Squaw Valley Academy


Squaw Valley Academy was an international, college-prep boarding school located in Olympic Valley, California, United States, near Lake Tahoe. It offered rigorous academics coupled with outdoor sports and activities, to give students a foundation for academic and personal success. SVA was fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). 100% of Squaw Valley Academy graduates earn college acceptance.

Squaw Valley Academy was founded in 1978 by Donald Rees, who also founded the Yosemite Institute in Yosemite National Park, and the Headlands Institute in the Marin Headlands near Sausalito, California. For over thirty years, Squaw Valley Academy was a staple at Lake Tahoe and has enrolled students from all over the world. In 2020, Squaw Valley Academy became Lake Tahoe Preparatory School.

The school was located on 2.8 acres and has five on-campus buildings; students have access to four. Three buildings have ground level classrooms and offices, while the second and third levels are dormitory rooms. The fourth is the administrative building, with offices and the dining hall on the ground level, and offices and classrooms on the second level. The fifth building, located at the rear of the property, is the maintenance building. Adjacent to the school is a county-owned recreational park, which includes a full-size AstroTurf soccer field, children's playground, tennis courts and picnic area.


The Academy's primary focus was on college preparation for high school students. SVA was fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

SVA provides students with rigorous academics as well as Advanced Placement (AP) courses, ESL for international students, an Academic Learning Center for struggling students, college counseling throughout the whole college application process and SAT prep. SVA is also a Certified SAT testing location.

Students eat breakfast before attending morning classes Monday through Friday, eat lunch, and depart campus for supervised afternoon activities. They return to campus for dinner, and after a brief rest, they gather for mandatory, two-hour study hall, Sunday through Thursday nights. Students use study hall to finish their coursework from the day, prepare for the coming class the following day, write and research reports, and gain further instruction on course topics from teachers.

100% of graduates of Squaw Valley Academy earn college acceptance.


The school mascot is the brown bear. Squaw Valley Academy offers a wide range of sports. Male students may participate in intramural soccer and basketball. Students who wish to compete on a recreational level may enjoy other athletics during the spring, summer and fall seasons including tennis, disc golf, ultimate, road cycling, mountain biking, skateboarding, rock climbing, hiking, rafting, kayaking and dry-land training for competitive ski and snowboard racers.

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