Gary Bloom

On behalf of the governing board and staff of Santa Cruz City Schools I would like to welcome you to the 2013-14 school year. We are proud of our work in SCCS, and are pleased to be able to serve our students and their families.  Our work in the school community is governed by our District Vision, Core Values and Strategic Goals.

This should be an outstanding school year in SCCS. Thanks to voters who approved our recent parcel tax measures, we will maintain outstanding programs, including fully staffed libraries, reduced class sizes, and visual and performing arts programs. Our K-3 class sizes average about 22 students, and our 4-5 class sizes around 27 students. We offer a full range of outstanding classes at our middle and high schools.

We are working hard to increase the number of our students who choose to attend college and to insure that they are better prepared to do so. We are seeing significant improvement in the number of students meeting rigorous college entrance requirements and taking Advanced Placement and Honors Courses.  As you will see below, our graduates are being accepted at some of the best colleges, universities and vocational programs in the world.

We continue to focus upon customer service, working on doing a better job of responding to your needs. We maintain a constant focus upon teacher quality, with the knowledge that nothing is more important than the teachers who work with your children every day.

Finally, please be assured that as students in Santa Cruz City Schools your children will be known, safe, challenged and supported. Also, please remember that we are here to serve you as your partners in educating your child and welcome your ideas, concerns and requests.


Gary Bloom
Superintendent, Santa Cruz City Schools


COMMUNITY BULLETIN from Superintendent Gary Bloom
November 1, 2013

I am pleased to announce a tentative agreement has been reached with the Greater Santa Cruz Federation of Teachers (GSCFT) for the 2012-13 school year.  Under this agreement, certificated employees shall receive a 2% salary increase on the salary schedule, retroactive to July of 2012.  Prior to implementation, the agreement must be ratified by members of the GSCFT bargaining unit and the Santa Cruz City Schools Board of Trustees, and approved by the County Office of Education.

The Board of Trustees approved this increase in the face of very difficult ongoing budget conditions.  Funding for California schools remains relatively flat this school year, causing the district to be unable to make significant new investments or restoration of cuts that have been made over the past five years.

However, the salary increase is made possible through the State Legislature's redirection of so-called "redevelopment" dollars to the district.  Most of these funds are now committed to salaries.  Negotiations for the 2013-14 school year are likely to commence in the spring of 2014, by which time it is hoped that the state will have clarified budget allocations for the current school year - a vitally important move in order to help negotiators understand how much money is actually available.

Our hardworking teachers are the heart and soul of what we do in Santa Cruz City Schools.  We are pleased to be able to offer this modest increase in compensation.  In negotiations, the District sought to balance the twin priorities of fair compensation for teachers and sound fiscal management that prevents harmful cuts in programs, increases in class sizes and teacher and classified staff layoffs.  We believe that the new tentative agreement responsibly strikes that balance.  We look forward to continued collaboration with our teachers as we work together to serve our students and community.

We also continue to be grateful to our community, which has provided ongoing support for reduced class sizes, exceptional teaching, counseling services, first class libraries and programs in arts and sciences, and a wide spectrum of other outstanding resources for our students.


Gary Bloom

District Employment At-A-Glance:

  • Certificated (teachers): 434
  • All Employee: 753
  • Curernt Contract with the Greater Santa Cruz Federation of Teachers: 7/1/11 - 6/30/14
  • Current Contract with the Santa Cruz Council of Classified Employees: 7/1/13 - 6/30/14


 Welcome to the online home of Santa Cruz City Schools. Our website is designed to be accessible and informative, reflecting the vibrancy and excellence of our schools. We invite you to explore and welcome your This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Santa Cruz City Schools serves students residing in the city of Santa Cruz and neighborhoods from Davenport to Soquel.

The district is comprised of elementary and high school districts governed by a common Board of Education and a general administrative staff. There are five schools in the Elementary District; the Secondary district includes two middle schools and three comprehensive high schools. Serving the diverse needs of our community, the district also offers a continuation school, an opportunity school, an independent studies program and a home school program.

Our students receive a rich and deep education. From strong academics to music and art , our schools offer programs and services that meet the needs of all students, guiding them to reach their full capabilities. A supportive and involved community helps us to maintain excellence.



Santa Cruz County College Commitment Summit

UCSC Hosts 350 Local 7th GradeStudents

UCSC piloted the first Middle School Summit on May 21, 2013 to 7th grade students from throughout Santa Cruz County as part of the Santa Cruz County College Commitment program.  The purpose of the summit was to provide career and college-going curriculum for 7th-grade students in Santa Cruz, and have students conduct research on solving challenges in the community and the broader world.  Each student participated in one of 10 workshops on such topics as homelessness, hunger, environmental sustainability, astronomy, social justice and immigration, cancer, game design, engineering solutions, healing through the arts, and crime prevention.  For information directly from students, please view this video:


   College Tracker

College Admissions 2013

Graduating seniors from Harbor, Santa Cruz and Soquel High Schools, Delta, Costanoa, Alternative Family Education and the Ark are about to accept their diplomas and embark on their journeys to college. We are proud of the hard work and accomplishments of the Class of 2013.  Here are just some of the colleges and universities accepting our outstanding graduates:

Academy of Art, Arizona State, Art Institute of Chicago, Bates College, Berklee College of Music, Boston University, Brandeis College, Brown University, Bryn Mawr College, Cabrillo College, Cal Art5s/Institute of the Arts, Cal Poly Pomona, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Cal State Chico, Cal State East Bay, Cal State Fresno, Cal State Fullerton, Cal State Humboldt, Cal State Long Beach, Cal State Northridge, Cal State Pomona, Cal State Sacramento, Cal State San Bernadino, Cal State San Diego, Cal State San Marcos, Cal State Stanislaus, California Lutheran University, Carroll College, Chapman University, Claremont-McKenna, Clark University, Colby College, College of Wooster, Colorado College, Colorado School of Mines, Colorado State University, Corban University, CSUMB, Dartmouth College, Dominican University, Drexel University, Earlham College, Eastern Michigan University, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Evergreen College, Fashion Institute of Design & Merchanizing, Fresno Pacific University, Georgetown University, Gonzaga University, Guildord College, Harvard, Harvey Mudd, Hawaii Pacific University, Hofstra University, Hope College, Kendall College, Lewis & Clark, Loyola Marymount, Mary Baldwin College, Michigan State University, Montona State University, Monterey Peninsula College, Mt. Holyoke, Northeastern University, Northern Arizona University, NYU, Occidental College, Ohio University, Oregon Institute of Technology, Oregon State University, Pmona College, Principia, Purude University, Reed College, Rennsselear Polytechnial Institute, Rochester Insititute of Technology, Rogue Community, Sacramento Stete University, San Diego State University, San Francisco State, San Jose State University, Santa Barbara City College, Santa Clara University, Sarah Lawrence, Scripps College, Seattle University, Somona State University, Southern Oregon University, St. Andrews (Scotland), Stanford, Stetson University, SUNY Brockport, SUNY Buffalo, Syracuse University, Tennessee State University, Tufts University, Tulane University, U Penn, UC Berkeley, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Merced, UC Riverside, UC San Diego, UC Santa Barbara, UCLA, UCSC, University of British Columbia, University of Colorado - Boulder, University of Denver, University of Hawaii, University of Hawaii/Manoa, University of Kent/Southampton, University of Nebraska/Omaha, University of Nevada/Reno, University of New Hampshire, University of North Texas, University of Oregon, University of Portland, University of Puget Sound, University of Redlands, University of San Diego, University of San Francisco, University of Seattle, University of the Pacific, University of Washington, University of Wisconsin/Madison, US Military - Army/Navy, USC, Utah State University, Vassar, Washington State University, Washington University, Wellesley, Westminster College, Whitman College, Willamette University, William Jessup University, Yale 

Congratulations to the Class of 2013 - we are proud of you!






Santa Cruz HS & Harbor HS receive the California Distinguished School Award!

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today announced 97 exemplary California public middle and high schools were selected as 2011 California Distinguished Schools as the state’s prestigious awards program celebrates its silver anniversary.

 Santa Cruz City Schools is pleased to announce that Harbor High School and Santa Cruz High School were recognized as exemplary and inspiring public schools that have earned this highly sought after award.  The Distinguished School award is a direct reflection of the dedication, hard work, and vision of each school’s education community. 

 Schools were identified for eligibility on the basis of their Academic Performance Index ( and Adequate Yearly Progress ( results, which are the state and federal accountability models, respectively.

 The applicants were also identified by their success in narrowing the achievement gap that exists between higher-performing and lower-performing students. All applicants underwent a stringent selection process conducted by the California Department of Education with the help of many educators from across the state. Each applicant was required to describe two Signature Practices that have led to an increase in student achievement and a narrowing of the achievement gap. Applicants were then selected to receive a thorough site visit to validate the Signature Practices.

 Santa Cruz High School has been recognized for its Signature Practices in improving literacy and numeracy for underperforming students, and for its four-year personal planning workshops.  Harbor High School’s Signature Practices are its work to develop community ties to enhance college readiness and student achievement, and its work embracing and challenging its significant subgroups to close the achievement gap.

 Superintendent Gary Bloom commented as follows:  “The recognition Santa Cruz and Harbor High Schools as California Distinguished Schools, both in the same year, is an unprecedented honor for our school district.  These awards validate the hard work and commitment of our teachers, classified staff, leadership team, governing board and community.  This is further inspiration for all of us in Santa Cruz City Schools as we strive to insure the success of each and every one of our students.”

The 2011 California Distinguished Schools will be honored during an awards ceremony and dinner at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim on May 20, 2011. The event and awards are funded by donations from many of California’s most prominent corporations and statewide educational organizations.



Santa Cruz City School District Named to AP Achievement List by the College Board for Significant Gains in Advanced Placement Access and Student Performance  
388 US Public School Districts across the Nation Are Honored

Santa Cruz City School District is one of fewer than 400 school districts in the nation being honored by the College Board with a place on its AP Achievement List for opening AP classroom doors to a significantly broader pool of students, while maintaining or improving the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher. From 2008 to 2010, Santa Cruz City School District has increased the number of students participating in AP exams from 263 to 337, while maintaining the percentage of students earning AP Exam scores of 3 or higher, the score typically needed to earn college credit, at 77%.


Santa Cruz City Schools Superintendent Gary Bloom stated the following: “Santa Cruz City Schools is making a concerted effort to insure that all of our graduates are able to access college and other post-secondary educational and career opportunities.  We are committed to increasing the numbers of students from non-college educated families who aspire to graduate from four year colleges and universities.  Thanks to the efforts of our students, families, teachers and counselors, we increased the number of students taking AP classes by 12% in just this past year.”


"I am constantly impressed with the excellence of Santa Cruz City Schools.  Our teachers and students are as talented as any in the country and they should be proud of this recognition," noted Santa Cruz Mayor Ryan Coonerty, an alum of Santa Cruz's public schools.


Helping more students learn at a higher level and earn higher AP scores is an objective of all members of the AP community, from AP teachers to district and school administrators to college professors. Many are experimenting with a variety of initiatives and strategies to determine how to expand access and improve student performance simultaneously.


The complete AP Achievement List can be found at