Fountain Valley School of Colorado

6155 Fountain Valley School Road
Colorado Springs, CO 80911
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #1 - Fountain Valley School is a coed independent college preparatory school offering boarding and day programs for students grades 9-12. FVS was established in 1930 and is located on an 1,100-acre campus in Colorado Springs, Colo., approximately 70 miles (115 km) south of Denver. Colorado's mountain ski resorts are two hours to the west.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #1 - Fountain Valley School is a coed independent college preparatory school offering boarding and day programs for students grades 9-12. FVS was established in 1930 and is located on an 1,100-acre campus in Colorado Springs, Colo., approximately 70 miles (115 km) south of Denver. Colorado's mountain ski resorts are two hours to the west.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #2 - Fountain Valley School's riding program caters to all riders from competitive and experienced to never-ridden and the facilities for both horse and rider are first rate. Students can ride five days a week, English or Western, and compete in the IEA. Bring your horse to school with you or ride one of FVS's horses!
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #3 - Many of FVS's classes use the School's 1100-acre Prairie campus as an extension of the classroom. A 12:1 student-teacher ratio fosters strong connections and in-depth discussions across over 100 courses.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #4 - Fountain Valley School offers visual art classes in ceramics, sculpture, painting/drawing, jewelry-making (metal-smithing), photography, and film. The School's three-story Art Barn is dedicated solely to the pursuit of these fields.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #5 - Colorado Springs, a city consistently ranked one of the best places to live and work according to "U.S. News & World Report," sees more than 300 days of sunshine annually!
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #6 - Interim Expeditions are one of the most meaningful experiences students will encounter throughout their time at FVS. Each spring, groups of students and faculty participate in experiential learning adventures across the United States and around the globe. Service and learning are core components, along with fun!
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #7 - The FVS campus is defined by its Adobe architecture, a signature of the American West. Students make themselves at home in no time at all at Fountain Valley School, which offers 10 spacious, Adobe residential houses built for small groups of 16 to 20 students each.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #8 - The Fountain Valley School campus features stunning views of Pikes Peak, America's mountain.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #9 - Located just two hours from Fountain Valley's 1,100-acre campus on the Prairie, the Class of 1969 Mountain Campus is a learning landscape and lodge that brings students and faculty together each academic year in a spectacular setting at the foot of the majestic Collegiate Peaks.
Fountain Valley School of Colorado Photo #10 - In addition to traditional athletic offerings, Fountain Valley's location in the west allows for non-traditional sports like Mountain Biking, Skiing, and Climbing!
Explore a world-class education in a world-class setting.  Located on a secure 1,100-acre Prairie at the base of the Rocky Mountains, Fountain Valley serves a diverse, global community of boarding and day students grades 9 through 12 across more than 20 countries and 20 states.
Students are encouraged to take ownership of their education and are empowered to map their own paths to success at this college preparatory institution. The School's challenging academic programs promote independent thinking, globally-minded inquiry, problem-solving, experiential learning, and creative expression. Fountain Valley School's 1,100-acre Prairie campus provides abundant opportunities for student-athletes to pursue a number of mountain sports inspired by a western lifestyle like equestrian (English and Western), climbing, mountain biking, and skiing, as well as traditional sports. Students also take advantage of FVS's Mountain Campus located just two hours west near Buena Vista, Colo. for recreational and experiential learning.

Quick Stats (2024)

  • Grades: (Boarding) 9-12
  • Enrollment: 240 students
  • Yearly Tuition (Boarding Students): $72,700
  • Yearly Tuition (Day Students): $39,000
  • Acceptance rate: 60%
  • Average class size: 12 students
  • Application Deadline: Dec. 15 / Feb. 1 / rolling
  • Source: Verified school update

School News

  • An Inside Look at 2024 Senior Capstone Presentations: Part 3 - 05/10/2024
    Riho K.'s Senior Capstone project on Game Design and Sound Engineering Through Everyday Objects consisted of designing the interactive narrative game, "A Yearlong Journey at Mountain Rally School of Ohio." ...moreSet in a high school setting, each player's decisions determine how their senior year will pan out. Riho's creativity stretched far as she added original details to the game, such as sound effects "made with the program called Specdrums, which can turn any color into sound," she explains. hide
  • An Inside Look at 2024 Senior Capstone Presentations: Part 2 - 05/09/2024
    Throughout her Senior Capstone, COVID-19's Impact on Social-Emotional Development, Lauren C. explored the impact of external stressors, particularly the COVID-19 pandemic, on the social-emotional development of infants and toddlers. "My ...morefindings revealed significant setbacks in language, social communication, fine motor skills, and social-emotional competencies among children born during the pandemic," said Lauren, who spent the semester examining disruptions to early childhood education, caregiver dynamics, and support service access due to COVID-19. hide
  • An Inside Look at 2024 Senior Capstone Presentations: Part 1 - 05/08/2024
    Will G. and Tanner M. collaborated on the Senior Capstone titled Road to Rock Stardom: Making Modern Music, as both worked diligently throughout the semester to achieve milestone goals in ...morethe music world, including writing lyrics, composing guitar riffs, and recording original audio. hide
  • FVS Thespians Present Winter Musical, "Matilda" - 02/28/2024
    The cast and crew of Fountain Valley School's 2024 winter musical, "Matilda," performed before a packed house in the Performing Arts Center each evening from Thursday, February 22 through Saturday, ...moreFebruary 24, 2024. This outstanding performance had FVS critics raving, "This was a fabulous production! Bravo FVS students and faculty for your talent, energy, skill, and passion. I was deeply impressed!" hide
  • Living Off the Land: Sustainability in Academics at FVS - 02/20/2024
    Since 1930, Fountain Valley School has utilized its sprawling campus as a "living laboratory." Through a partnership between the School's faculty and in-house land management and grounds crews, FVS's new ...morefreshman curriculum aims to foster one-of-a-kind learning experiences for ninth-grade students at home on its 1,100-acre Prairie. hide
  • Grant Monies Take Students Lightyears From Campus - 01/22/2024
    Thanks to a generous grant from the Lightner Sams Foundation, science classes at Fountain Valley School have gotten a whole lot brighter over the past several months! Using funds from ...morethe grant, the School purchased two telescopes and a portable 5" Newtonian reflector, along with soft cases, a solar filter, and a Wi-Fi module, for detailed viewing of planets, asteroids, and comets in our solar system, and deep-sky objects like galaxies and nebulae. hide
  • Food Rescue Program Promotes Community Partnership and Environmental Sustainability - 01/04/2024
    Founded by a graduating senior as part of a Capstone project in 2020, Fountain Valley Schools Food Rescue Program promotes sustainability among students and faculty while also benefiting the local ...morenonprofit organization known as Connections 4 Life. Students grades 9 through 12 gather after lunch once weekly to package, label, and deliver leftovers from the School Dining Hall to Connection 4 Life volunteers and employees, without whom the organization's Thursday Fresh Food Pantry would cease to exist. hide
  • Malia S. '24 Commits to the LIU Women's Equestrian Team - 11/11/2023
    After securing a remarkable high school record in English Riding throughout her four years at Fountain Valley School (FVS) in Colorado Springs, Colo., Malia S. '24, a young and accomplished ...morerider, has committed to joining the Division 1 Equestrian Team at Long Island University (LIU). hide
  • Jeffrey Brabec, Ph.D. '14: Carving His Own Destiny - 11/10/2023
    In his application to FVS, Jeffrey Brabec '14 said he wanted to be a writer and college professor, and his mom wrote that his academic weakness was in math. Could ...morethe then 13-year-old Jeff who struggled in math have ever imagined his future self as a Ph.D. neuroscientist? In his junior year at FVS, Jeff began to enjoy science. "I think college and grad school would have worked themselves out," says Jeff, "but I [underwent] a lot of educational and emotional growth at Fountain Valley. I had experiences there that I still talk about to this day and rely on in times of uncertainty. I truly think I would not be where I am today if I hadn't had the opportunity to attend Fountain Valley." hide
  • Nuin-Tara Key ’99: A Visionary Pioneer at the Forefront of Climate Change - 11/10/2023
    Her mother named her after a character in the book, "A Far Off Place," a young woman with exceptional strength and selflessness. While Nuin-Tara Key '99 would be too modest ...moreto acknowledge that the name suits her, her professional accomplishments creating and implementing public policies that impact the climate crisis affirm her mother's prescience. "I am optimistic that it is fully within our capacities to do what we need to do to address the climate crisis and to really drive the change that we need," says Nuin-Tara. hide
  • FVS Celebrates 23rd Annual Unity Day: A School-wide Event Focused on Inclusion, Listening, and Diversity - 10/30/2023
    Each year, Fountain Valley School, which is home to students representing approximately 24 countries and 29 states along with a diverse array of backgrounds, hosts a Unity Day to celebrate ...moreits community's various cultures and customs and to help students gain a deeper understanding of differences in race, class and gender. hide
  • FVS's Western Immersion Program: Inspiring A Deeper Connection to the Land and Community - 10/15/2023
    In the fall of 2023, Fountain Valley's Western Immersion Program celebrated its 27th anniversary. A true demonstration of learning beyond the classroom, the program takes place at FVS's remote Mountain ...moreCampus located at the foot of Colorad's Collegiate Peaks and includes three days of hands-on learning in the sciences, history, art and literature, as well as community-building activities. All lessons are designed to help students explore the intricate connections between the land and its people. hide
  • Author Dave Philipps '96 Presents at All-School - 02/01/2023
    While assigned summer reading may be a familiar-though perhaps begrudgingly necessary-summertime activity, it also serves as an anchor into classroom concepts that often drift away across the leisurely months of ...moresummer vacation. In the spirit of creating a sense of solidarity within our broader community, this year FVS instituted its first-ever community-wide summer read. All members of the faculty and student body read "Wild Horse Country" a non-fiction publication written by FVS alumnus, Dave Philipps `96.
    While much of Philipps` work focuses on the human impact of war, "Wild Horse Country" recounts the history of wild horses in the United States. The book outlines the presence of wild horses in the U.S. in great detail. It begins with their earliest ancestor-Hyracotherium, which lived about 55-45 million years ago-then continues on to the "myth" of the mustang found scattered throughout tales of the Wild West, then to the modern dilemma of wild horse relocation and overpopulation. For a community nestled amid sprawling prairie land that extends to the foothills of the Rocky Mountains-with a history deeply rooted in ranching and an active ranching community that manages over sixty horses-many of the tales contained within Wild Horse Country feel as though they could have taken place here on campus.In fact, the stories felt so visceral to those enjoying the summer read from the prairie-where our own horses could be observed silhouetted against the mountain skyline-it seemed more than likely that Philipps` book might have had its origins right here.
    Philipps, who has remained an active member of the FVS community since his graduation, joined us on campus at the beginning of the school year to present on his book. He spoke about his work as a journalist and offered some sage wisdom from one FVS graduate to the future graduates filling Lewis Perry Jr. Chapel. During his visit, students and faculty alike had the opportunity to partake in a Q&A with Philipps. When asked whether his time at Fountain Valley in any way influenced or inspired him to write Wild Horse Country, Philipps noted that, while it wasn`t his time at FVS itself that spurred the questions that led to the book, his time at FVS has influenced every part of his life since he graduated:My time at FVS was the most influential thing that ever happened to me, and not a week goes by that I don`t think about it. I guess it did [influence my book], because so much of FVS focused on the West that it made me forever interested in that subject."-David Philipps `96
    While FVS might not have been directly causative in the inception of Wild Horse Country, the chain of events that led to the fascinating and intricately detailed final product grants us an appreciation for the genuine curiosity that inspired the book perhaps even reminding us of what stories might be out there waiting for anyone willing to ask enough questions.Wild Horse Country began with Philipps` own determination to design a job comprised entirely of "field trips" to places that he wanted to go, "to poke around in stuff [he] had no business poking around in." Philipps made it his mission to come up with his own stories, so when he saw an announcement for a government wild horse adoption day in Canyon City, his curiosity was piqued, and he went to cover the story. Upon his arrival, Philipps said he, "witnessed big, government corrals filled with horses but there were only maybe six adopters." And it was with the answer to his question, what do they do with the rest of them, that "Wild Horse Country" first began.Philipps was fascinated by the idea that somewhere out there, there were government ranches filled with wild horses. But wild horses, Philipps noted, are "too far out there" to write about for the Gazette. The story remained in the back of his mind for about five years, until he received a one-year fellowship to begin working on his book. In its entirety, "Wild Horse Country" took about four years to complete.For Philipps, this was an opportunity to do something different. It was a break from his usual niche of writing about the military, and it offered a number of adventures that took him into some of the most remote parts of the country. An outdoor enthusiast, Philipps said that this was part of his motivation to write the book. He, "knew that [he] would get to go to some of the most beautiful places in the West, and places that [he] otherwise might not have reason to go to." Within his book, Philipps recounts his experiences of witnessing a helicopter round-up, searching the badlands for Hyracotherium jaw bones, and touring an active ranch that has been owned and operated by the same family for generations.His research unearthed a slew of American folk figures, including Wild Horse Annie-whose advocacy laid the groundwork for the laws that govern the treatment of wild horses and burros to this day-as well as Frank Litts-the first known wild-horse rights advocate-who repeatedly attempted to destroy a horsemeat canning factory in his efforts to protect the animals he loved. But although "Wild Horse Country" details numerous stories about mustangs and the American West, Philipps noted, "the most interesting thing [he] learned [during his research] was that the romantic myth that the wild horse was the partner of the cowboy was completely wrong. There had been a war going on between cowboys and wild horses for 150 years."During his All-School presentation, Philipps remarked on how, in the case of the wild horse, history created myth, myth created law, and law created a perverse reality that begs the question, "Why are we keeping thousands of wild animals in captivity at an insane expense in order to preserve something that is already wild and free?"Dave Philipps posing with his former English Teacher Dave Reynolds and current FVS students.When asked how he felt about being back at FVS to discuss his book, freshly read by the community, Philipps replied:I get to come back probably about once a year, and it`s always deeply emotional for me. This place is deeply unchanged. The heart of this community of learning and teaching and friendship is still here, and I still get choked up about it. It seems silly, but if you grow up in a place, it never loosens its grip on you, and it seizes me every time I come back."Philipps currently works as a journalist for the New York Times, and he has twice been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his work. He received his first award for national reporting in 2014 for his three-day series, "Other Than Honorable," which ran in the Colorado Springs Gazette and examined the treatment of injured American soldiers being discharged without military benefits. In 2022, Philipps, alongside a team of reporters, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for international reporting for a series that exposed how United States military airstrikes in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan caused thousands of civilian deaths that had never been publicly reported.
  • Major Accolades for FVS Science Student - 05/02/2022
    Fountain Valley School congratulates Tony T. `23 on his outstanding performance at the Pikes Peak Regional Science and Engineering Fair held on February 26, 2022 and the Colorado State Science ...moreand Engineering Fair held on April 7-8, 2022. hide
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School Overview

Definition of Terms | 2023 School Data
Fountain Valley School of Colorado
Boarding School Avg.
School Focus
College Preparatory
College Preparatory
Grades Offered (Boarding)
School Type
ADD/ADHD Support
Supports Learning Differences (LD)
Religious Affiliation
Year Founded
Campus Size
1100 acres
126 acres

Student Body

240 students
320 students
% Students of Color
% International Students
% Students Boarding
Average SAT Score
(Out of 1600)
* National Avg. »View
Average ACT score
(Out of 36)
*National Avg. »View
Offers Post-Grad Year

Academics and Faculty

Saturday Classes
Classroom Dress Code
No uniform
Average Class Size
12 students
* National Avg. »18
Student : Teacher Ratio
# of AP / Advanced Courses Offered
ESL Courses Offered
% Faculty with Advanced Degree
Summer Program Offered
Summer Program Details

Tuition Cost

Endowment Size
$50 million
$28 million
Yearly Tuition
(Boarding Students)
Yearly Tuition
(Day Students)
Tuition international students
Summer Program Cost
(Prices, which vary by session duration and by boarding and day student, start as low as $1,600 for two weeks, and include academic and recreational expenses, weekend excursions, adult supervision, meals, and living accommodations when applicable. Take advantage of our sibling discount, too!)
% Students on Financial Aid
Merit Scholarships Offered

Acceptance Rate

Application Deadline
Dec. 15 / Feb. 1 / rolling
Jan. 15
SSAT Required
Acceptance Rate
Director of Admissions
Alex Winnicker
Lindsey Ratliff

AP / Advanced Courses

# of AP / Advanced Courses Offered
2-D Studio Art, 3-D Studio Art, Advanced Biology, Advanced Calculus AB, Advanced Calculus BC, Advanced Chemistry, Advanced Chinese Language and Culture, Advanced English Literature and Composition, Advanced Environmental Science, Advanced French Language and Culture, Advanced Music Theory, Advanced Physics C: Mechanics, Advanced Precalculus, Advanced Spanish Language and Culture, Advanced Statistics, Advanced United States Government & Politics, Advanced United States History, Advanced World History, Anatomy and Physiology, and Trigonometry, Authority & Theories of Human Nature, Colorado Natural History, Financial Math/Economic Reasoning, Functions, Global Citizenship, Global Studies, Honors Algebra II, Honors Chemistry, Honors Discrete Mathematics, Honors Freedom, Honors Geometry, Honors Linear Algebra, Honors World History, International Relations, Mandarin I-III, Principles of Engineering, Robotics, Spanish I-III, Spanish IV: Hispanic History, Statistics, Sustainable Science, U.S. History: Origins to 1877, World History and Geography, World Societies



Total Extracurricular Organizations
Club or Organization:
Academic Honor Society, Admission Ambassador, Athenaea-Student Newspaper, Board Game Club, Environmental Club, LGBTQIA+, Matchwits, Math Club, Model United Nations, Student Cultural Organization, Student Government, The Owl (Yearbook), Varsity Club, Western and English

Arts and Music Programs:
Art Barn Assistants

College Matriculation

Year: 2019 - 2022
10 Most Popular College Choices  (# Enrolled)
Chapman University
Colorado State University
New York University
Northeastern University
Santa Clara University
Syracuse University
University of Colorado Boulder
University of Puget Sound
University of Toronto
University of Washington

School Notes

  • Exploration and learning on Fountain Valley School's 1,100-acre campus in the great American West builds an incredible foundation for personal growth. FVS faculty come from diverse backgrounds and offer high-level academics supplemented by their own professional experiences. Small class sizes allow for knowledge, growth, and discussions that stretch far beyond any had at schools that teach to the test, because that is not the metric used at FVS. Rather, FVS students learn by doing, as faculty emphasize experiential learning throughout the School's challenging curriculum. 
  • Fountain Valley School's Class of 1969 Mountain Campus, located approximately two hours west of Colorado Springs, serves as a learning landscape and lodge that invites adventure and brings students and faculty together in yet another spectacular setting throughout the academic year. Nestled at the foot of the majestic Collegiate Peaks, the Mountain Campus is the scenic homebase for many FVS outings, seminars, and class retreats, and a place for learning, camaraderie, and fun. Generations of students have bonded at this extraordinary place, and FVS alumni spanning the globe have dedicated their time and resources to the renovation and upkeep of this historic treasure. 
  • The combination of an international student body and Western setting is what makes Fountain Valley School truly unique. A purposeful approach to global education provides students with on-campus cultural events, excursions throughout the region, and opportunities for international travel each spring during Interim Expeditions. In addition, the School's world-class location offers a unique twist on the traditional boarding school experience by offering immediate access to countless natural resources and activities, including both English and Western Riding.
  • Fountain Valley's Prairie is home to approximately 60 School-owned horses and includes space for student-riders to board their own horse. Indoors and out, the accommodations for horse and rider, including one of the largest indoor arenas in the State, are vast. With the barn and riding facilities located in the same area as the athletic center, students are able to ride every day, which gives them an edge in the competitive arena.
  • Fountain Valley School of Colorado accreditations: National Association of Independent Schools, Association of Colorado Independent Schools, The Association of Boarding Schools
Source: Verified school update

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does Fountain Valley School of Colorado cost?
Fountain Valley School of Colorado's tuition is approximately $72,700 for boarding students and $39,000 for day students.
What is the acceptance rate of Fountain Valley School of Colorado?
The acceptance rate of Fountain Valley School of Colorado is 60%, which is equal to the boarding school average of 60%.
What sports does Fountain Valley School of Colorado offer?
Fountain Valley School of Colorado offers 21 interscholastic sports: Alpine Skiing, Basketball, Climbing, Cross Country, Cycling, Diving, Equestrian, Intramural Sports Only, Lacrosse, Mountain Biking, Mountaineering, Orienteering, Riding, Rock Climbing, Ski Jumping, Snowboarding, Soccer, Swimming, Swimming and Diving, Tennis and Volleyball.
Does Fountain Valley School of Colorado offer a summer program?
Yes, Fountain Valley School of Colorado offers a summer program. Visit their summer school page for more information.
When is the application deadline for Fountain Valley School of Colorado?
The application deadline for Fountain Valley School of Colorado is Dec. 15 / Feb. 1 / rolling (applications are due on Dec. 15 / Feb. 1 but additional applications are reviewed year-round as space permits ).

Alumni Reviews Review School


Class of 2023
Fountain Valley is not a competitive environment, but has the potential to raise champions. From the school, I know incredibly successful people that have been amicably exposed to an international array of people and places. . .

Class of 2020
Babson College
For me, FVS was a one-of-a-kind experience. In my search for boarding schools, FVS stood out for two reasons. First, the school combines an Eastern education—liberal arts & sciences—with an adventurous and outdoorsy environment typically. . .

Class of 2015
University of Colorado at Boulder
There is a required trip the week before spring break where you can go to the Bahamas to learn about marine life, go to China, France, New Orleans, and many other places. The majority of. . .
Show more reviews (2 reviews)
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Quick Stats (2024)

  • Grades: (Boarding) 9-12
  • Enrollment: 240 students
  • Yearly Tuition (Boarding Students): $72,700
  • Yearly Tuition (Day Students): $39,000
  • Acceptance rate: 60%
  • Average class size: 12 students
  • Application Deadline: Dec. 15 / Feb. 1 / rolling
  • Source: Verified school update

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