Valencia High School

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School Overview

With passionate teachers, committed students, and an involved community Valencia High School provides a home and a family to more than 2,600 talented and enthusiastic students representing a rich diversity of backgrounds and personal experiences. The student body and staff work hard each year to achieve high academic performance standards, new levels of school spirit, and to nurture our long-standing ties with the surrounding community.


Valencia High School was established in 1933 as the first of the four high schools (Valencia, El Dorado, Esperanza, and Yorba Linda) in the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District. The campus, located on 44 acres in Placentia, includes 113 classrooms, a library, fifteen computer labs, two gymnasiums, an upgraded pool, two locker rooms, a 900-seat auditorium, a modernized multi-use stadium, baseball and softball fields, a multipurpose room, and multiple school offices. Valencia High School’s student enrollment has grown steadily since the early 1980s, to its current enrollment of 2615 and it is currently the largest high school in the district. Valencia’s population growth is the result of residential development, higher density living, and students attending Valencia on inter-district transfers. The Valencia Academy, which includes an International Baccalaureate Program and a Val Tech Diploma Program, has been instrumental in bringing students to Valencia from outside our attendance area and district. As a result of our growth in enrollment over the last several years, Valencia High School has been able to increase the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, computer technology, and ROP classes offered. Valencia High School has been able to maintain and enhance its athletic, music, and extracurricular programs, offering varied opportunities for students to become involved in school programs. VHS completed several modernization projects revitalizing the look and lay out of the campus. Continued projects address the final phase of modernization. In a recent parent and community survey, VHS was recognized for a clean and safe campus.

Valencia’s attendance area includes a broad range of people from throughout the nation and world. There are 27 languages spoken by our culturally diverse student body, which includes approximately 57% Hispanic, 22% White, 14% Asian, and 2% African-American students. The English Learner population is 15%, and students with disabilities number around 10%. The school attendance area includes sections of the cities of Placentia, Yorba Linda, Anaheim, and Fullerton. The students reside in single family homes, condominiums, townhomes, and apartments. The socioeconomic status of their households ranges from upper-middle to lower class, and approximately 57% of the students are classified as socio-economically disadvantaged. Valencia strives to meet the needs of its diverse student body by offering a variety of educational opportunities and support for all learners. Valencia’s enrollment area is primarily residential. The area does include, however, several small shopping centers and some commercial development.

Valencia High School was named a California Distinguished School in 1992. We were also a first-round recipient of a California Digital High School Grant in 1998, the State Block Grant in 2006, and the AT&T Grant in 2008. The California School Board Association (CSBA) awarded Valencia High School the Golden Bell award for our HOPE program.

Valencia students receive an abundance of academic and emotional support through the House and Opportunities Program Endeavor (HOPE) program, Migrant Education Program, English Language Development program, counseling services, School Resource Officer, and the tutoring program. Financial support is provided by the athletics and fine and performing arts booster clubs, PTSA, and the Grad Night Committee, which are very active on campus.

Valencia High School is fortunate to have the support of community and business
organizations for its programs. Community support comes from the School Site
Council, which oversees the categorical budgets, site grants, and provides guidance to the Valencia administration, and several other organizations such as the Placentia-Yorba Linda Education Foundation, the Placentia Police Department (providing a School Resource Officer), approximately 65 local agencies supporting the Community Service Program, the Placentia Library Literacy Program, and the Placentia Rotary Club.

Business organizations that support our school include Cisco, Boeing and Beckman Corporations, North Orange County Regional Occupational Program (NOCROP), the Building Industry Association of Orange County and the Trade Contractors Council. The last two agencies support the Business and Industrial Technology Academy (BITA), a popular program teaching construction skills.

Valencia High School’s many outstanding academic, athletic, and extracurricular
programs have received local, state, and national recognition over the years. U.S. News and World Report magazine awarded Valencia a silver medal and the Washington Post, one of the most prestigious newspapers in the nation, ranked the top high schools in the United States in “The High School Challenge”. For the first time, the Post included private schools in their ranking. Valencia High School ranked in the top 2% of high schools in the nation.

Each year, many Valencia seniors earned the elite status of National Merit Finalists and National Merit Commended Scholars. Valencia High School is recognized as an academic competition powerhouse with Orange County Division I Academic Decathlon championships, Chemistry Olympiad Team championships and Science Olympiad Team among the top in the county.

Each year, Valencia’s seniors are accepted to numerous Ivy League schools including Brown, Cornell, Harvard, Columbia and Yale. Other prestigious universities including Stanford, Boston College, Boston University, Brandeis, Drexel, Duke, Emory, Fordham, Georgetown, John Hopkins, Notre Dame, Northeastern, NYU, Penn State, Pittsburgh, St. Johns, the University of Chicago, and Vanderbilt will be the destination for many Tiger graduates. Valencia seniors will be equally represented at prestigious local universities including Chapman, Claremont McKenna, Loyola-Marymount, Pepperdine, and USC.

Valencia continues to be over-represented at the University of California even during a trend when acceptances are being radically cut due to budget constraints and increased out-of-state and international acceptances. Each year, double-digit Valencia students are accepted to the top University of California schools UCLA, UC Berkley, UC Irvine, UC San Diego, UC Santa Barbara. In addition, Valencia continues to be one of the primary feeder schools to California State University Fullerton. It is estimated that each year 98% of graduates pursue post-secondary studies including 45% who matriculate to four-year universities. In addition, 100% of our AVID graduates attend college each year with 76% of these students attending four-year schools. 86% of these students are the first in their family to attend college. Each year, our graduates earn over $3.5 million in scholarships.

As a proud member of the Empire League, Valencia High School has a rich history of success in athletics. Numerous League and CIF Championships have been earned by our male and female student athletes. Our coaches are devoted to the athletic, academic and personal success of our students and promote the value of teamwork.

Graduates in the prestigious Academy programs increase each year. Based upon completion rate and diploma recipients, Valencia’s International Baccalaureate Program is now positioned to be the number one IB Program in Orange County. Our Val Tech program provides students with invaluable STEM and CTE experiences that will prepare them for success in the 21st century.

Valencia High School remains committed to our motto of pride, tradition, and excellence. Through this motto we continually work for overall improvement and success for all students.