Santa Cruz County boasts a strong educational community, with several colleges and universities, plus schools and education programs for preschoolers, elementary age children, middle and high school students, and adults.
The Santa Cruz Area Chamber of Commerce has historically been active in the support of educational progress and expansion. From the beginning, the Chamber claimed the role of being a fundamental backing for educational growth, supporting the development of Cabrillo College in the 1950s and UCSC in the 1960s.
The Chamber understands that education is critical to the health and prosperity of Santa Cruz's economy. Not only does the continued productivity and competitiveness of our businesses and organizations depend on the ability of our workforce to acquire and apply new skills and knowledge, but also, the long-term vitality of the Santa Cruz economy requires the creation of new knowledge, new technology, and new means of application. Establishing and maintaining high quality educational opportunities from all available resources a cornerstone element contributing to the quality of life in the community.
That is why we have compiled a number of resources to help you determine whether or not your child is receiving the best education. Under the Education Resources page you will find helpful links, information about private schools in the county, and information on schools for adults and continuing students. In the Performance tab you will find various test score comparisons and readiness standards for Santa Cruz City school district. Please note that the benchmarks used in the Education Performance Levels tab to compare Santa Cruz city schools' performance against other schools were selected on the basis that the districts were also in coastal university towns.
Following this paragraph is the list of the most pressing educational issues in Santa Cruz County. One of the major concerns the Chamber has about local education is the availability of affordable housing for faculty and teachers. Another big point of advocacy for the Chamber is student work experience between the different colleges in the county.
Quality and Competitiveness of K-12 Education
The chamber monitors K-12 public education performance using available statistical measures. With other business groups that advocate for improved achievements by local students. See our Education performance levels page to view a break down of what we found when reviewing Santa Cruz County schools. Please note that we merely picked Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo as our benchmarks based on the fact they are both university beach towns.
Funding of K-12 Education
The Chamber actively advocates for the funding of local public K-12 education, serving both ad hoc funding committees and campaign committees that have successfully passed K-12 funding for local schools.
Access to and Support for Private K-12 Education
The Chamber maintains relationships with local private K-12 education institutions and supports the activities of their students.
Teacher Recruitment and Teacher Housing
The Chamber is an active participant in groups attempting to improve the availability of affordable housing to teachers and staff and especially housing available to newly recruited K-12 faculty members. The Chamber has worked with school districts to encourage public private partnerships to develop such housing.
Local Workforce Preparation
A key element of local competitiveness is the preparation and ongoing education of the local workforce.
Workforce Investment Board
Chamber representatives continue to serve on the Workforce Investment Board that serves Santa Cruz County. The Chamber actively engages its members in Workforce Investment Board activities.
Cabrillo College workforce development program
The Chamber works with its members to engage with Cabrillo College in the development of programs necessary to meet future employment needs and variety of areas from Business technologies and healthcare to construction and agriculture.
Continuing Education Programs
In addition to the continuing education programs produced by the Chamber it continues to be an active proponent of local education institutions', workforce development, and continuing education programs including: Cabrillo College and Cabrillo extension, UCSC Extension, Santa Cruz County Board of Education Adult Education.
University of California Santa Cruz
UCSC is both a critical component of the economic structure of Santa Cruz County and a critical source of new enterprises and professional employees. Key issues which the chamber continues to advocate include:
Factors impacting faculty recruitment are of particular interest to the Chamber. These factors include the availability of affordable and appropriate housing to prospective faculty members to maintain the quality of K-12 education in Santa Cruz County.
Technology Development and Transfer
UCSC is also a key source of spinoff technology development and research institutions related to the university. The chamber works with elements of the university to encourage these activities and support their success. The Chamber is also engaged in student entrepreneurship activities.
Long-range Development Planning and Land use
The key elements of future UCSC growth is the adoption and implementation of the university's long-range development plan. The chamber is both an active participant in that planning and, especially, in the plan's implementation through local governments and private investment.
Housing for students is a complex issue in Santa Cruz County. The Chamber is working with the university to encourage on-campus housing as well as working within the community to develop appropriate housing for students.
Student Work Experience Training
The Chamber strongly advocates engaging students' of UCSC and students' of other schools to obtain local work experience and to make the best use of these resources in attracting those students to become part of the Santa Cruz County workforce.
University of California, Santa Cruz
California State University Monterey Bay
Santa Cruz City Schools
Santa Cruz County Office of Education
List of Public, Private, and Alternative schools as of 3 March 2017 via Wikipedia
5 Branches Graduate School of Chinese Medicine