Valle Verde Elementary/NorthCreek Academy in Walnut Creek, CA

Hi

We are considering buying a home in Northgate area of WC.

Although Northgate High seems to be a popular school, we have a 3 yr old child and our focus is on the elementary schools.

The home is served by Valle Verde Elementary in MDUSD.

I have read some pretty concerning reviews about schools in MDUSD not being funded like other WC schools and the quality going down consistently.

Most of these are pretty old so I am not sure if these concerns are still current or something of the past. GreatSchools rating of VV is 7 which is not that bad but not great either.

Would really like to hear first hand accounts from parents who are currently sending kids to VV.

Schools are one of the main reasons we are considering moving to WC, so if there are red flags we would like to avoid the move unless there are other options.

We are also considering NorthCreek Academy private school if public schools are not great, but we are not Christians and not sure how NCA would work out for our kid.

We are Asian Indian, so apart from being non-Christian, our worry is if our kid is the only brown kid in his class - how that would affect him (good/bad/neutral)

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Not sure if you know this but Walnut Creek has 2 school districts, Mount Diablo Unified and Walnut Creek unified which has couple of highly rated elementary schools. The other elementary school option in Northgate is Walnut Acres Elementary. I have a child there and have been happy with the school so far, although the 2nd grade class sizes are huge this year. There is an active PTA and the teachers are generally pretty good. Since you are considering private and not sure about going to a Christian school, I heard that Sonder Creek Academy and Seven Hill are both great. If you want feedback about Valley Verde from current families, the Walnut Creek mom group on Facebook could be helpful. 

Hello, our daughter is a first-grader at NorthCreek Academy and we couldn't be happier with her school. All of the teachers and staff truly care about the kids and parents get feedback about six times a year either through detailed report cards or progress reports. Although the academics are strong, there is an emphasis on building your child's character and helping her be a life-long learner. Our daughter is Korean, so we were also concerned about racial and ethnic diversity, and this school has a good mix of racial and socio-economic diversity, both which are hard to find in this area. NorthCreek is a Bible-based, classical Christian school so the kids have a weekly Bible lesson, weekly chapel, and memorize a Bible verse each month. There are informational meetings about the school and preschool starting next week, so if you are at all interested, I would contact the school (or PM me and I can help). The waitlists have grown long since Covid and it's better to be early. I would say that academically the kids are about 6 months to a year ahead of the public school. There is a lot of skill building in reading and math, as well as emphases on public speaking and writing. The students also learn grammar, music, PE, Latin, and art.

The Northgate neighborhood is very nice and you are close to a lot of the open spaces/recreation areas in Walnut Creek. One drawback is that you would be dependent on Ygnacio Valley Road to get to 680/24 and that road is congested most times of the day. You should go drive it in the morning and and evening to get a sense of what it's like. I would also either go to the Valley Verde playground or a nearby park like Arbolado park and talk to parents to see what VV is like. My experience is that most parents like their elementary school but will usually share the challenges with the school. You may also want to check out San Ramon if that's not too far. I know parents like the public schools and there are often more Asian Indian kids in some schools.

Best of luck to you. Please reach out if you would like more information about NorthCreek Academy.

Thank you @NorthOaklandMom & 3espressomom for your response.

I am not on FB but will create one and see if I can join one of the groups in WC.