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The Facts on Sonoma County Schools


The Facts on Sonoma County Schools

By Steven D. Herrington, Ph.D.

Did you know? Sonoma County Office of Education (SCOE) provides services and support to students and schools across Sonoma County. SCOE priorities are directly linked to the success of our schools and students, and we work to provide them with resources and expertise in a variety of areas that include Common Core State Standards, college and career readiness, and financial stability, to name a few. Read on for a quick snapshot of the schools and districts we serve, based on the most recent data from the 2014-15 school year.

• There are 184 public schools in 40 districts across Sonoma County.

• Enrolled in those schools are approximately 71, 096 students.

• The county’s smallest district, Kashia, comprises one school with about 16 students, while the largest district, Santa Rosa City High School, serves about 11,244 students in 15 schools.

• The two largest student demographic groups are split between 45 percent white students and 44 percent Hispanic/Latino.

• Among student subgroups, 47 percent of our county’s students are economically disadvantaged, 23 percent are English learners, and 14 percent are receiving special education services.

• Sonoma County’s graduation rate is on the rise. It increased from from 74.7 percent in 2009-10 to 82.9 percent in 2014-15. 

• Standardized test scores in Sonoma County are also seeing an upward trend. When students took California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress tests last spring, 49 percent met or exceeded levels in English, compared to 46 percent in 2015. In math, 36 percent of county students were deemed proficient, compared to 33 percent in 2015.

• Sonoma County has award-winning schools—there are 10 National Blue Ribbon Schools, 79 California Distinguished Schools, and 4 California Gold Ribbon Schools.

• Sonoma County, along with the rest of the state of California, faces a dire teacher shortage as a result of the 2008 recession. To help meet this need, SCOE created the North Coast School of Education, a program that administers state-approved credential programs that support new and aspiring teachers as they develop and grow in their teaching practice.

It is SCOE’s honor and responsibility to foster student success through service to students, schools, and the community. I hope you found these facts informative. If you’re interested in learning more, visit

Steven Herrington is Sonoma County’s superintendent of schools.