Current News at DVA

After School Activities


Several after school activities are getting ready to kick off the year at DVA. Students need parent/guardian permission to participate in after school activities. 

Fit Kids Club (Grades 3-5)- Mrs. Tracy and Ms. Patrick: Mondays and Wednesdays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Eagle Choir (Grades 4-5) - Mr. Hall: Tuesdays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Computer Science/Coding (Grade 5)- Ms. Franklin: Tuesdays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Art Club (Grade 4-5)- Mr. Johnson: Mondays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Digital Art (Grades 4-5)- Mr. Johnson: Wednesdays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Special Olympics Practice- Mrs. Tracy and Ms. Patrick: Tuesdays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Fifth Grade Homework Club- Ms. Carrington: Mondays, 2:50-3:30 PM

Support our Furry Friends


Kindness is in full swing as we "Support our Furry Friends" from the Humane Society of Yuma. Our hearts are full as students bring in food, toys, blankets, collars, and other needs for our furry friends. We are grateful to help our community. Check out our DVA Facebook page for pictures and updates.

Mid-Year Check Point


Conferences will be held the week of January 9-13, 2017. Notices have already gone out requesting parents to schedule a conference. This will be a time to review mid-year data and discuss the growth your child is making towards mastering grade level standards. Thank you for partnering with us for your child's success.



It is exciting to measure how much we have grown. Just like using a measuring tape to see how many inches we have grown, we use MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) to measure our academic growth. Students in grades 3-5 will take their MAP the week of May 2-6. Students in grades K-2 will take MPG (Map for Primary Grades) during the week of May 9-13. We are proud of our students!

Twilight Arts Exhibition Thursday, April 21st


Come experience a night with the fine arts! See your child's artwork on display, while hearing live music and poetry readings. Refreshments are also available! Thursday, April 21st, from 6-7 pm in Character Central (Desert View Academy). We hope to see you all there!


Pennies for Patients


Monday, February 1, 2016, "Work out for a Cure". Students and staff may pay $1 to wear workout clothes to school. All proceeds go towards our Pennies for Patients Fundraiser.

Our Pennies for Patients campaign runs February 1-29 at Desert View Academy. We are excited to partner with the Leukemia Lymphoma Society (LLS).  LLS exists to find cures and ensure access to treatments for blood cancer patients. LLS is the voice for all blood cancer patients and works to ensure access to treatments for all blood cancer patients.

DVA has currently contributed over $87,00 to LLS. Wow! This year, our goal is $250 per classroom, and $10,00 overall. Please join us as we work together to find a cure for Leukemia and Lymphoma!



Upcoming Events


Welcome back! We are entering a very busy season at DVA. Please take note of the following important events:

Parent/Teacher Conferences: January 11-15. Please schedule with your child's teacher. Mid year MAP data will be discussed.

DVA Spelling Bee, January 18. Student representatives from each class in grades 3-5 will participate to decide a winner who will represent DVA at the Yuma County Spelling Bee.

100th Day of School Celebration, January 20. Students and staff will celebrate 100 days of learning. 

Second Quarter Awards celebrations: January 19-22.
Third grade, Tuesday, 1/19 at 8:10AM
Second Grade, Tuesday, 1/19 at 12:30PM
First Grade, Wednesday, 1/20. 1.1, 1.2, 1.3 at 12:30PM, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6 at 1:30PM
Fourth Grade, Friday, 1/22 at 8:10AM
Fifth Grade, Friday, 1/22 at 9:10AM
Kindergarten, Friday, 1/22. K1, K2, K3 at 12:30PM, K4, K5, K6 at 1:30PM 

National School Choice Week, January 25-29. We celebrate the right to choose your child's school, regardless of boundaries, academic levels, or rules imposed by others.

Great Kindness Challenge, January 25-29. DVA will be joining others globally to complete acts of kindness.

Pennies for Patients, February 1-19. Annual fundraiser for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society. DVA has been the top fundraiser in Arizona for the past several years. This year, we will continue our efforts to break records and give "Because we care".

McTeacher Night, February 4. Come out to McDonalds on 4th Ave to join DVA staff in taking over. All proceeds go to Pennies for Patients. 

Yuma County Science Expo, February 5 at AWC. Winners from DVA Science expo will represent at the county level.

Family Game Night, February 18. Each grade level will prepare games and activities for all to enjoy. The event is free.

See you at DVA!

AzMERIT Update


AzMERIT Results: What Desert View Academy Families Can Expect

Our school is dedicated to giving a world-class education that ensures your child is on track to succeed this year and in the future. Over the past few years, we have been working to raise the bar to ensure that our students are prepared to be successful not just in the next grade, but also in college, career and in life. We’ve implemented higher standards and have asked our students to use their critical thinking, problem-solving, and creativity skills more than they ever have before.

Last spring, our students took a new assessment, which is one tool that we use to see if our children are on track to succeed. The assessment is called AzMERIT and it took the place of AIMS in reading, writing and math.

You should expect to receive your child’s test scores by November 20th.

Since this is the first year of the assessment and we’re asking students to know and be able to do more, you can expect that test scores will be different than before and may appear lower than expected. The test scores are giving us really important information that we can use along with your child’s grades, homework, and class participation to understand how your child is doing in meeting higher expectations.

This change may feel tough right now, but it is the right thing to do to help our kids succeed now and in the future. AzMERIT is helping to give us more accurate information about how our kids are doing and where they need more support – making all of us better. Teachers and parents can use student scores to make sure they’re doing all the right things to support student achievement.

Over time, each DVA graduate will be stronger and more competitive in college, career and life. No one likes taking tests – but AzMERIT is one important way for us to understand how our children are doing, and find ways to improve learning in our schools.

To learn more about the test and what your child needs to know to be successful, visit

PE Uniform


Students will participate in PE on the following days:

Tuesday: Second Grade, Third Grade

Wednesday: First Grade

Friday: Fourth Grade, Fifth Grade, Kindergarten

Students should come to school wearing the PE uniform consisting of gray PE shirt, gray shorts/sweatpants, white socks and sneakers on their designated PE day.


Upcoming Events


Please join us on Monday, August 3 at 9 AM for our Grand Opening.


Open House will be held from 10 AM-2 PM on Monday, August 3. This is an opportunity to meet your teachers and visit your classrooms. Tables will be set up for lunch eligibility, traffic cards, PTL, spirit wear, yearbook pre-sale, and general information.


Wednesday, August 5, is for Kindergarten students only. School begins at 7:45 AM and will dismiss at 12:15 PM. Lunch will not be served.


Thursday and Friday, August 6 and 7 is for all students, grades K-5. The first bell rings at 7:45 AM. The tardy bell rings at 8 AM. All students will dismiss at 12:15 PM. Lunch will not be served.


Monday, August 10, we will begin our regular full day schedule, 7:45 AM- 2:50 PM for all students.


DVA New Site Construction Pictures


Have you seen the progress on the new campus at 3777 West 16th Street? Check back often to see updated pictures of our new school being built.

Enrollment for 2015-16 School Year


We will begin receiving applications on January 26, 2015.

Applications may be dropped off at the school office, scanned and emailed to, or faxed to 928.314.1086

If you have any questions or would like to schedule a tour please email Margot Delgado, registrar, at or call the school office to arrange – 928.314.1102.


Desert View Academy Breaks Ground on New Site


Posted: Thursday, October 30, 2014 6:32 pm | Updated: 11:29 pm, Thu Oct 30, 2014.

Desert View Academy broke ground Thursday on a new school site, set to officially open its doors in the fall of 2015.

Posted: Thursday, October 30, 2014 6:32 pm | Updated: 11:29 pm, Thu Oct 30, 2014.

Desert View Academy broke ground Thursday on a new school site, set to officially open its doors in the fall of 2015.

During the opening invocation of the groundbreaking ceremony Thursday, lead pastor of Oasis Church Bob VanHorn said that in a field that once grew melons, grass and hay, the charter school will be built upon that same land to cultivate the learning of young children.

An estimated $10 million project, the school will sit on 12 acres of land at the southeast corner of 16th Street and Avenue C, in an area where about a third of the school’s current students reside.

Rick Ogston, CEO of Carpe Diem Schools, said, “We’re proud of our reputation and we’re proud to be a part of this community. ... We stand here today as a community of friends and as one of Arizona’s top-rated elementary schools in the state, and we’re proud of that as well. That wasn’t something that we did by ourselves; that was something that we all did together.”

He noted that while the intention of Thursday’s ceremony was to celebrate the start of construction on a new school that will replace their current campus at 2363 S. Kennedy Lane, the idea of a new and bigger site wouldn’t have been possible without the dedication of their staff.

“This campus would be meaningless without the sea of azure before you. What is azure? That’s the color of these shirts. That’s somewhere between cyan and blue,” he said pointing at his own shirt, the same shade worn by all staff present at the groundbreaking event.

“Those people, the support staff, the teachers, the leaders of Desert View Academy, they’re the ones who really are the reason why we’re here today and have laid the foundation for our school.”

Ogston said that Desert View Academy first began as Juniper Tree Academy in 2000 with 150 students and was founded by Wanda and Emilio Marrero.

The new 55,000-square-foot building will have the capacity for about 940 students in kindergarten through fifth grade. The school currently have an enrollment of about 540 students and plans to add a few additional classrooms each year due to growing enrollment and waiting lists at many grade levels.

“We don’t want to just double in size automatically, because we want to keep our culture and kind of grow a little bit at a time. We’re looking forward to having a little more elbow room. We use every nook and cranny here, every closet,” Desert View Academy Principal Deb Weigel said in a recent article about the existing school site. “We’ve outgrown every space, and we use this well. ... We do a great job here. This year we were an A school for the third year in a row. … We make it work because we’re a team, but we’re looking forward to having more room.”

Construction will begin in December with the project expected to be completed by May 30, 2015. Staff will begin moving into the facility over the summer to accommodate an August 2015 grand opening. The project was taken on by Bouma USA, which recently built a new Carpe Diem school in Indianapolis.

“I look forward to standing here again with you in the summer of 2015, on a day that will most likely be much hotter than this, as we celebrate the magnificent grand opening, but the difference between today and the day of the grand opening will be a huge, indoor, air-conditioned facility to celebrate and educate kids,” Ogston said.

Chris Weigel, Carpe Diem public information officer, said that it is currently unknown what the school will do with the modular classrooms on the current Desert View Academy campus. The school owns the modular facilities and is leasing the existing property from Immanuel Southern Baptist Church.

Three acres on the new school property will be used to create a grassy field that can be used by the school as well as the community.

Sarah Womer can be reached at or 539-6858. Find her on Twitter at @YSSarahWomer.


KSWT 13 News Video: Planning for our New Campus


After City Council approved the zoning for the new campus, KSWT 13 paid a visit to DVA.


Desert View Academy plans to build new school


Posted: Friday, August 15, 2014 9:30 pm 

Pending approval by the Yuma City Council, Desert View Academy is planning to build a new school set to open in the fall of 2015.

An estimated $10 million project, the campus would sit on 12 acres of land on what is now an agriculture site on the southeast corner of 16th Street and Avenue C.

Carpe Diem Public Information Officer Chris Weigel said that the idea of a new campus had been discussed over the last year and a half, as the existing campus has waiting lists at many grade levels and growing enrollment. The school’s parking lot and traffic congestion were also factors because of the limited space at the academy’s current location.

After beginning negotiations with the city of Yuma in December and meeting with the city’s Community Development Department, school officials also completed the necessary traffic impact analyses as well as geotechnical surveys and liquefaction tests on the land.

The school has also been working with the builder, Bouma USA, which recently constructed a new Carpe Diem school in Indianapolis, to determine what type of facility would be the best fit for the student population. A neighborhood meeting was held with residents from the area, all of whom voiced support for the project, Chris Weigel said. He noted that a third of the school’s current students reside in that area.

In addition, the school has taken the project to the Planning and Zoning Commission, which is recommending that the city council rezone the land from agriculture to low density residential property. Chris Weigel said that the school looked at a number of other locations around Yuma County to build a new school, from out in the foothills to near the Yuma International Airport and the Yuma Palms Regional Center, but said the property on the corner of 16th Street and Avenue C was ultimately what the school was looking for.

“We like the fact that it’s on major thoroughfares. We like the fact that it’s surrounded by residential,” he said. “We’re very pleased with the location that we’re getting, and we’re looking forward to getting it up and going.”

In preparation for the opening of a new K-5 campus, Desert View Academy Principal Deb Weigel said their existing school eliminated sixth-grade classes this year. She said it made sense to divide the school in that way because the Arizona College and Career Ready Standards are focused on K-5 standards and separately on sixth-12th grade standards. She said that their sixth-grade students are now attending other area middle schools.

“We were able to add, this year, an extra kindergarten, first- and second-grade class – kind of in preparation for our new school where we’ll have more room,” Deb Weigel said. “With the new campus, we’ll be able to add more classrooms, so we’ll be able to service more families.”

With the new 55,000-square-foot property, she said the school plans to add a few additional classrooms each year.

“We don’t want to just double in size automatically, because we want to keep our culture and kind of grow a little bit at a time,” she said.

Desert View Academy first opened in 2000 with a total of 150 students. This year, it currently has 540 students enrolled. With the new campus, when all of the additional classrooms are filled, the school will have a capacity of about 940 students.

“We’re looking forward to having a little more elbow room. We use every nook and cranny here, every closet,” said Deb Weigel. “We’ve outgrown every space, and we use this well, and to have a new building where we can breathe and really do what we do. We do a great job here. This year we were an A school for the third year in a row.”

Deb Weigel said that she’s also excited about being able to utilize the additional space to expand art, music, physical education, health and technology classes.

“Where some of the other schools are cutting that out, we believe that it’s important to keep that in.”

She said the current teachers of those subjects go from room to room with a cart because they don’t have specific rooms dedicated to those classes.

“We make it work, because we’re a team, but we’re looking forward to having more room,” she said.

Chris Weigel explained that three of the acres on the school’s property will be used to create a grassy field that can be used by the school as well as the community.

Carpe Diem Chief Operations Officer Ryan Hackman said that the school is in the process of finishing the bonding process to pay for the new school. He noted, however, that the bond, which is over $10 million, would not go to voters for approval as it would with a traditional public school.

“We pay for it out of our regular maintenance and operation costs that come in from our state equalization funding. … So we have to build that into our regular operating budget, and we repay it over the course of 30 years or less. We certainly intend to do it in less.”

Chris Weigel said that it is currently unknown what the school will do with the modular classrooms on the existing Desert View Academy campus. The school owns the modular facilities and is leasing the existing property from Immanuel Southern Baptist Church.

Desert View Academy Earns "A"


Congratulations DVA families! We are once again rated as an "A" school by the State of Arizona. To see more schools and their ratings, go to

Shear Determination


This wasn’t an ordinary haircut.

While Deb Weigel, principal of Desert View Academy, went to her campus Thursday morning with a full head a hair of hair, she left later that afternoon with a completely shaved head.

Last year, Weigel challenged her students to raise $12,000 for the Pennies for Patients program through the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS), saying she would kiss a pig if they achieved their goal. The students blew the top off the goal by raising $12,583.

She upped the ante this year and put out a five-week challenge for the more than 500 students on her campus to reach a fundraising goal of $13,000 for the same cause. If they reached the amount, she said she would shave off her locks.

Not only did the students meet their goal, they far exceeded the amount by almost $1,000 for a grand total of $13,935.24.

When asked why she chose to shave her head, Weigel said that she wanted to stand in solidarity with those undergoing chemotherapy. She said that the topic was something she felt personally about, as her own younger sister, Julie Christenson, just recently finished her third round of chemotherapy in battling stage 4 breast cancer – causing her to lose all of her hair.

Moments before having her head shaved in front of the whole student body of kindergarten through sixth-grade students during an outdoor assembly, Weigel addressed the students and said, “When I don’t have any hair, I don’t know what I’m going to look like. I might look like an alien, but I’ll still be me, and you don’t have to be afraid of that. So when you see someone with cancer who doesn't have their hair, don’t be afraid to go up and talk to them, because it will still be them inside.”

Weigel explained that staff members on campus also wore wigs or dyed their hair different colors for the assembly to show that no matter what your hair looks like – or lack thereof – or your skin color, height, weight, or abilities, the students should treat others the way they would want to be treated.

She continued, “When you go through chemotherapy, often you do lose your hair, and when you lose your hair, sometimes you may not feel beautiful or you might think people are looking at you strangely. But we know that you’re still you inside. … I’m shaving my head as a promise to you but also to stand alongside those that don’t have a choice that lose their hair.”

Diane McLaughlin, LLS campaign director for the school and youth programs, said that this year’s fundraisers will make Desert View Academy the top fundraising school in Arizona for the third year in a row. To honor this accomplishment, McLaughlin recognized the campus with an award as well as a “Champions of Change” banner.

She said that although the statewide fundraising initiative with participating schools lasts until June, the second-place school is trailing by about $5,000.

“It’s phenomenal. Every year they do this,” she said about Desert View Academy. “This is 510 students. We have schools in larger areas with four and five times as many students, and they don’t even come close in their fundraising.”

Dollars raised from the school's fundraiser will go to benefit blood cancer research and provide services and support to leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma patients and their loved ones.

When Weigel asked students during the assembly to stand if they knew someone with cancer, almost 90 percent of the students stood to their feet.

“We will fight cancer,” Weigel responded.

McLaughlin, who said that she lost her mother to lymphoma, added, “On behalf of the patients and the families we serve, and on the behalf of the researchers that are trying to find a cure, I want to thank every student, every faculty member and every parent for your unbelievable support.”

Desert View Academy has raised a total of $76,126.79 since the school began their fundraising efforts for the cause in 2004.

This year, students raised funds in a myriad of ways, some by bringing in birthday money and funds received for chores and others from dollars collected from sponsors during their school running challenge.

While all 20 classrooms reached their goal of raising at least $300 and won a pizza party, Yesenia Larson’s kindergarten class raised the most on campus with $846.78. The class will also receive an Olive Garden party through the Pasta for Pennies program.

Sarah Womer can be reached at or 539-6858. Find her on Facebook or on Twitter at @YSSarahWomer.