Jose Antonio Vargas Elementary

Current projects

None for Summer 2024

School Year 2023-24

Summer 2023 construction postcard (Spanish postcard)

Outdoor Greening and Learning Spaces

It’s important that our schoolyards are flexible and dynamic spaces that support equitable, diverse learning and recreational activities, which enhance the physical and mental well-being of students and promote a connection to  our natural world. In the 2023-24 school year, MVWSD embarked on creating outdoor greening and learning spaces at each school that will provide shade, plants and outdoor areas for learning and play. Click here to learn more about the process, timeline and community input process.

Tree Replacement Project
The trees along N. Whisman Rd. dropped pine cones that damage cars and were a danger to people. After a community input meeting on June 28 and discussions at public Board of Trustees meetings, a tree replacement project was undertaken. MVWSD is working with consultants on a greening project that was approved by the Board of Trustees in February 2023.  The goal is to install new trees at a 2:1 ratio and expand green cover into campus as space permits.

Beginning Nov. 27, 2023, the field gates will be locked during the school day as part of a new perimeter controls system. The public will continue to have access to school fields in the evenings and on weekends through a system of automatic locking/unlocking gates. For student and staff safety, it's very important for our school to limit points of entry during school hours. Additionally, staff members will be able to access classrooms and offices using key cards, instead of keys. If gates malfunction, call (650) 526-3248 x1004.

MUR Roll Up Door Project
Addition of roll up door to Vargas Multi-Use Building.

Window Replacement Project
When the buildings were constructed, there were no approved operable windows allowed by the Division of the State Architect at the time. The code has since changed and installation of operable windows happened May-July 2023. 

School year 2022-23


A new, approximately 900-square foot storage shed is being built on campus on the west side of the field close to the MUR/car entrance this year. Construction is planned for February-June 2023

Security Cameras
Security cameras in public areas were installed at all school sites as a way to increase safety for students and staff members by deterring misconduct and preventing vandalism. Members of the schools’ communities were engaged in a series of feedback meetings in Winter 2022.

2022 Construction Projects

Vargas construction projects postcard
Click here for a postcard describing Vargas' projects (English)
Click here for a postcard describing Vargas' projects (Spanish)

Click here for the Vargas tree replacement project presentation

2020-21 Construction Projects

(Funded by Measure T)

link to Vargas construction postcard
Click here for a postcard describing Vargas' projects

Click here for a postcard describing Vargas' projects (Spanish/español)

Measure T, the $259 million bond issue passed in 2020, included plans for a variety of projects that will increase safety, efficiency and provide for short-term growth at our schools. 

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Our schools’ HVAC systems were updated to include MERV-13 filters, which is the highest-grade filter available for our units, or air purifiers with filtration ratings at least as high as the MERV-13.   Additionally dampers on all of our units are open to full capacity and will pull in outside air.
Vargas' solar array near the playground structures is complete. Not only will these structures support solar panels to save the district $600,000 annually in electrical costs, they will provide much-needed shade.  Project start: Summer 2021. Click here for a map of the solar areas.

New lights and/or bollard style light posts to illuminate pedestrians’ path of travel between campus and parking lots will be added. Need determined by photometric survey data. This additional lighting is an important safety measure for staff members and guests using the campus in the evenings and winter late afternoons. Project start: Fall 2021

Parking cover
COVID has also slowed escalation, creating cost savings for MVWSD and allowing us to add needed items as Priority 1 projects. The trees along N. Whisman Rd. drop pine cones on cars and are a danger to people. Installation of a parking cover structure will protect both people and cars from debris and allow trees to remain. The new 4,500 square foot steel shade structure includes LED lighting on its underside to illuminate the parking area. Project start: December 2021/January 2022. Click here for a diagram of the parking cover.

School sign move
Due to the installation of poles for a traffic signal at Pacific Ave., the school sign is no longer easily seen from the road. The sign moved further north on Whisman Rd. Project start: Summer 2021. Click here for a diagram of the school sign project. 

Additional Storage
New approximately 400-square foot sheds/storage areas are in design currently. The intent is to match adjacent buildings. 

Security cameras 
One of the projects identified in the Mountain View Whisman School District's Master Facility Plan and the Measure T Bond was the need for security cameras in public areas at all school sites as a way to increase safety for students and staff members by deterring misconduct and preventing vandalism. Members of the schools’ communities will engage in a series of feedback meetings through Jan. 2022 before the plan for security cameras is finalized.

2018-19 New Campus and Synthetic Turf Field

(Funded by Certificates of Participation)

Background On June 16, 2016, the Board authorized initiation of the design process for the new school. The Board voted in 2015 to open it as a neighborhood school in fall of 2019.  Jose Antonio Vargas Elementary was completed in 2019, and houses kindergarten through fourth grade beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, and will add fifth grade in 2020-21. The financing for this new campus is supported by revenue the District earns from property that it leases.

The school is named for Jose Antonio Vargas, a former Mountain View resident and a Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist who is also an immigration rights activist.

The school's mascot is the Golden Owls.

Who attends? 
Capacity and grade levels: 450 students in kinder-fifth grades in 2020-21. Student attendance boundaries were determined as part of district-wide boundary revisions. Click here for more information.

Construction complete

The school is open.

Pictures from July 25, 2019
picture of Vargas MUR roompicture of the exterior Vargas
picture of Vargas classroom exteriorpicture of Vargas Office

The school has a new electronic sign. Funding for construction and capital improvements, like school signs, come from restricted funds that can be used only for that purpose. The District used an innovative approach to piggyback on existing, competitive local government contracts to lower the sign cost and expedite installation.

The school has two play structures that will be used for each the kinders and grades 1-5. Additional playground equipment has been added to accommodate the needs of our students in grades 1-5.  The courtyard area and blacktop will provide sufficient additional space for students to use during recess, in addition to the field. Field construction took place in Summer 2019 through December 2019.

Construction has begun on a new school, Jose Antonio Vargas Elementary, at 220 N. Whisman Road, next to the former site of Slater Elementary (currently leased to a daycare).  Building construction work began in October 2018. The school is scheduled for completion in August 2019. 

To learn more about Jose Antonio Vargas Elementary's boundaries, click here.



Click here for the Vargas Master Site Plan
Click here for Vargas Exterior Views


School organization resources

Your questions have answers here, Nov. 19, 2018 (incluye español)
Vargas PTA job descriptions (incluye español)
Click here for the Nov. 8, 2018 organizational meeting presentation


Vargas school groundbreaking
The Board of Trustees held a groundbreaking ceremony for the new school on Thursday, April 26, 2018. 

school thought bubble
Community members, staff members and parents in spring 2018 shared their opinions about the important attributes and contributions of a potential person/namesake for this new school, as well as the traits of its new principal through a ThoughtExchange/online conversation. Click here to view the results of this online community conversation. 


For the informational postcard sent to the Slater neighborhood, click here (en español)

School design process/timeline
Residents and staff members met to give feedback concepts (see below)

Dec. 5, 2016____Community Meeting #1 at Board Room
Jan. 5, 2017____Board of Trustees review of concept
Jan. 9, 2017____Community Meeting #2, at 6:30 p.m., Theuerkauf Library
Feb. 2, 2017____Board of Trustees review of concept #2
Feb. 16, 2017___Board of Trustees consider approval of conceptual design

Construction timeline
vargas construction timeline

Preliminary concepts were discussed with participants in the Dec. 5, 2016 community meeting. The Board of Trustees gave final input on the conceptual designs on Feb. 2, 2017. District staff and architects refined modified concept 1C for approved by the Board at its Feb. 16, 2017 meeting. 

Google preschool program at existing Gladys Avenue campus will remain.

The District is talking with the City of Mountain View about traffic improvements to North Whisman Avenue
o Alignment of Slater campus entrance driveway with Pacific Drive
o New traffic signal at Pacific Drive
o Pedestrian crosswalks
o Bike lanes

Campus Facilities Features 
o Administration building (offices, meeting rooms, health center, support services, staff room, network equipment)
o Multi-Use building (Student Nutrition kitchen, student eating area, assembly space, stage)
o Library building
o Kinder complex including three (3) classrooms with restrooms and dedicated play yard
o Fifteen (15) general education classrooms in 2-story buildings
o Two (2) Flexible-Use classrooms
o Restrooms and storage spaces
o Paved play yard
o Age-appropriate play structures
o Synthetic turf play fields
o Parking lot
o Curb-side pick-up/drop-off lanes
o Bike cage
o Teaching gardens
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