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Schools and Programs

Schools for All Learners

Created in 1960 with the merger of six school districts, San Juan Unified School District has a rich tradition of helping students find academic success and achievement. The district serves a 75-square mile area covering the communities of Arden-Arcade, Carmichael, Citrus Heights, Fair Oaks, Gold River and Orangevale. Today San Juan Unified is the 11th largest school district in California, employing more than 5,000 individuals and educating more than 40,000 students in our early learning, TK-12 and adult programs. 

San Juan Unified offers a variety of high-quality education environments to serve the learning needs of every student. To find out more about a specific school, use the school selection dropdown at the top of any web page. 

Neighborhood Schools

Every student residing in the San Juan Unified School District is assigned a neighborhood school based on their home address. Visit our School Finder to locate your neighborhood school. Many families will decide that their neighborhood school is their best option, with a well-rounded and rigorous curriculum. 

Open and Fundamental Schools

At one time, terms such as "fundamental" or "open" reflected unique educational strategies. Today, these strategies can be found in schools throughout the district. 

Typically, "fundamental" schools (Arcade, Casa Roble, Cowan, Dewey, El Camino, Green Oaks, Pasteur) have a more structured program and "open" schools (Cambridge, Carriage, Mission, Orangevale Open) have a more flexible structure. 

Cambridge Heights Elem.Mission Avenue Elem., and Orangevale Open K-8 are open-structured schools that provide learning opportunities in all subject areas as they relate to the individual needs and interests of the child. The emotional well-being of the student is a primary goal, and the community is used as an extension of the classroom. Active family participation is strongly encouraged.

CowanDeweyGreen OaksArcadePasteurCasa Roble and El Camino are fundamental schools that provide a highly structured learning environment founded in educational excellence. Each school strives to instill in each student a sense of responsibility, citizenship and pride in accomplishments. Active family participation is strongly encouraged.

In all district-wide open attendance school programs, parents choose to have students attend the programs, and parents are asked to sign an agreement that they will participate in school activities. With the exception of Casa Roble High School and Pasteur Middle School, these schools do not have neighborhood attendance boundaries; admission is through open enrollment. Casa Roble High School and Pasteur Middle School do have neighborhood attendance boundaries and do not require open enrollment.

Dual Language Immersion

The Dual Language Immersion Program is available at Thomas Edison Language Institute. It is a unique education program that builds student bilingualism and bi-literacy in English and Spanish. Instruction is provided by highly trained and caring teachers. Students continue  to learn standards-based content while they become fluent in two languages; linguistically and academically.

International Baccalaureate

The IB program awards an internationally recognized diploma to students who complete the curriculum. Thomas Kelly Elementary School is an IB Primary Years Program (PYP) candidate school, offering an education with an international focus, inquiry- and action-based learning, 

second-language classes and an understanding of how people work together. Winston Churchill Middle School and Mira Loma High School currently operate IB Middle Years and IB Diploma programs. Both schools are recognized as IB leaders in the Sacramento region. 

Other Accelerated Programs

Each site addresses the academic needs of its students with its own offerings.  Specific information is available by contacting the school. The District also has a specialized, self-contained Rapid Learner program which is available at Del Paso ManorDeterding, and Pershing Elementary schools. The District identifies qualified students and notifies parents of their eligibility to participate in the program. 

Career Pathways

Career pathways provide a multi-year sequence of training in a specific career or technical field. This training can lead directly to jobs in these fields or can provide a transition to higher-level training in a variety of settings. Visit our Career and Technical Education page to explore more than 25 programs at 

different schools across the district.


The Montessori Program is available at Cottage Elementary School. With the Montessori method, students receive a broad academic education in the context of a carefully planned, stimulating community and environment. The goal of Montessori education is to prepare children for a lifetime of creative thinking and learning. Montessori teachers at Cottage Elementary are highly trained and have both California state teaching credentials and Montessori teaching certificates.

Special Education

Respecting individual needs and learning styles, in collaboration with families, community and all district employees, our Special Education programs challenge and support students with special needs to develop independence and achieve their potential by providing effective instruction and related services in the least-restrictive setting. Placements are the responsibility of a student’s IEP team based on student needs and appropriate programs. Although Special Education students are entitled to participate in the open enrollment process, not all programs are available at all school sites. 

Alternative Schools

San Juan Unified School District offers various alternative schools and programs to assist students in completing their high school education, including the El Sereno Independent Study Program

Meraki, San Juan Unified's newest high school, offers personalized, hands-on learning leading to college and career readiness. Students have the flexibility to design their daily learning schedule, in collaboration with teachers and mentors. 

Blended Learning Academy is now located on three campuses within San Juan Unified School District: Encina Preparatory High School (grades 9-12) New San Juan High School (grades 9-12) and La Entrada Continuation High School (grades 11-12 only). This program offers an alternative learning environment for students who are struggling or have become credit deficient at the traditional high school setting

Our Schools