The Path to Higher Ed is a SchooLinks hosted podcast community that explores trending topics and issues in the area of college and career readiness. Our featured guests are pushing education forward by constantly learning from, innovating and applying their college and career readiness practices.

In this episode, we speak with Robert Mendoza, Headmaster of Fairmont Preparatory Academy in California. With a school population that contains 67% international students, Fairmont is working to prepare its unique student body to handle the rigors of college. Recognizing that student needs vary, Fairmont strategically places different cohorts of students within learning programs that are tailored to their different learning needs. The process is working as 92% of the school’s students are getting into top 100 colleges.

Episode Link

About Robert Mendoza

Robert Mendoza is senior vice president of Fairmont Private Schools where he oversees operations at three P-8 campuses and serves as headmaster for Fairmont Preparatory Academy.

In his leadership role, Mr. Mendoza develops and executes strategic plans to maintain the highest standards in academic delivery systems and service to families. He ensures programs related to marketing, admissions, education, and campus infrastructure operate within Fairmont’s culture and mission.

Mr. Mendoza collaborates in initiatives to advance Fairmont’s international education partnerships, programs, and services (Fairmont International School). He also serves as chair of the Academic Advisory Council, the decision-making body in all areas of Fairmont’s educational process. He serves as State Chair of AdvancEd, a non-profit, non-partisan organization that conducts rigorous, on-site external reviews of Pre-K-12 schools and school systems to ensure that all learners realize their full potential.

Mr. Mendoza joined Fairmont in 2006 when he began his tenure as headmaster of Fairmont Preparatory Academy. His responsibilities include supervision of all academic programs, administration, and admissions for this close-knit learning community that prepares high school students for success in America’s top colleges and universities.

Before joining Fairmont, Mr. Mendoza served as dean of students at St. John Bosco High School where he was responsible for campus life, enforcement of school policy, and campus safety. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Western Michigan University in sociology and a master’s degree in secondary education from the University of Phoenix.

About Fairmont Preparatory Academy

Students attending Fairmont Preparatory Academy appreciate how intellectual, social, and emotional development comes naturally. The close-knit learning community inspires the courage to make a difference in the world and fosters a passion for learning. The fact that 92% of graduates received acceptance to America’s top 100 colleges and universities last year speaks for itself.

The school offers 25 AP courses, an IB Diploma Program, an Advanced Math Program, as well as an Advanced Science and Engineering Program, and International Business Program. School pride stems from a rich integration of rigorous academics, exciting multicultural enrichment, rewarding extracurricular activities, and a varsity sports program that is no stranger to CIF success.

Fairmont’s low student-to-faculty ratios mean that each student receives the attention, knowledge, and care he or she needs to flourish. The school values the importance of individualized academic guidance — the student: college counselor ratio is 43:1 while the national average is 477:1 and the state average is 945:1. With this high level of support, students excel in academics, play multiple varsity sports, and participate in clubs and ASB. They even have opportunities to engage in robotics, science, and debate competitions along with performing arts and visual arts productions.

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