• Spartan Choir Show really Sings

    With a full house, we saw four amazing pianists, five great voice pieces, two dance troupes and six numbers by concert choir representing the diversity and talent of Pinole Valley High School in the best of all venues, our own Theater! Mr. Joseph Lim, choir director was the man making it all happen. We know that his piano team has been working all year, and this was the their first public recital. The choir has been doing some performances and will be returning to the senior center Friday for a last show.. The music represented a wide array of cultures and styles, we had guitars, we had ukeleles, we had classical and contemporary music too. The dancers all came from clubs on campus (with the generous faculty support of Mr. Lim), it is a tribute to the commitment of these students that even without a set time or schedule, they could keep to a schedule and make the magic happen. The choir, of course, is a designated class, but we have never seen a crew quite like this one. We are looking forward to more indigenous and multicultural songs as well as traditional and modern music. The students are proud of their new skills and we are thrilled to hear them work.

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  • Band Show wraps up 2019 with a Bang

    If you only have time for one show this holiday season, then we would say, you can't do better than coming to Pinole Vallley's Theater on Thursday December 19th and see and HEAR what we've been bragging about since we got to Pinole Valley. The Concert band made up of primarily underclassmen and new musicians will start off the festivities, then after some ensemble work being done by senior members of the crew, it will be the Symphonic Band which then carries the program. We have heard some of their songs during the year and the Area Festival, and you will be moved and delighted to hear what band members with a couple of years experience can sound like. We will then have a solo or two, maybe a raffle or two, before finishing things up with our award winning Jazz Band. The A period students get to school early, but this evening, will stay the latest to perform everything from set pieces to improvisation. We are so pleased that our new theater will be hosting, and ask that you might want to get here early so you can a great seat. Oh, we are kidding, they are all great seats. Be here with us to ring out the old, and swing in the new!

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  • Spartan Basketball sweep TCAL foes

    The Spartan basketball teams are making the coldest months pretty hot for the opposition. The boys were home yesterday and turned back Jesse Bethel High School in a 76-72 thriller. The best thing? The boys are now 2-0 headed into action later this week. We will be playing not one, but two Kennedys. The first, the Titans of Kennedy-Fremont right here in the big gym on Thursday night, the second being a road game at Kennedy-Richmond, a battle for first place! The girls continued their fast start with a convincing 49-29 rout of Hercules on the road. The ladies are 3-0 in league and host Richmond this Friday night in the big gym. We are thrilled with the difference having a home gym makes. Come see the roster board featuring our varsity, and make sure that you don't miss a game--it's been a fast start!

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  • Seniors Wrap up Government/Economics for the Semester

    For the class of 2020, the best is yet to come, but one of the most important graduation requirements, is getting near the end, to maximize student preparedness. We are talking about the requirement to complete with passing grades, American Government and Economics. Unique amongst course listings, the two courses listed above are Semester only. That means that students fate gets decided early. We are confident that most all of our upperclassmen will pass the class, we are more hopeful still, that they will be able to apply their knowledge into the "real world" right away. We just visited Mr. DeVance's Economics class this morning and heard a good lesson in personal finance, namely the renting of an apartment, with conversation about renter's rights and responsibilities. Very interesting and engaging, we saw the class asking relevant and thoughtful questions throughout. It was a pleasure! And of course, while some of the school is in their Econ section, the other half is finishing up American Government. No need to explain here, how important that is, but a reminder about how challenging it is to provide balance and information in times as politically fraught as our own. We know that we are turning out future voters and jury members and tax payers. So it is more important than ever to have a well taught and critically thinking crew. We salute our teachers and staff who do the most immediate work of getting these young adults best prepared for the responsibility and roles going forward. Finals exams for these students in January will represent a true final grade, and the the classes flip, and students who mastered the one course now move on to the other.

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  • Winter Wonderland and Spirit Days

    How much do we like Winter at school? Let us count the ways. 12 days of studying before finals, 11 ways to create presents in art class to send to your significant others. 10 possible games to attend between basketball, soccer and wrestling all next week, 9 different toys you can bring in to celebrate the Toy Drive, 8 types of decor on campus to make things festive and bright, 7 other ways to ring in the season including Hannukah and Kwanza, 6 possible shows or concerts between now and the last day of school. 5 spirit days including Pajama Day on Monday, Ugly Sweater Tuesday, Fuzzy and Flannel Wednesday, Holiday Gear Thursday and Class in Color Friday. 4 different entities (Concert Choir, K-Pop, Spartan Take Over and Pianos) on Concert Night Wednesday, 3 Bands (Concert, Symphonic and Jazz) on Thursday and 2 last days to see the Cheer Team perform and 1 great finish to 2019 with a Minimum Day Friday early exit. We are especially excited to decorate our beautiful new school, and we think you will also like to see the bunting and ribboned up hallways and doorways. The leadership class has added lights to the party and it is our pleasure to make the already attractive physical plant even prettier. Yes, we put lights on the palm trees. When you are here next week for the game, concert or performance, it would be happy for us if you looked around and saw our holiday cheer

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  • County Honor Band Trio Represents West Contra Costa

    That is Emmnauel Soto '21 on tuba. Eli Bird '21 percussion and Anthony Aguilar '21 on saxophone and they are all moving on to be part of the Contra Costa County Honor Band on February 1st, 2020. The boys have multiple rehearsals before the big show and we are Spartan proud of their accomplishments. The junior musicians have a chance to try out next year and also may be eligible next year for the State honor band,. Mr. Radkiewicz, the band director has the crew getting ready for their next big show, on Thursday December 19 in our new Theater space with music from the Concert Band, the Symphonic Band and the Jazz Band. Looking forward to a season of great music from Pinole Valley We are going to be hearing a lot of great sounds from the school all next week. Our choir is going to be performing at a local senior center on Tuesday, on the morning announcements all through the week and then putting on its big Holiday Show on Wednesday December 18 in the new Theater. Check out the concert choir, some solos, some ensembles and some dance from Spartan Take over and K-Pop. What a great way to ring in the holidays, with music, Pinole Valley and You.

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  • Spartan Study Trips bring our Students to the Community

    Sometimes it is the day out of school that provides the most meaningful Educational meaning. Tuesday, our ASL class was postponed from traveling to the California School of the Deaf in Fremont. But they will attend later this Spring. Meanwhile the Health Academy sophomores are on their way to Bio Rad to learn about some of the jobs and activities done in their preferred field by those in the know. Meanwhile tomorrow finds the National Honor Society going to Stewart School then a crew of our English class is going to San Francisco to see the musical Hamilton at a matinee. Then while all this is going on, we have our Special needs teachers and students going to Job Corps to see about transitions and the future. We also will be waving goodbye to our Engineering students who are going to the Carpenter's Union and the Jelly Belly factory. There is almost no limit to the value that students together with a trusted instructor can learn on a day that they are in "the real world" free to imagine themselves and their future in the world. Often times students report their most important days at school weren't at school at all. We really honor our Vision to become a valued member of our community when we are out in it exploring. And eating jelly bellies

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  • Physics Students Get the Drop on Gravity

    One of the factors for Pinole Valley shifting its science opener from the traditional Biology-Chemistry to a Physics course has a lot to do with activities like those in Ms. Cudaback's classroom this week. Students are testing out how far and fast items drop, measuring the results and then recording the results after. We are pleased to hear them try to apply what their eyes see, with what they are learning in the classroom. So, a piece of paper floats to the ground more slowly than a paperback book. But why? Students talk about wind resistance and the air flow. A much more sophisticated and informed method than they did days before. We are learning with lots of hands-on lessons and then some we can observe online and in our text. The value of Physics is easily seen. Students who pass the class earn their Physical Science credits toward graduation. We still have an AP level for students who incorporate more math and more complicated connections. We are pleased to see that many students are "natural" physicists and that the formal learning on top, makes them more talented practitioners as well. Students who want other physical science courses can continue their exploration in Chemistry and we will offer AP classes in both courses. We believe that the students actually lifting, carrying, dropping and timing, brings the lessons to life. We challenge you to ask your physics students how it is that objects do what they do, and don't be surprised if you get an answer, and a request to stand on a table and replicate the experiment

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  • Spartan Athletes of the Week celebrated

    It's all about the Boys this weekend. (Though girls basketball beat El Cerrito on Saturday night, girls soccer tied Vallejo on Friday and one of our female wrestlers took second place and silver--huh, maybe it wasn't ALL about the boys!). Mateo Tahsini led the fellas basketball team to a pair of wins this weekend at the Mt. Diablo tournament. The best start for Spartan hoops in years. Mateo was named first team and wins the right to have his name in lights. The boys open up league play this Friday night at Hercules. In wrestling, Sam Bressie was first place and gold at an invitational after winning matches in our dual meets earlier in the week. Sam and the rest of the grapplers are in action this Wednesday home vs. Bethel and Albany High. We are Spartan proud of all. The Spartan athlete of the week is a tradition we started to celebrate the student athletes who perform with excellence during the season. We award them a T-shirt with the recognition and put their names up in lights on the school marquee. We traditionally honor varsity athletes, so don't be offended if we miss out on a stellar JV or freshman performance. Also, there are weeks where the award is not made and some like this week, where there is an embarrassment of riches. Congratulations to Mateo and Sam, both of whom gave it their all, and made the school look good while doing it.

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  • Snowball Dance tickets on Sale all this Week

    Students who want to show off their best moves and put on their Winter's Best can buy their tickets to the premier formal dance of the season. We will have our cashier's office open for purchasing. Students can still apply to be part of the Snowball Court. We hope that all of our Spartans come out to the Richmond Auditorium on December 14th and make the Winter Ball magical We are also looking forward to a big visit on Tuesday from Josten's. Everything from caps and gowns to senior announcements, the graduation company is also selling class rings and swag so that seniors can tell the world they are part of the class of 2020. We are going to have the window open by the cashier's office this week so that all students can access, and Josten's will actually set up a table outside to be able to interact even more easily with students. It's a busy time to be a senior, and we want to make sure that you don't miss out on a single experience or adventure along the way.

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  • Spartans to Shimada

    The opportunity of a lifetime has a deadline, and it is Friday December 13 for any Spartan students interested in traveling to Shimada, Japan. The Richmond-Shimada Friendship has been around for over a decade, and it changes lives. We would love to have you take part. Either go to the website or to Mr. Pinto (photography teacher) will have details. We know how enriching it is to mix and match cultures. Our students who have gone overseas still talk about getting to see how others live--what things are similar and what is very different. Get your application in now so you don't forget. We are announcing a number of other educational opportunities this week in our Daily announcements. If your student does not have access to them, read over the school loudspeaker every morning during the last five minutes of first period, we also send the announcements out to all teachers first period, and then print them out and post them in the main office. Students looking for scholarships and other opportunities that they hear can always check with our clerk in the main office, who will direct them to the "book" which contains all up-to-date scholarship info and to flyers and notices about programs and cool events that may interest and serve their needs. For instance, just announced, a BBQ and get together for Pinole Police, police explorer program this Saturday. Need to RSVP? We have the announcements for that!

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  • Budget Meeting Broadcast to Pinole Valley

    When and where does the money go? A special meeting on Monday in our school library as West Contra Costa Unified's Budget person goes live and simulcast to speak to the community about money and projections. We will be hosting all interested in our school library. This is in place of our usual PTSA meeting. But we will have many of our regulars present, including the principal. We look forward to some insights and some clarifications. We invite you to come by 6:00 p.m. and we will have it on video. The video will be interactive and the speaker will be able to take questions from the community during the presentation.

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