If you are raising children in Southern California, or plan to at some point in the future, it’s important to know where the best schools are in this region. Based on data compiled by
Niche.com, we have put together a list of cities that have some of the best school districts in Southern California based on such factors including test scores, academic strength, diversity, parent/student experience, educational outcomes, health and safety, student culture, and extracurricular activities. If you want to reference the original article and learn more about the ranking methodology used by Niche, you can check out more information here. Here are some of the cities that made the list for having the best schools.
10. Manhattan Beach Unified School District
There are 8 schools in the Manhattan Beach Unified School District serving close to 7,000 students. The entire district has received a high score on the API (Academic Performance Index) making it one of the top performing districts in all of California.
9. Beverly Hills Unified School District
Serving the city of Beverly Hills, this district has close to 5,000 students in attendance across 6 schools in the district. A+ ratings in academics, teachers and educational outcomes make this district stand out with its top schools. However, it has received lower marks in sports/fitness and culture/diversity.
8. Los Alamitos Unified School District
This school district based in Los Alamitos includes 10 schools with approximately 10,000 students in Seal Beach, Rossmoor, Los Alamitos, and parts of Cypress. A+ ratings in multiple areas including teachers, academics, sports/ fitness, educational outcomes and administrative policies put this district on the top schools list.
7. San Dieguito Union High School District
This school district based in Encinitas has approximately 12,500 students attending the 10 schools in the district. The district includes the cities of Encinitas, Solana Beach, Del Mar and surrounding areas. With A+ ratings for teachers, academics, educational outcomes and administrative policies, this district ranks high on the top schools list.
6. Redondo Beach Unified School District
There are 13 schools in the Redondo Beach Unified School District with approximately 9,000 students attending these schools. With A+ ratings across most all measured categories, this school district consistently receives recognition for being a top performing district.
6. Poway Unified School District
This school district in San Diego county serves approximately 35,500 students across 38 schools in the Poway Unified School District. With A+ ratings for teachers, academics, educational outcomes, administration and policies, it's no wonder the schools in this district are consistently rated as the top schools in San Diego County.
4. Irvine Unified School District
This school district in Orange County includes 36 schools in the city of Irvine with approximately 30,000 students in attendance. The schools in Irvine consistently receive recognition as having some of the best schools in SoCal. This district has received the California Distinguished Schools label 48 times since 1986.
3. Arcadia Unified School District
There are 11 schools in the Arcadia Unified School District with approximately 9,700 students in attendance. This district ranks highly in academic excellence with an overall A+ rating. However, it receives lower marks in student/parent surveys in regard to extracurriculars and sports/fitness.
2. Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District
There are 19 schools in the Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District with approximately 11,700 students attending these schools. With an A+ rating for teachers, academics, and educational outcomes, this district ranks high on the top schools list.
1. San Marino Unified School District
There are four schools in the San Marino Unified School District with approximately 3,100 students attending these schools. Based on API scores, this is the top performing school district in Los Angeles.
Any surprises by the school districts that made the list? It’s no wonder that most of the cities that received some of the highest ratings for schools are also some of the most affluent areas in Southern California.