Monta Vista High School is a four-year comprehensive public high school located in the Silicon Valley city of Cupertino, California, US. Part of the Fremont Union High School District, the school serves most of the suburban residential and industrial technology enriched area of western Cupertino. Monta Vista is ranked by Newsweek as one of the top public high schools in California, and ranked 92 by US News & World Report.
Monta Vista High opened in 1969, initially offering only freshman and sophomore classes; the first class graduated in 1972. The first year also included the freshman class from Fremont High in Sunnyvale, which were displaced by a fire in the main building after the 1969 graduation. Since then, its student body size has averaged about 2400 students. The campus can be seen featured in the 1973 comedy film The Cheerleaders, about a cheer squad that sleeps with the opposing football team to weaken the offense. Many of the common MVHS sites, such as the rally court and closet under the B-building stairs, can be seen featured in the film.
For the 2014–15 school year, Monta Vista reported enrollment of 2373 students, with demographics as 79.8% Asian, 16.4% White, and 3.8% Other (African American, Latino, Native American). 3.1% of students were classified as Limited English.
A controversial 2005 Wall Street Journal article described the influx of Asians at Monta Vista and suggested that the school was experiencing a "white flight" caused by White American families feeling overwhelmed by the academic focus of the school's majority Asian American students.
In 2012 and 2013, Monta Vista scored 10/10 with 956 points out of 1000 for the Academic Performance Index; this score is the highest API score of all high schools in the Santa Clara County, followed by Lynbrook High (946) and Saratoga High (933). After analyzing 21,069 public high schools in America, US News & World Report issued America's Best High Schools in 2009 which ranked Monta Vista #73. In 2007, Newsweek's 1,200 top U.S. schools ranked Monta Vista #85, the 7th Californian high school. The highest ranked school in the Fremont Union High School District, The Washington Post magazine ranked Monta Vista as the 57th best high school in the United States, the fourth highest academically performing high school in all of California, and the highest academically ranked school in the Fremont Union High School District in 2005. Though these rankings exclude private schools, many have selective admission policies, whereas public schools like Monta Vista and Lynbrook are open to all students that live within the assigned school boundaries, and each year proof of residency is required and verified for enrollment. For this reason, these rankings do not necessarily provide accurate results for all high schools.
The school offers eight honors classes and fifteen Advanced Placement classes. During students' junior and senior years, they can choose to participate in one of the alternative programs offered through De Anza College. The Middle College Program is available to juniors and seniors, while College Now is offered exclusively to members of the senior class. These programs allow students to explore interests with classes that aren't always offered at high school and build up college credits while completing the requirements for a diploma.
Monta Vista High School's mascot is the Matador, with purple and gold as its official school colors. The school mascot's costume, up until the 2012–2013 school year, had been a purple bull, El Toro. Recently, on August 31, 2012, a new mascot, Monty the Matador, was introduced during the Welcome Back Rally. MVHS has held a longtime rivalry with nearby Lynbrook High School and Cupertino High School, facing the latter annually in the "Helmet Game" for football superiority. MVHS competes in the SCVAL (Santa Clara Valley Athletic League) of the Central Coast Section.
The majority of the school's buildings are built in the Spanish Mission architectural style. The school has been undergoing a multimillion-dollar facilities modernization, with a new library, completed in late 2005. Small renovations, such as the fitting of metal doors in place of old wooden ones, were completed over the summer of 2006. The athletic facilities, such as the gym, swimming pool, football field, and locker rooms have now completed renovation. A new school office has also been constructed. In 2012, the school undertook a massive modernization and renovation of the campus, completed in the spring of 2014. A new field, track, and stadium were built along with a new student union and newly renovated cafeteria, which saw the addition of six classrooms to the campus.Vance Walberg (Class of 1974) — Pepperdine University men's basketball coach
Sheryl Johnson (Class of 1975) — Stanford field hockey coach and USA Field Hockey player of the year
Beth A. Simmons (Class of 1976) — professor and academic
Brian Hall (Class of 1979) — World Cup and MLS soccer referee
Justina Chen Headley (Class of 1986) — writer
Ron Reis (Class of 1988) — former WCW wrestler, Monta Vista basketball player
Ryan Hancock (Class of 1989) — professional baseball player for the California Angels
Andrew Martinez (Class of 1990) — "The Naked Guy" at the University of California, Berkeley, Monta Vista football player
DJ Patil (Class of 1993) — Chief Data Scientist of the United States
Matthew Axelson (Class of 1994) — Navy SEAL awarded the Navy Cross
Dennis Fong (Class of 1995) — professional computer game player and gaming site webmaster
Stephanie Sheh (Class of 1995) — voice actress
Dylan Fergus (Class of 1998) — actor
Daniel Puder (Class of 1999) — MMA fighter
Kyle Kingsbury (Class of 2000) — UFC fighter
Robert Rothbart (Class of 2004), Bosnian-Israeli-Serbian professional basketball player playing center for Ironi Nahariya in Israel
Mizuki Hamada (Class of 2008) — professional soccer player for the Urawa Red Diamonds