Principal's Message



Dear Irvine Families,

Welcome to Plaza Vista and our 21st session! Plaza Vista opened its doors in 1999 as a year-round option for Irvine students with a focus on: community, the arts, and academics. Today, Plaza Vista is a neighborhood school with many of the traditions from its outset continuing to thrive. We’re honored to serve your children here at Plaza Vista and endeavor to provide the highest quality educational experience we can envision.

Plaza Vista is a California Gold Ribbon School, a (twice awarded) California Distinguished School, and an Educational Results Partnership and Campaign for Business and Education Excellence California Honor Roll School. Our students' achievement on standardized exams consistently ranks amongst the highest in the state (like other Irvine schools!). Plaza Vista is the only school in the district currently to feature ten grades- transitional kindergarten through 8th grade.

Science specialists and science teachers serve students starting in 4th grade. Our supportive PTA helps fund technology, art, lunch time activities, coding classes, supplementary curriculum, and more! IPSF helps fund numerous instructional aides (with many of those staff holding teacher credentials), music classes for all students, and more!

Computers are available for students in all grades along with Chromebooks and iPads (thanks in part to our amazing PTA). We are a 1:1 (computing device per student) school in grades three and up!

Plaza Vista’s Positive Behavior Intervention System framework is PRIDE- Partnership, Respect, Integrity, Determination, and Empathy. Our entire student body benefits from our middle school students’ leadership via student council, PRIDE mentoring, National Junior Honors Society, No One Eats Alone Day, recycling work, and more.

Our amazing PTA strengthens community and provides resources for our school program in numerous ways including our renown annual carnival in May (please join us!), the Jog-a-thon, the annual membership drive, family nights (which have included a magic show, bowling, restaurant nights, a “drive-in” movie, bingo, and many more), guest speakers, the book fair, assemblies, bake sales, lunch-time activities and games, field trips, Red Ribbon Week, and more!

The Mission Statement of Plaza Vista is: All staff through collaboration, shared leadership, and while engaging in intellectual risk-taking, will support every child. An unofficial but hallowed slogan here painted in the hallway is: We take care of this place, we take care of each other.

Some of the new and exciting things for 2019/2020:

-Some new and amazing staff!

-A new schedule and slightly altered calendar.  More information is here.

-Increased support for our students that speak a language other than English at home.

-Increased social-emotional support for our students (and an accompanying PTA theme- details coming soon!).

-New and improved middle school electives including calligraphy.

-High school Latin 1 for interested 8th graders.

-The option for students to purchase breakfast on campus.  Families can apply for free or reduced meals confidentially here.

-A new social studies curriculum adoption.

-A science curriculum pilot for grades 6-8 (with plans to adopt the best pilot in 20-21).

We also feature after school classes and childcare (before and after school) on site. If you are new to the area and/or are interested in a tour, please contact our front office.



Plaza Vista School- home of Stars!

James Parker, Principal

(949) 936-6950


Mr. Parker’s Top 10 Suggested Readings 2019-2020:

  • Daily 5: Fostering Literacy Independence in the Elementary Grades by Boushey & Moser

  • How Google Works by Rosenberg & Schmidt

  • Insanely Simple: The Obsession That Drives Apple’s Success by Segal

  • Leaders of Learning: How District, School, and Classroom Leaders Improve Student Achievement by DuFour & Marzano

  • Linchpin: Are You Indispensable by Godin

  • Mathematical Mindsets: Unleashing Students’ Potential through Creative Math, Inspiring Messages and innovative Thinking by Professor Boaler (Stanford)

  • Square Peg: My Story and What it Means for Raising Innovators, Visionaries, & Outside-Of-The-Box Thinkers by Professor Rose (Harvard)

  • Steal Like An Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Kleon

  • Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice From the Best in the World by Ferris

  • The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Pressfield


Have a suggested title? Please let Mr. Parker know!