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Top Rated Schools in Sonoma County

Sharon Monticello

Sharon Monticello is native to one of California's most picturesque areas— Petaluma, nestled in the heart of wine country, has been home to Sharon's...

Sharon Monticello is native to one of California's most picturesque areas— Petaluma, nestled in the heart of wine country, has been home to Sharon's...

Feb 5 9 minutes read

Another school year is about to start, and if you have recently moved to Sonoma County or looking to move soon, then finding the perfect school is probably on the top of your mind. After all, it is important that you find a school that would nurture your child's emotional, physical, and intellectual development. 

No need to worry though. Sonoma County has numerous public and private schools that can choose from to make sure you find the best fit for you and your child.

Petaluma Accelerated Charter School 

  • 110 Ellis Street, Petaluma, CA 94952

When searching for a middle school for our child, our family took a close look at every middle school option in town and in Sebastopol, from information nights, to shadow days to school tours to talking to parents. After gathering every bit of information we could, PACS rose above the rest for a variety of reasons, especially the STEAM curriculum and approach to instruction, so we took a leap of faith by enrolling our 7th grader in this new middle school. So grateful we listened to our gut. Our child is so happy. She is challenged academically, encouraged to problem solve in a group setting by collaborating with and listening to her peers and she LOVES the two lead teachers, Mr. Jackson and Mrs. Ayala, who are the heart and soul of this program. Their progressive vision of what education can and should be gives children the confidence to take risks in a safe environment and pushes them to reach their academic potential. The approach of supporting groups of kids to work together to solve problems and be able to articulate what they are doing is engaging and fun. Teachers jump in and help when kids are struggling rather than spend the entire work period lecturing. The smaller school setting allows children to develop close relationships with their teachers, which is paramount for kids at this life stage. Before applying, know that PACS is an academically accelerated program. The work and pace are challenging, so it's critical to strongly consider your child's educational needs and academic abilities. Finally, elective choices are of-the-minute relevant and encourage critical thinking. I would love to see more arts electives, including visual art, choir, etc., but they are off to a tremendous beginning and I believe they are just getting started! Bravo to principal Mr. Harris for bringing this badly-needed option to Petaluma!

Submitted by a parent · February 17, 2016

Old Adobe Elementary Charter School

  • 2856 Adobe Road, Petaluma, CA 94954

There is a warmth at Old Adobe that is unique and unlike other school campuses that I visit regularly for my job. I would not send my child anywhere else. A sweet, sweet school with fantastic people.

Submitted by a parent · May 25, 2016

Old Adobe Charter is a welcoming community. Every child, teacher, parent, and staff member feel a part of this community; every staff member knows the name of every child. Our family has two boys attending O.A. and we have been part of the community for four years. While I may not be an active PTO parent and my volunteer time is more limited than I like, I am given ample opportunity that fits into my work schedule to be a part of my kid's school experience, and I feel welcomed when I am on campus. A big focus of Old Adobe's staff is for everyone to be READING, READING, and READING some more. I have even checked out books from the school's library. My 8 year old son is very social, very into video games, and always has a book on hand for pleasure reading. Reading for enjoyment is a powerful hobby. At Old Adobe, Earth Science is a hands on experience from tending the organic garden to hosting local astronomers who bring their telescopes onto campus to share with the kids and parents (and the PTO served hot chocolate). Finally, O.A. recognizes a child's natural love of the Arts, from acting on stage to Zumba class in the cafeteria, from creative writing to painting, children are given a chance to find an art form that they feel they can express who they are. We are pleased we became a part of Old Adobe's community.

Submitted by a parent · March 11, 2016

Liberty Elementary School 

  • 170 Liberty School Road, Petaluma, CA 94952

Image source: Summit

This school is fantastic! Between great administration, wonderful staff, and involved parents, the kids get a very strong start. They are taught respect and social skills in addition to the academic standards. I have three kids, two have graduated Liberty and as another Mom said 'they can tell the Liberty kids at the Jr. High'. I am very glad I chose Liberty to provide a strong foundation for my kids to build on.

Submitted by a parent · November 03, 2009

We're new to Liberty Elemenatary and we're in Love with the school and staff. Yes, they have fabulous test scores; all 5 types of 2008 3rd grade test scores were in the top 10 of all North Bay county schools. Only 2 other schools in north bay counties finished in top 10 of all (5) 3rd grade test scores. The staff to student ratio of 46/198 is better then most private schools, our Kindergarten class size of 15 students makes us VERY happy. It's only the 3rd week of school and our teacher has already completed her student evaluations and is adjusting the cirriculum for the 5 more advanced students. The family involvement is very high. In our class there are almost too many parent volunteers for our teacher to schedule. The on-campus aftercare program and staff are fabulous, plus they allowed us to start 1 month before school started making the adjustment easy !

Submitted by a parent · September 17, 2009

Sonoma Charter School

  • 17202 Sonoma Highway, Sonoma, CA 95476

Image Source: Sonoma Charter School

My children have been attending Sonoma Charter School for 8 years. I love that it is a small school that develops each child as an individual. After attending the 8th grade graduation last year I was struck by how well the teachers know the students when they leave. Each student was honored by a teacher with encouraging words and funny anecdotes. My children are confident learners who perform well academically. They feel valued as people and have grown in confidence as citizens of society. The drama and art programs are fantastic and the school reinstated Spanish this year. I feel confident that my children will sail through high school and go on to academic universities thanks largely to their elementary education at Sonoma Charter School.

Submitted by a parent · September 03, 2013

Sonoma Charter is a vibrant environment filled with rich educational opportunities and diverse social interactions. This school truly fosters a welcoming, worldly atmosphere where each child (and parent) is valued and supported. My sons passionately loved it from Day One, therefore, so did I.

Submitted by a parent · August 30, 2013

As an interested observer, I have been impressed by Sonoma Charter School's innovative programs, supportive staff, involved parents, and community outreach. This combination produces results seen in students' achievements and successful graduates. I would not hestitate to recommend Sonoma Charter School to any family.

Submitted by a community member · August  28, 2013

Sonoma Valley High School

  • 20000 Broadway, Sonoma, CA 95476

Sonoma High is the heartbeat to much of the community here in Sonoma. To have a public high school that has continued to offer numerous electives including woodshop, metal shop, photography, culinary, engineering, and agriculture helps students create a successful career path outside of the typical core classes taught at all high schools.

Submitted by a parent · August 17, 2016

Sonoma Valley High School has been a great school for my now 16 year old. There are over 40 extra curricular activities available including sports, music, drama, forensics (speech and debate), cheerleading, dance, newspaper, etc. Like all schools, and all workplaces, there are amazing teachers and those who should probably have chosen a different career. But I maintain that the outstanding, amazing and motivating teachers are changing student lives for the better...the others, well, it's a good lesson in life to the students that not everyone in your world can be fantastic. With our superintendent, new principal, and absolutely amazing college counseling center, I give this school high marks, and am very happy that my child is able to learn and participate.

Submitted by a parent · August 27, 2013

This was my high school. It's a small school with a big heart. I learned so much while attending there

Submitted by a community member · July 01, 2010


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