Award Year: 2020

Horseshoe Trails Elementary School

3210 W Sentinel Rock Road
Cave Creek, AZ, 85327-0426

(480) 272-8500

Mr. Aaron Pettinato Mr., Principal at time of Nomination

Cave Creek Unified District

School Website


It is the mission of Horseshoe Trails Elementary School to create a thinking and learning community in which individuals think, work and expect the best from themselves and others as global citizens.

Student Demographics
  • White: 80%
  • Hispanic: 9%
  • Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 1%
  • Asian: 3%
  • Native American: 1%
  • Two or more races: 6%
HTES Student Council members showing school spirit at Homecoming Parade.

HTES Student Council members showing school spirit at Homecoming Parade.

Horseshoe Trails Elementary School resides in the Cave Creek Unified School District, just a few miles north of Phoenix, Arizona. We are a Mandarin Chinese World Language School with all students on campus learning Chinese from kindergarten to sixth grade. We believe that learning another language and culture is a beneficial opportunity that all children moving into a global society should possess. Our instructional focus is multifaceted but our primary aim is to increase student engagement through cooperative learning and personalized instruction. We believe that every student is unique and deserves the power to shape a personal path towards success.

Additionally, Horseshoe Trails values the needs of the whole child and seeks ways to strengthen our social and emotional curriculum through innovative means such as our homegrown horsemanship program. Stallion Strides is an equine-based character building program that you will not find in any other public school in the country. Working with horses in our arena on campus, students are able to develop a healthy respect for these amazing animals and each other. The goal of Stallion Strides is to provide students the opportunity to strengthen character through a hands-on equine experience by creating a positive and safe environment while promoting empathy, confidence, and autonomy.

Although our school boasts many progressive programs, it's our people that truly set us apart. Our teachers are talented, passionate, committed, and cohesive. As a staff, we commit ourselves to modeling our school wide expectation of having Strong Character, Strong Work Ethic, and Strong Relationships.