The San Mateo County Office of Education provides the Community Schools Program, which is an open-entry/open-exit program for students who can benefit from an alternative school setting. Students are placed in aCommunity School when referred by Juvenile Probation, or by a local school district for expulsion or as a result of a School Attendance Review Board (SARB) hearing.  Community Schools may also serve homeless students and students referred by their local school district with parent consent. The Community Schools’ educational program is characteristically student-centered and adapted to meet individual needs. The Community School and receiving districts are frequently involved in collaborative planning and transition between the programs.

Each community school is staffed with a teacher, a paraeducator and a Group Supervisor from the Probation Department.  To support individualized assistance and instruction, the average class size is 20 students. Special Education services are available to qualified students at all community school sites.

The Community Schools Program operates sites located throughout San Mateo County so students can easily walk, bicycle, or use public transportation to school.  Community School locations are:

  • Community School North in South San Francisco
  • Community School Central in Redwood City
  • Community School Gateway in San Mateo
  • Canyon Oaks Youth Center in Redwood City

The Court and Community Schools Program implements best practices for alternative education environments and provides positive education options modeled after those found in other successful County Court and Community Schools Programs.

The Court and Community Schools Program staff prides itself on student engagement. Students and staff thrive when both are positively engaged in the work they are doing. Our program strength lies in the relationships and rapport that staff builds with the students we serve.  We encourage students to be successful, take risks, and build positive relationships with adults, and their peers on campus.

The Court and Community Schools Program provides students with a culture of caring and respect. Students come to us with a variety of needs; we design our programming to support these needs. We hold ourselves to the same standards to which we hold students and model for them appropriate, positive behaviors.  We work together to support each other through collaboration and sharing of resources, information, curriculum, and best practices. Our administration encourages risk-taking, innovation, and experimentation to best support our student population.

One of the program’s goals is for students to find value and to invest in their education, not just be consumers of it. We strive to make learning relevant, and we rely on our positive relationships with students to accomplish positive changes in their attitudes about education.

If you have questions about a court case, contact the San Mateo County Courts.
If you want to know which Probation Officer is assigned to your case, call (650) 312-8807.