional offices.

    Vivien and Samantha, as well as every finalist whose work is selected for the curated collection, will receive $200 worth of Crayola products and a plaque featuring a replica of the student's original artwork. Joni Starmer, an art teacher at Whispering Wind Academy, will also receive $200 worth of Crayola products.

    Artwork by Ani Hartman Additionally, Ani Hartman's artwork, The Road Ahead, has a special opportunity. Although the artwork wasn’t selected as a finalist for the Art Exhibition, Crayola was so impressed with Ani's submission that they would include it in their education resources.


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  • Thank you, Volunteers!

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/24/2017

    Woman reaching her hand out

    Volunteers play an integral role in the lives of students in PVSchools. National Volunteer Week, April 23rd-29th, recognizes the value, contributions, support and work that volunteers do. As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, PVSchools would also like to extend a heartfelt thank you to all of our volunteers who make a difference in the lives our students each and every day.

    At PVSchools, we welcome and encourage our parents to volunteer in their child’s school and chaperone class field trips. Research has shown that students whose parents volunteer in the classroom have higher test scores, receive better grades and have better attendance.

    VIP Volunteers

    Another way that community members can be involved in our schools is by being a volunteer tutor in our award-winning Volunteer In Paradise (VIP) program. This program matches dedicated qualified volunteer tutors with students at one of six participating schools. Volunteer tutors work with students in either a one-on-one setting or in small groups with the goal of increasing student achievement. Volunteer tutors are needed in all subject areas in kindergarten through 6th grades at Arrowhead Elementary School, Desert Shadows Elementary School, Echo Mountain Primary School, Mercury Mine Elementary SchoolNorth Ranch Elementary School and Sunset Canyon Elementary School.

    VIP Fast Facts:

    • There are 69 VIPs who provide more than 200 hours of academic intervention to students every week.
    • Since August 2016, VIPs have volunteered more than 3,200 hours.
    • VIP was the 2015 First Place Winner of the National School Boards Association Magna Award.

    Learn more about all of the volunteer opportunities that are available in PVSchools.


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  • Governing Board Resolution No. 427 Opposing Expansion of Education Savings Accounts (SB1431)

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/21/2017

    Arizona School Boards Association logo

    The Arizona Legislature recently passed, and Governor Ducey signed, Senate Bill 1431 which expands Arizona’s Education Savings Account (ESA) program to any student in Arizona.  This resolution opposes this expansion for the following reasons:

    WHEREAS, the Legislature is charged under the Arizona Constitution to provide for “the establishment and maintenance of a general and uniform public school system” (Art. 11, Sec. 1);

    WHEREAS, the Legislature is charged under the Arizona Constitution to “make such appropriations, to be met by taxation, as shall insure the proper maintenance of all state educational institutions, and shall make such special appropriations as shall provide for their development and improvement” (Art. 11, Sec. 10);

    WHEREAS, the Arizona Constitution prohibits any “tax shall be laid or appropriation of public money made in aid of any church, or private or sectarian school, or any public service corporation” (Art. 9, Sec. 10);

    WHEREAS, “the general conduct and supervision of the public school system shall be vested…in such governing boards for the state institutions as may be provided by law” (Art. 11, Sec. 2);

    WHEREAS, Arizona ranks 48th in school funding (Education Week, Quality Counts, 2017), with Arizona teachers receiving the lowest salaries in the nation (Bureau of Labor Statistics, Morrison Institute, 2016), the third highest class sizes in the country (National Center for Education Statistics, 2015) and a growing teacher shortage crisis due to low pay and unacceptable working conditions;

    WHEREAS, the cost of ESAs is covered exclusively by our state’s general fund hurting the ability to fund our public schools and other programs;

    WHEREAS, it has been shown that most of those using ESAs are the affluent who may have chosen to attend private school, even absent an ESA;

    WHEREAS, the so-called cost savings and accountability measures contained in SB1431 do not safeguard the state’s general fund enough and ESA proponents have already vowed to repeal them;

    NOW THEREFORE, it is resolved that the school district governing board of the Paradise Valley Unified School District, made up of locally elected and accountable school governing board members representing our community oppose the passage and signing of SB1431 into law and urge its reconsideration and repeal.

    Adopted by the governing board at a meeting held on April 20, 2017.


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  • 3 Horizon Students Earn AA Degrees Before High School Diplomas

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/20/2017

    AA recipients: Courtney Fried, Nicole Padgett and Ashlynn Sardina

    Before they even receive their high school diploma, three Horizon High School students have earned their Associate of Arts degree through the Dual Enrollment program with Rio Salado College.

    On May 3rd, Ashlynn Sardina, Courtney Fried and Nicole Padgett will receive their diploma at the Rio Salado College graduation ceremony.

    On May 25th, they will receive their high school diploma. Their hard work and determination have paid off. Now, they will enter college two years ahead of their peers. Dual Enrollment allows students to earn high school and college credit at the same time. In some cases, students can earn an associate's degree by the time they finish high school.

    This fall, Ashlynn will attend the University of Arizona, and Courtney and Nicole will both attend Northern Arizona University.


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  • PV Students Bring Home the Awards from the AZ Science & Engineering Fair

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/20/2017

    Several PVSchools students won awards at the Arizona Science & Engineering Fair. The AzSEF is managed by Arizona Science Center and brings together first-place winners from science fairs across Arizona to compete for thousands of dollars in prizes and scholarships. The AzSEF award winners are:

    • Zachary Rolfness Zachary Rolfness, a student in the Center for Research, Engineering, Science and Technology program at Paradise Valley High School, placed first in the Systems Software category. Zachary also earned one of the fifteen coveted spots on the 2017 AzSEF Intel International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF) team, which will take place May 14–19 in Los Angeles. All expenses for Zachary are covered by AzSEF generous sponsors.

    • Additional Paradise Valley High School won awards:
      • Jackson Banks, Isabella Wylie and Amanda Dahir received the Ricoh Sustainable Development Award.
      • Elizabeth Church and Julia Lisk won 3rd Place in the Plant Sciences Division.
      • Melissa LaCross, Alexandra Rolfness and Cameron Gedris won 3rd Place in the Earth and Environmental Sciences Division.
      • Nick Sierka won 3rd Place in the Microbiology Division.

    Sonoran Sky award winners: Rhys Lenick, Simer Singh and Zahra Alam

    • Sonoran Sky Elementary School students also won several awards:
      • Zahra Alam, a 6th-grade self-contained gifted student, won 1st Place in the Earth Sciences Elementary Division for her project on Wave Lengths of Light and Solar Panels.
      • Simer Singh, a 5th-grade self-contained gifted student, won 2nd Place in Computer Sciences Elementary Division for his project on Computer Speed.
      • Rhys Lenick, a 6th-grade student, won an award in the Plants Elementary Division for her project on Lichens as Bioindicators for Acid Rain.


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  • Empty Bowls Sale Raises $1,876 for PV Emergency Food Bank

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/19/2017

    A selection of the empty bowls on sale this year

    On April 6th, PVSchools hosted the 9th Annual Empty Bowls Sale. The sale raised $1,876 for the Paradise Valley Emergency Food Bank, an emergency food pantry that serves families who reside within the PVSchools boundaries.

    Thank you for making this event a success for the entire community!

    The PV Emergency Food Bank has been helping individuals and families in the community for more than 30 years. You can help by donating non-perishable items or by making a tax credit donation to the organization.

    Here are a few facts about the PV Emergency Food Bank:

    • In 2016, the PV Emergency Food Bank provided assistance to more than 3,848 families comprising 10,660 individuals, which includes 4,335 children.

    • Through organized food drives and individual donations, 240,000 pounds of food was donated.

    • In 2008, the PV Emergency Food Bank launched the "Backpack Program" to provide breakfast, lunch, and snack items to students for the weekend. Today, this program provides weekend meals for 600 students in 17 schools.

    • The Nurses Program, which provides juice and crackers for use when dispensing medicines at school, is active in 19 schools.


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  • PVOnline Offers Summer Classes

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/18/2017

    PVOnline student

    Do you want to get ahead or retake a class to achieve a better grade? Looking for a high school summer program that works around your busy summer schedule? PVOnline has summer options available to current 9th-12-grade students. Through PVOnline, PVSchools students are eligible to take one free online semester course. View the list of available classes.


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  • PVSchools Offers Summer Programs for All Students

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/18/2017

    blue backback sitting on beack

    School will be out in just a few short weeks. What will your child be doing during summer vacation? Good news, PVSchools will have an array of programs available for the 75 days of Summer Break.

    PVSchools Community Education Department will offer:


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  • Horizon High School Receives AEF A+ School of Excellence™ Award

    Posted by PVSchools at 4/13/2017

    A+ School of Excellence

    Horizon High School has earned the A+ School of Excellence™ Award from the Arizona Educational Foundation (AEF). Horizon was one of 39 Valley schools to receive this prestigious honor.

    This is the second time that Horizon has received this honor. The school first earned the A+ designation in 2013.

    According to the AEF website, schools are evaluated in the areas of student focus and support, school culture, active teaching and learning, curriculum, leadership, community and parent involvement and assessment. The selection panel includes award-winning principals, teachers and community leaders. Panel members conducted site visits to selected schools throughout the state in order to choose A+ School of Excellence™ award winners.

    Each school will receive $500 and a banner designating it as an A+ School of Excellence™. All staff and faculty at the awarded schools are eligible for partial scholarships from Argosy University Phoenix.

    Schools that earn the A+ School of Excellence™ designation retain their status for a 3-year period after which time they must reapply for the award.


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