Principal's Message

W.L. Valentine Elementary School is located in San Marino, which is east of Los Angeles, near the San Gabriel Mountains. What was once the home of the Gabrielino Indians, and later became the Henry E. Huntington Ranch, has evolved into a neighborhood of single-family homes, clustered around the Huntington Library and a beautiful community park. Valentine School, named for San Marino's second mayor, William L. Valentine, opened in its present location in 1938 with 380 students in kindergarten through fourth grades.  Current TK-5 enrollment is 600. Valentine is one of two elementary schools in the district, which also includes one middle and one high school. The schools in the San Marino Unified School District (SMUSD) are an integral part of a community that provides ongoing support in terms of volunteer service and financial commitment. 

Our mission is to create a collaborative environment that fosters lifelong learning for all children, inspires students to reach their highest potential, and empowers them to achieve their goals. What distinguishes our school is the balance of academics, character-building, age-appropriate activities, and personalized attention. Each Valentine student becomes a highly literate individual who is an effective writer and communicator, critical thinker, and problem solver who can combine these skills with technological expertise to attain personal goals in a culturally diverse world.

At Valentine, we embrace cultural diversity and pride ourselves on the caring relationships we develop with our students and their families in this close-knit community. The Valentine faculty provides a welcoming, nurturing environment designed to enable our students to be successful learners. Innovative and creative teaching and learning occur in an environment where positive attitudes, behavior, and high academic standards are expected, reinforced, and achieved. Our teachers integrate respect and caring into every part of their day, with a focus to empower students. Parent involvement is exemplary, as evidenced by the tens of thousands of hours volunteered by PTA and families every year. Student activities are academically focused, and enhanced with enriching opportunities in each school day. State content standards are taught in creative ways. Most importantly, our children thrive at Valentine School and are motivated to learn!

We have been very successful in implementing the Common Core State Standards, as evidenced by our state test scores. Disaggregated data show Valentine children to be high achievers on the whole and for all subgroups. When accounting for every child, we find that relatively few children fall below academic proficiency. For those children, we employ a concerted team approach of personalized attention. We believe our success is due in large part to Valentine’s culture of strong academics and learning, the close rapport among students and teachers, and the strong relationship between teachers and families. Our district supports class size reduction of average 24 students in grades TK-3, and classes range from 24-27 students in grades 4 and 5. As our teachers have implemented a standards-based curriculum, our students are gaining ground each day at school. We are so proud of our students and teachers!  

Welcome to Valentine School!

Whitney McAlpine