Alternative Education

Building Rigor, Relevance and Relationships in Alternative Education Classrooms

The Sonoma County Office of Education (SCOE) operates alternative schools for Sonoma County students who are seriously at risk of school and/or societal failure. These schools provide small school settings for referred students who are experiencing difficulties in traditional schools, offer home and independent study alternatives, and deliver daily instruction for incarcerated youth and juvenile wards of the court. In operating these programs, SCOE strives to offer education alternatives that connect students to positive opportunities for learning.

Alternative Education Student

Alternative Education Programs (7:02) | Sept 2012
In this video, students and teachers discuss the impact of SCOE’s foster youth tutoring and Community School programs.

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Programs & Services

Community Schools
The purpose of Community School is to retain students in the education system during periods when they are experiencing problems that put them at serious risk of dropping out. The emphasis of the program is to reestablish students’ educational direction. The goal is for students to successfully transition back to a regular school setting or another learning environment that meets their needs. For students who elect to remain in Community School, the program is designed to help them meet their educational and academic goals. Learn more about Community Schools.


Court Schools
Court Schools provide instruction for school-age children and youth residing in court-supervised programs, such as Juvenile Hall, Probation Camp, and Sierra Girls Center.


Countywide Plan for Expelled Students
In addition to offering alternative school programs for students, the Alternative Education department coordinates the development of the Countywide Plan for Providing Educational Services to All Expelled Students in Sonoma County as required by Education Code Section 48926. The plan is updated every three years.

2012 Countywide Plan for Expelled Students (pdf)
2009 Countywide Plan for Expelled Students (pdf)