The Nueva School

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Nueva School
Nueva School - Bay Meadows Campus.jpg
Upper School campus
United States
Coordinates37°33′44″N 122°22′52″W / 37.5621280°N 122.3811965°W / 37.5621280; -122.3811965[1]Coordinates: 37°33′44″N 122°22′52″W / 37.5621280°N 122.3811965°W / 37.5621280; -122.3811965[1]
TypePrivate, coeducational
Motto"Learn by doing, learn by caring"
Established1967; 53 years ago (1967)
CEEB code051213
NCES School ID00089169
Head of SchoolLee Fertig
Faculty140 full-time
Enrollment930 (PreK–12)
Student to teacher ratio6.5:1
CampusesHillsborough, Bay Meadows
Campus sizeCombined area: 36 acres (150,000 m2)
Color(s)Blue and white
AthleticsBasketball, Cross-Country, Flag Football, Soccer, Squash, Tennis, Track and Field, Volleyball, Golf
Team nameMavericks (athletics)

The Nueva School is a private school, with two campuses, the lower and middle school in Hillsborough, and the high school in San Mateo, California, serving students in pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade. Nueva was founded in 1967 by Karen Stone McCown.

The lower school was originally located in Menlo Park but now is located on the site of the former W. H. Crocker Skyfarm mansion, which was purchased and donated to the school by the late W. Clement Stone. The school moved to the mansion in 1971.[2]

The remodeled mansion houses the lower school, grades pre-kindergarten to fourth. The head of lower school is Megan Terra. The middle school and classes for grades five to eight are also located on the Hillsborough campus and include the Hillside Learning Complex, gold-level LEED certified facilities, which house middle school classrooms, and the Cafe, PreK-Undergraduate classes library, a state-of-the-art research and design space known as the I-Lab, and administrative offices that serve the whole school. As of 2020, the head of Middle School is Karen Tiegel, the head of the Upper School is Liza Raynal, and the head of the Lower School is Megan Terra. Other campus facilities include a gymnasium/performance space, science labs, several playgrounds, art studios, and the "forts," a special outdoor play area. The Hillsborough school campus has a gym/multipurpose room known as the GCC where students play sports ranging from basketball to volleyball. Nueva's 42 acre Hillsborough campus is tiered, having the middle school going down into Crocker Mansion, going down into the hiking/forts trail. Nueva's upper field includes a track and two soccer goals, as well as a scoreboard that was installed in 2013.

A high school was established in 2013 and a new campus was built as part of the Bay Meadows development in San Mateo, opening in August 2014.[3][4][5] The inaugural ninth grade class was housed at the College of San Mateo.

Nueva is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges[6] and the California Association of Independent Schools.[7]

Admission to the school usually involves taking a test, the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence, Fourth Edition (WPPSI-IV) for children under six years old, and the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children, Fifth Edition (WISC-V) for children six years old and older.

Use of Common Core Standards[edit]

Nueva is a student-centered school known for its distinctive inquiry-based, interdisciplinary, project-based studies. Since 1967, Nueva has been a leader in education of special students and dedicated to its mission to inspire passion for lifelong learning, foster social and emotional acuity, and develop each student's imaginative mind. Notable programs include a rich music program designed, in part, by Sir Yehudi Menuhin working with Dr. Genevieve Fitzmaurice. The school's social emotional learning (SEL) curriculum has been part of a Nueva education since its founding, originally called Self-science. The SEL curriculum was developed in large part by Janice Toben. With the development of the I-Lab in 2007, Nueva was one of the first Design Thinking programs for PreK-8, now PreK-12 students, providing every student with training in design thinking methodology, engineering classes, projects, and practices that are now central to Nueva's learning approach.

Annual School Trips[edit]

Another element of a Nueva education is the annual trips program, further enabling students to live Nueva's motto of "Learn by Doing, Learn by Caring." Each year for grades one through twelve, students have a school trip. For first grade it is a one-night sleepover in the ballroom community space. For second, third, and fourth, students go on grade level camping trips. The second-grade trip is two days long, the third-grade trip is three days, and the fourth-grade trip is four. Fifth-grade students visit Crow Canyon Archaeological Center and the Four Corners region. Sixth grade students travel to Washington, DC.[8] Seventh-grade students backpack in Yosemite National Park for five days, and then take a four-day trip to Ashland, Oregon, to attend the Shakespeare festival. Eighth grade students travel to Spain, China, or Japan depending upon their language study, and participate in a homestay. Ninth grade students go to Peru to visit Machu Picchu.[9] Tenth grade students travel to Costa Rica to work with the Upwell Turtles and the Monteverde Institute in conjunction with their biology curriculum. Eleventh-grade students break up into several groups and travel to various locations in the United States as part of their American Studies curriculum. Twelfth-graders create their own roadtrips.


Nueva accepts new students every grade, though having such a rigorous application process, a small percentage get in. The application process includes but is not limited to; Parent Tours, Parent Interviews, Student Interviews, Student Shadow Days, IQ Tests, Student Comprehensive Test Taking, and Student MyPage Creation. Nueva has a large admissions team who every year gives the best possible experience to applying families. Parents will be invited to take a tour of the campus that they are applying their student to, starting 2020 on September 16th and ending on January 39th for middle school applicants. Parents will also be asked to talk to an admissions team member about their child in a 1 on 1 interview. Prospective students get to come to the campus for a day to get a sense of life at Nueva. Applicants will be asked in addition to write a small number of short application essays about themselves. Applicants will also be asked to take an IQ test to apply to Nueva, currently the minimum IQ to attend Nueva is 130. The current tuition for Nueva is around $50,000 a year.


  1. ^ "The Nueva School". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. April 6, 1998. Retrieved December 19, 2016.
  2. ^ "The Nueva School – History". Archived from the original on March 29, 2016. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  3. ^ Kinney, Aaron (October 10, 2014). "San Mateo: The Nueva School debuts Bay Meadows campus". The Mercury News. Archived from the original on December 12, 2017. Retrieved September 10, 2018.
  4. ^ "The Nueva School – High School FAQ". Archived from the original on April 12, 2016. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  5. ^ "The Nueva School – Bay Meadows Campus Now Open". Archived from the original on April 18, 2016. Retrieved October 27, 2015.
  6. ^[permanent dead link] Accrediting Commission for Schools: Western Association of Schools and Colleges The Nueva School.[dead link]
  7. ^ "California Association of Independent Schools – Search for a School". Archived from the original on April 5, 2016. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  8. ^ "The Nueva School – Middle School Trips". Archived from the original on November 2, 2015. Retrieved October 27, 2015.
  9. ^ "The Nueva School – Upper School Trips". Archived from the original on October 4, 2015. Retrieved October 27, 2015.

External links[edit]

Official website Edit this at Wikidata

Category:Nueva School alumni