Learning & Activities


The 10 Top-Rated Schools in San Jose Today

The 10 Top-Rated Schools in San Jose Today

Just shy of the bustling Monterey and San Francisco cities, San Jose is among the best places to live in the bay area. It’s the third largest city in the state and an urban Silicon Valley hub known for its mild, sunny weather, creative community, and huge significance in the country’s agricultural sector.

San Jose’s bustling downtown district incorporates the new with the old, where historic thoroughfares bring about modern cultural outlets. The region is also home to cultural places of interest, like the art museums and the state-of-the-art SAP Center. But besides the rich cultural heritage, the region is also home to numerous top-ranking institutions. 

While a “good” school is mostly preference-based, the city offers vast choices to suit your child’s needs, talent, and capabilities.

This detailed review takes you through the best schools in San Jose based on performance in state-mandated exams, online reviews, and GreatSchools.Org test scores.

Best Elementary Schools

Williams Elementary School

1150 Rajkovich Way, San Jose, California 95120

Williams Elementary ranks high among the best elementary schools in San Jose today. The facility is reputable for providing a safe, clean, and highly engaging learning environment. In addition, it offers a research-based instructional practice that supports individual students' learning and success and maintains active partnerships with parents.

The international learning community caters to 630 students with unique learning styles, cultures, dreams, and experiences. This population comprises 51% males and 49% females from kindergarten to the fifth grade. The school also boasts a 74% minority student enrolment, and 4% of the populace is meant for economically disadvantaged learners.

Williams Elementary has 24 teachers working full-time, translating to a teacher-student ratio of 1:26. This is much lower than the Unified School District average. But judging from the facility’s current rankings, the school doesn’t find this low ratio a hurdle.     

The institution ranks top among the elementary schools in San Jose Unified School District. It also ranks #31 among its 5,534 peers in the state, with an equally impressive Reading and Math performance.

At Williams, 92% of learners passed the proficient level for Reading, while 88% achieved the same for Math. In addition, the school ranks #13 and #56 for Reading and Math Proficiency and boasts a 9/10 summary rating on GreatSchools.Org. 

Los Alamitos Elementary School

6130 Silberman Avenue, San Jose, California 95120

Los Alamitos Elementary school has an unmatched reputation for academic excellence. The facility emphasizes positive behavior and encourages students to adopt the “Lion’s P.R.ID.E.” This entails the following personal mantras: Problem-solving, Respect for everyone, I decide responsibly, Do your best, and Everyone is caring.

The reputable elementary school serves K-5 to a student population of 653. Both genders share spoils in this populace, making up 50% each. Furthermore, the school designates 9% of enrolment opportunities for students facing financial difficulties. Learners from minority communities form 59%.

Los Alamitos’ staff team comprises 26 full-time tutors trained and seasoned in whole child development. The school’s teacher-student ratio is 1:25, which is relatively worse than the district’s average comparison. But the dedicated and highly skilled team maintains an unwavering commitment to delivering a challenging program and helping students reach their full potential.

Consequently, the facility continues to perform beyond expectations in state-mandated tests, and students adequately prepare for high school. Boasting an 8/10 GreatSchools.Org summary rating, Los Alamitos is the third-best elementary school in the district and ranks #471 in the state.

Its Reading and Math Proficiency Ranks are #242 and #328, respectively. These results were possible because 82% of learners scored above the Math proficiency level, and 82% passed in Reading Proficiency. 

Cute children with soccer ball at sports court on sunny day. Summer camp
Playtime! Enjoying the sun and the fresh air, these students are having a blast in the playground

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Graystone Elementary School

6982 Shearwater Dr., San Jose, California 95120

Graystone Elementary commits to delivering a comprehensive and high-quality academic experience for your young student. The public school ensures maximum involvement of all stakeholders in one goal: to provide learners with a nurturing, positive environment.

There are 523 learners at Graystone Elementary from kindergarten to the fifth grade. This population is male-dominated, with boys forming 53% and girls comprising 47%. The facility’s minority population makes up 70%, and 7% of learners face financial limitations.

Moreover, 21 board-certified and seasoned tutors take care of the student population. This equals a tutor-student ratio of 1:25, one of the worst in the district. But despite the straining ratio, teachers still harness their skills and maximize the available opportunities to ensure students perform impressively in state-mandated exams and high school preparation.

Graystone Elementary boasts a GreatSchools.Org summary rating of 8/10. It’s also the second-best elementary school in the Unified School District and ranks #38 in the state. The school also performed well in Reading and Math Proficiency, ranking #38 and #47, respectively. In addition, 89% of learners excelled in Math Proficiency, while 90% passed the Reading Proficiency pass mark. 

Booksin Elementary School

1590 Dry Creek Rd., San Jose, California 95125

The high-performing Booksin Elementary is another perfect choice for parents in San Jose. The school commits to continuous improvement, student excellence, and community involvement. Learners here undergo an inclusive curriculum enriched by the Library Media Center, arts program, tech labs, and the Bulldog Backyard.

Booksin hosts 769 learners between kindergarten and fifth grade. This population is predominantly male, as the boys form 51% while the girls are 49%. In addition, the faculty designates 8% enrolment opportunities to students from financially deprived households, and its current minority enrolment is 47%.

At Booksin, 31 full-time tutors handle the student population, equal to a teacher-student ratio of 1:25. While the ratio is worse than the district or state average, this doesn’t mean the school is understaffed. The dedicated teachers still deliver a rigorous, balanced standards-based curriculum necessary for academic success.

Booksin boasts a 7/10 GreatSchools.Org summary rating. It’s the fourth-best elementary school in the district and ranks #769 among the state’s elementary schools based on its performance in state-mandated exams.

The facility also ranks #352 and #660 in Reading and Math Proficiency. About 80% of learners passed in Reading Proficiency, while 71% passed the Math Proficiency pass mark. 

Best Middle Schools

River Glen School

1088 Brd. Way, San Jose, California 95125

River Glen Middle School considers itself an innovative partnership between the personnel, families, and the community aimed at nurturing valuable global leaders and citizens. The school caters to 473 students between kindergarten and eighth grades.

The percentage of male students is 49%, while the females form 51%. Learners from minority communities are the majority, comprising 51%. Moreover, the school has a minority student enrollment of 92%.

River Glen has a strong team of 21 full-time tutors, translating to a teacher-student ratio of 1:23. The instructors implement the school’s unique 2-Way Bilingual Immersion model prioritizing academic excellence, bi-literacy, and bilingualism. They also develop a positive multicultural understanding centering on inclusion, respect, accepting responsibility, and service to others.

This approach has earned the facility a great reputation, and students perform exceptionally in statewide examinations and graduation. Learners also exhibit sufficient high school preparation.

Boasting an impressive GreatSchools.Org summary rating of 6/10, River Glen ranks #3 in the district, #86 among the state’s magnet middle schools and #943 in California. Moreover, the latest rankings place the institution at 794 and 711 for Math and Reading Proficiency. The percentage of students who passed the respective proficiency levels was 32% and 52%.

Castillero Middle School

6384 Leyland Park Dr., San Jose, California 95120

Castillero Middle School was established in July 1980 and is within the Almaden Valley foothills. The public school is reputable for its amazing educational opportunities emphasizing the visual and performing arts. It’s also among the top-ranked middle schools in the district.

Students from around the community flock to Castillero to experience the school’s arts and academic excellence, rich culture, and diversity. The institution serves 1,049 students between grades six to eight. The male and female populations are almost on par, with girls forming 51% while boys comprise 49%. This population also comprises learners from financially unstable backgrounds, and the school has 66% minority student enrolment.

Castillero Middle School has a talented and dedicated staff team comprising 47 board-certified tutors working full-time. Simplified, this number translates to a tutor-student ratio of 1:22, which is on par with the Unified School District metrics.

The facility triumphs against most of its peers regarding state examination performance and student preparation for high school, boasting a GreatSchools.Org summary rating of 7/10. In addition, it’s currently the second-best middle school in the Unified School District and ranks #803 statewide.

Students also excelled in Math and Reading Proficiency. 61% of them passed in Reading Proficiency, and half reached or exceeded the Math proficiency level.

Exploring new possibilities in the science lab. Ready to take on any challenge that comes her way.

©iStock.com/Inside Creative House

Bret Harte Middle School

7050 Bret Harte Dr., San Jose, California 95120

Bret Harte Middle School is a great public school occupying a 26-acre space in southern San Jose. It’s located near Almaden Valley’s historic quicksilver mining area and boasts being one of the region’s top-ranking facilities. 

Bret Harte Middle has an ideal environment for optimal academic and co-curriculum achievement.

The school serves 1,056 students between the sixth and eighth grades. The boys lead in population, forming 54%, while the girls form 46%. Enrolment for learners from economically disadvantaged families is at 11%, and the school boasts a 74% minority student enrolment. All learners in this diverse population adhere to the school’s mantra that values honesty, responsibility, and respect.

There are 51 board-certified and experienced teachers in the school. So the tutor-student ratio is 1:21, lower than the district’s value. Regardless, the committed team guides learners to their full potential against all odds.

Bret Harte Middle boasts a GreatSchools.Org summary rating of 9/10. It’s the topmost-ranking school in the Unified School District, taking up position 141 out of the 2,319 schools featured in state rankings. The school also excels in Math and Reading Proficiency, ranking #90 and #159, respectively. About 75% of learners passed in Math Proficiency, while 78% excelled in Reading.

Best High Schools

Monta Vista High School 

21840 Mcclellan Road, Cupertino, California

Monta Vista High School is at the center of Silicon Valley. The school first opened its doors in 1969 and has grown to be one of the most populous top-ranking college prep programs in Santa Clara county, California, and nationwide. Monta Vista has twice earned the National Blue Ribbon School and California Distinguished School titles. 

The school boasts a student population of 2,032 with a nearly 100% graduation rate. This population comprises 90% minority enrolment, and 4% of learners are economically disadvantaged. The learners undergo a rigorous, dynamic, and extensive program to create active, ethical, and informed global citizens.

Monta Vista’s curriculum follows the state standards and the institution’s “Learning Goals.” In addition, the dedicated staff team augments 27 Advanced Placement (AP) programs, EL and sheltered classes, special day sessions, and numerous elective choices. Notably, Monta Vista’s AP participation rate is 85%.

According to the latest rankings focusing on students’ performance in state examinations and graduation, the all-inclusive program has been quite effective. Monta Vista is the second-best high school in the district and the third-best in the San Jose Metro Area.

The high school ranks #17 in the STEM category, #14 in state rankings, and #129 nationally. GreatSchools.Org rates it at 10/10.    

Lynbrook High School 

1280 Johnson Avenue, San Jose, California

Lynbrook High School is a comprehensive public institution within the Fremont Union High Schools District. Established in 1965, it’s the fifth learning facility to open in the district and is among the three institutions in the area that can trace their origins to the 1960s.

In the early 1970s, some graduates from the school were part of the brains behind the revolutionary computer technologies that transformed the area into its current Silicon Valley status. In fact, some of the most profound tech and social developments share a close connection with the history of the West San Jose facility.

Currently, Lynbrook High School serves a diverse population of 1,942 students. Of these, 5% are in the Free Lunch Program. Learners here depend on 82 teachers, translating to a tutor-student ratio of 1:24.

The Lynbrook community emphasizes involvement in the school and commitment to family. These values contribute to the reputable high school’s admirable standing. The school also boasts collaborative teams, a sophisticated approach to tech, and extensive extracurricular and co-curricular programs.  

Lynbrook High School has an impressive 10/10 GreatSchools.Org rating. It also ranks #2 among its peers in the San Jose Metro Area, #1 in the district, and #13 in the STEM category. Statewide, the facility takes up position 11.  

Dr. T.J. Owens Gilroy Early College Academy 

5055 Santa Teresa Blvd. Pb17, Gilroy, California

Popular as GECA, Dr. T.J. Owens Gilroy Early College Academy is among the cutting-edge high schools under the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The facility offers a highly supportive, innovative, and academically challenging program to 298 students from diverse cultures and backgrounds.

The school’s Free Lunch program caters to 31% of the student population, while 12% of learners leverage the Reduced-Price Lunch program. Moreover, the school has ten full-time teachers, translating to a 1:29 teacher-student ratio.

After applying and qualifying for the program, students spend their four-year high school period on the Gavilan College campus. Here, they complete a rigorous college preparatory program and take classes offering both high school and college credit. Learners can also register for Advanced Placement under the school’s 100% participation rate.

After four years, they can graduate from the institution with a high school degree alongside an associate of science or arts degree. Successful students can also get 60 Gavilan College transferable college units. Thus, they qualify for the California State University and the University of California systems or their preferred private four-year university program.

Performance-wise, GECA ranks top in the San Jose Metro Area and the Gilroy Unified School District. It’s also the 9th best in the state and takes up position 95 in nationwide rankings. Finally, GreatSchools.Org rates the facility at 6/10.

Graduation Caps Thrown in the Air
Today marks the end of one journey and the start of a new chapter. Congratulations to all the graduates on this momentous occasion!

©Anel Alijagic/Shutterstock.com

It’s Time to Boost Your Child’s Academic Experience

The above schools stand out among the best in San Jose. By registering your young student to any of the institutions, you’re assured they’ll gain valuable experience and skills to be stand-out global leaders. But how do you get the right pick from the above options?

Well, this is a deeply personal decision for the learner and the entire family. Thus you must consider multiple factors, including the commute distance between the school and home, your budget, the school’s facilities and coursework, and your child’s capabilities and talent. You should also pay attention to their culture and supplementary services. This way, you can make a suitable pick that’ll suit your young learner’s needs.  

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