Petaluma High School was founded in 1873 and is located right outside of historic downtown Petaluma. Petaluma is a suburban town that is about 32 miles north of San Francisco. It is one of the two high schools that are part of the Petaluma City Schools district. The Petaluma City Schools district is currently lead by their superintendent Gary Callahan and assistant superintendent Cliff DeGraw. Petaluma High's current principal is David Stirrat and they have two assistant principals, Debi Richardson and Giovanni Napoli. There are currently 1,335 students enrolled at Petaluma High. Petaluma High School's colors are purple and white and they are represented by their mascot, the trojans. Petaluma prides itself on their commitment to prepare students for their future college or career goals and they boast a 98.7% graduation rate, which is higher than the district graduation rate at about 88%. They have a very modern and progressive curriculum which is heavily focused on the Common Core State Standards.
Petaluma High School is located right in the middle of a neighborhood that is less than a mile away from downtown. The school is built in a very traditional fashion in which most of the classrooms are in the main building, besides the buildings they have had to add due to growth of the population. The school is still equip with indoor lockers that the students share with a "locker buddy". The students dress very casually to school (mostly jeans and tee shirts with a hoodie). It seems as if the students each have their own cliques, but in class students do pretty well working with different people in their groups that they may not be friends with (with the exception of a couple students). I have only had a chance to interact with the staff in the math department. They seem to be really friendly towards one another and have a meeting every Wednesday after school to discuss lesson plans, assessments, different methods of teaching, etc. They are all very cooperative and work well as a team to teach the students the best they possible can.
Petaluma is an interesting town because it is mostly suburban, but there is a lot of farmland as well. However, Petaluma High is built closer to the downtown/suburban part of the city instead of the farmland. It is right next to several shops, restaurants, coffee shops, business centers, and even a movie theater. Many of the students walk to school because they live in the houses that surround the school. I asked several students where they liked to go hang out after school and I got the unanimous response, "downtown Petaluma". It makes perfect sense that students would want to hang out there after school because it is not only close to the school, it also has so many places for them to go and things for them to do. The area where all the houses are seem very safe and well kept; however I did notice a large homeless population hanging out around the downtown area. The students did not seem to be bothered or even phased by this. Although there seemed to be quite a few homeless people, the living conditions seemed to be very nice and the housing areas are well maintained.
The Petaluma High School community includes staff, students, parents and community members who know each other individually and form connections to support student success. We provide a strong academic program, a wide variety of co-curricular activities and awareness of post-secondary options enabling students to direct their own futures. We…
Provide a personalized approach to school and education and support each individual student
Ensure academic achievement at all levels for all students
Encourage student participation in career pathways
Engage students in their development of a future vision for post secondary success.
Petaluma High School provides relevant, rigorous, engaging learning which prepares students for current and future opportunities and challenges. We pursue 21st century skills while honoring the traditions and legacies of our school and community.
√What are the family incomes of students at Petaluma High School? To determine this, we look at the number of students who qualify for free or reduced lunches, a classification by the US federal government. To qualify for a reduced price meal, family income needs to be below 185% of the federal poverty guidelines. For a family of 4, this means an income of around $45,000 or below. To qualify for a free meal, family income needs to be below 130% of the federal poverty guidelines. For a family of 4, this means an income of around $32,000 or below. The lower the percentage of students who qualify for free or reduced price meals, the higher the income levels are likely to be. At Petaluma High, 6.1% of students qualify for reduced-price lunches, and 23.6% qualify for free lunches. This means Petaluma High has a low poverty level. The overwhelming majority of students at Petaluma High don't qualify for free or reduced price lunches. Petaluma is thus likely to be an affluent community, with quite high family incomes.
Petaluma High School goes by the Common Core State Standards. For more information please click here.
The Common Core is a set of high-quality academic standards in mathematics and English language arts/literacy (ELA). These learning goals outline what a student should know and be able to do at the end of each grade. The standards were created to ensure that all students graduate from high school with the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in college, career, and life, regardless of where they live.
The standards are:
Research- and evidence-based
Clear, understandable, and consistent
Aligned with college and career expectations
Based on rigorous content and application of knowledge through higher-order thinking skills
Built upon the strengths and lessons of current state standards
Informed by other top performing countries in order to prepare all students for success in our global economy and society
For the official list of professional responsibilities and pedagogical approaches to teaching, please click here.
The educator believes in the worth and dignity of human beings. The educator recognizes the supreme importance of the pursuit of truth, devotion to excellence, and the nurture of democratic citizenship. The educator regards as essential to these goals the protection of freedom to learn and to teach and the guarantee of equal educational opportunity for all. The educator accepts the responsibility to practice the profession according to the highest ethical standards.
SAT Scores The average composite SAT score is a 1620 out of 2400, compared to a national average of 1500. Each year, roughly 243 students at Petaluma High School take the SAT. This is an above-average SAT score, putting Petaluma High School in the top 25% of all California high schools and well above the national average (69% of students score above the national average). This is a notable academic achievement that distinguishes Petaluma High as a high-achieving school.
ACT Scores At Petaluma High School, the average ACT composite score was 24, compared to the nationwide average of 20. Each year, roughly 63 out of 1305 total students take the ACT. This is very good performance, putting Petaluma High in the top 25% of high schools in California by ACT score. Nationwide, a 24 on the ACT is 74th percentile, so most ACT test takers at Petaluma High are well above average.
A-G Requirements* A) History/Social Science - 2 years required B) English – 4 years required C) Mathematics – 3 years required, 4 years recommend (minimum through Algebra 2/Math 3) D) Laboratory Science – 2 years required, 3 years recommended (1 Physcial, 1 Biological) E) Language Other than English – 2 years required, 3 years recommended (must be same language) F) Visual & Performing Arts – 1 year required G) College Prep Elective – 1 year required
Here is a brief overview of Petaluma High School's discipline policy. For more detailed information click here.
Referrals and write ups are used for misbehavior in the classroom. When a referral is given, students must report to the principal's office immediately.
If a determination is made that cheating has occurred, the student will receive a failing grade on the assignment and the teacher will make a good faith effort to contact a parent as soon as possible. For repeated incidents, a student will be referred for disciplinary action.
Students demonstrating hate-motivated behavior shall be disciplined and provides counseling and appropriate sensitivity training.
Students who harass other students shall be subject to appropriate discipline, up to and including counseling, suspension and/or expulsion.