Region Overview: Bay Area, North Coast, Central Coast
Charter Schools in the Bay Area, North Coast, Central Coast California leads the way nationwide in the number of charter public schools and the students they serve. In 2016-17 school year, 11 new charter schools opened in this region.
The Bay Area, North, and Central Coast region includes: Alameda, Contra Costa, Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Marin, Mendocino, Monterey, San Benito, San Francisco, San Luis Obispo, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma, and Trinity counties. The charter public schools here serve over 103,000 students across 286 schools and provide a diverse array of instructional opportunities from project-based learning to blended learning to Waldorf-inspired programs.
Bay Area, North Coast and Central Coast Snapshot
Encompassing 18 counties across northwestern California, the region includes San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland, along with smaller urban and rural areas. After Greater Los Angeles, the combined statistical region is the second-largest in California; the fifth-largest in the United States; and the 43rd-largest urban area in the world. Santa Clara, Alameda, and San Francisco counties, the three largest counties in the region, had the fastest rate of population growth between 2010 and 2014, with over one third of the region's population increase occurring in the cities of San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland. In addition, the larger counties with urban job centers have significantly higher shares of foreign born residents than the smaller and more suburban counties. (source: ABAG, Association of Bay Area Governments)
The diversity of the region is mirrored by the charter school movement itself. Schools of all sizes range from independent single-sites to larger networks. The spectrum of options available provide families with a broad range of quality choices: from college preparatory curricula to programs emphasizing math, STEM, science, or the performing arts.
In San Francisco, Life Learning Academy on Treasure Island offers a second-chance to adjudicated-youth in order to help them gain a high school diploma as well as hands-on work experience that prepares them to pursue sustainable careers. Sonoma County charter schools are quickly growing, with the opening of 12 new charters in 2013. And their scale is matched by strong student performance, with charters outperforming their traditional school counterparts overall and among all subgroups.
In the Central Coast region, Big Sur Charter School is a non-classroom based school offering students and families personalized learning plans with a focus on local arts and nature education. The school actively engages parent volunteers in three locations: Big Sur, Monterey and San Luis Obispo.
For more information about any of these counties, contact Hilary Harmssen, Managing Regional Director, San Francisco Bay Area.
Learn More About
Growth and Performance
- Overview: Oakland Charter Public Schools
- Fact Sheet: Oakland Charter Schools and College-Readiness
- Overview: San Jose Charter Public Schools
- Overview: West Contra Costa Charter Public Schools
- Alameda County Office of Education
- Alameda Unified School District
- Berkeley Unified School District
- Contra Costa County Office of Education
- Del Norte County Office of Education
- Fremont Unified School District
- Hayward Unified School District
- Humboldt County Office of Education
- Jefferson Elementary School District
- Jefferson Union High School District
- Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District
- Monterey County Office of Education
- Monterey Peninsula Unified School District
- Mt. Diablo Unified School District
- Napa Valley Unified School District
- Oakland Unified School District
- Pajaro Valley Unified School District
- Ravenswood School District)
- Redwood City Elementary School District
- San Carlos Elementary School District
- San Francisco Unified School District
- San Lorenzo Unified School District
- San Mateo Union High School District
- Santa Cruz County Office of Education
- Santa Rosa City Schools
- Sequoia Union High School District
- Sonoma Valley Unified School District
- Ukiah Unified School District
- Vacaville Unified School District
- Vallejo City Unified School District
- West Contra Costa Unified School District
Start a Charter in Coastal Central and Northern California
As CCSA's designated School Development and Support representatives for the area, Judy Wilson and Helen Wang understand the unique charter school landscape you face and can support you with the necessary skills and resources to start a high-quality charter school. Learn more.
CCSA Families educates, empowers and mobilizes parents to hold our elected leaders accountable for ensuring every child has access to a high-quality public education. We advocate for quality public school choices, fair treatment and equal resources for charter public schools, and the advancement and growth of successful charter schools. Contact CCSA Familiesfor more information.
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From Our Blog
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January 16, 2018
Learn about AB 168, the purpose of the law, and how it applies to charter schools.