Over ten years ago, my wife and I scoured the Coachella valley looking for the best Pre-k program for our then four-year-old son. Having a B.A. in Child Development with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education, I quickly discovered Palm Valley School had no equal in the valley. Every component of the program from play and pretend to read alouds and community outings were exactly what children in a Pre-Kindergarten program needed.
The research started again before Kindergarten only to discover that Palm Valley School’s emphasis on the whole child as a learner far outweighed the basic reading and mathematics as a focused approach taken by every other elementary school in the Coachella Valley. Palm Valley School understands the value of art, music, technology, and languages beyond English. Add to that, the close-knit community in the Lower School. To this day, we still greet our son’s Lower School teachers with a warm embrace and questions about one another’s families.
Being a middle school teacher of almost twenty years allowed for our family’s full confidence in keeping our son at Palm Valley School. The ease in making the decision was not in any way because other middle schools are less than competent, but rather because Palm Valley students learn in middle school what most high school students don’t learn until their Junior or Senior years. With a challenging curriculum as such, how could we not select Palm Valley?
Here we are, ten years later, with the choice of a big, traditional high school experience for our son, or a Palm Valley experience. After ten years of attending Palm Valley School commencement ceremonies, we are convinced. We have witnessed students who would never in their lives have had the confidence to perform on stage, or play a varsity sport, or take numerous AP exams all while challenging themselves academically. Here at Palm Valley School, students do that every single year.
Palm Valley graduates move forward confident and strong. Each graduating class proud of their number of college acceptances, their nationally recognized monologue competitors, their Eagle Scout representatives and their strong bonds with one another.
Four years from now, we look forward to the day our son Elijah walks down from that stage and embraces us as he takes his very last recess during his commencement ceremony in 2022.
-Mayra Rodriguez, Rufino & Elijah Cuevas
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