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Home » Here are the top-rated schools in Manhattan Beach, CA

Here are the top-rated schools in Manhattan Beach, CA

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  • Known as among the renowned “Beach Cities” of California’s South Bay, Manhattan Beach is an ideal place for excitement and fun in an upscale setting.
  • While many regard Manhattan Beach as a vacation place, its residents swear to its desirability as a wonderful place to live.
  • Apart from the usual perks of great luxury living offered here, Manhattan Beach is proud of its exceptional educational system.
  • The Manhattan Beach Unified School District (MBUSD), the city’s public school system, ranks as Niche.com’s 22nd best school district (out of 487) throughout California.
  • All schools under MBUSD are top-ranked, having received the A+ rating on Niche.com.
    • Mira Costa High School is renowned for its Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) curriculum.
    • Manhattan Beach Middle School provides opportunities for an exploratory elective course in the fine or practical arts.
    • Aside from the academic excellence they offer to their students, Aurelia Pennekamp Elementary School also inspires the youth to appreciate growing, harvesting, and eating or selling their own organically grown food.
    • Meadows Avenue Elementary School has earned the California State Board of Education’s California Distinguished School award.
    • Pacific Elementary School takes pride in its holistic development approach.
    • Opal Robinson Elementary School is recognized by the state and on the national level as a California Gold Ribbon and National Blue Ribbon School.
    • Grand View Elementary offers a variety of enrichment programs both within the campus grounds and outside.
  • The community pitches into uplift educational standards in the area through the Manhattan Beach Educational Foundation, a local fundraising initiative.
  • There are also a number of private schools located within city limits for more school options.
  • Manhattan Beach also provides a variety of local services and attractions that don’t limit learning to the classroom setting.
  • Secure a good future for your kids while enjoying all the finest things in life. Get started on your real estate journey in Manhattan Beach, CA.

One of the renowned “Beach Cities” of California’s South Bay, Manhattan Beach is a warm and inviting community. Its upscale, resort-like lifestyle perfectly matches its exquisite location.

Manhattan Beach is the ideal setting to experience and enjoy unparalleled luxury and sophistication every day. Here, high-end dining and shopping experiences complement long stretches of pristine, uncluttered beaches facing the vast Pacific Ocean.

Its paradise-like qualities might make Manhattan Beach sound like the perfect destination for your next vacation, but it is far more than just that. Just ask the 35,500 people that call this city home.

This sunny community is, in fact, an outstanding place to own a luxurious beach villa or waterfront estate. If you have ever dreamed of owning prime real estate on an idyllic shoreline, this place is worth your attention. Not only will you enjoy convenient access to its many commercial and recreational highlights, you also have high-quality local amenities nearby. These crucial community resources include a notable selection of top-rated educational institutions.

An overview of the quality of education in Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach has a sterling reputation as a desirable Southern California suburb for quality education. It is served by a top-ranked public school system, the Manhattan Beach Unified School District (MBUSD), which currently ranks as Niche.com’s 22nd best school district (out of 487) throughout California. The website also ranks the MBUSD 11th best out of 105 school districts serving the general Los Angeles area.

The Manhattan Beach Unified School District operates five elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school — all of which are rated A+ on Niche.com. Below is a summary of the essential statistics that describe this local school system overall:

Total student population: 6,776
Average student-to-teacher ratio: 26:1
Reading proficiency rating: 84%
Math proficiency rating: 74%

The California Department of Education also affirmed the academic excellence of the MBUSD schools. In 2017 and 2018, the agency revealed data that showed the school district leading the state in English (reading) and Math proficiency test results.

A closer look at the schools of the Manhattan Beach Unified School District

Are you moving to Manhattan Beach with a young, growing family? Look for homes and communities that keep you close to these top-performing local schools:

  • Mira Costa High School
  • 1401 Artesia Boulevard, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 2,514
    Student-to-teacher ratio: 26:1
    Reading proficiency rating: 85%
    Math proficiency rating: 67%

    Average graduation rate: 98%
    Average SAT scores: 1280 (based on 698 responses)
    Average ACT composite scores: 30 (based on 538 responses)

    The lone high school in the MBUSD and one of the most renowned nationally among all Manhattan Beach schools, this Grade 9-12 school ranks number 58 out of 1,816 public high schools in California, according to Niche.com.

    The home of the green and gold Mustangs, MCHS or simply “Costa” to its local student populace, was established in 1950. All homeowners residing in Manhattan Beach are eligible to attend this school. Some Redondo Beach residents from the 90278 zip code are also allowed to attend Mira Costa.

    Mira Costa High School is renowned for its Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) curriculum, earning it the 102nd spot on Niche.com’s list of 829 rated schools for STEM education in California.

    This school also has a notable range of Advanced Placement courses.
    Approximately 39% of its student population are enrolled in these programs.

    Opportunities for extra-curricular activities are wide and varied. Among the most notable examples is the Beach Cities Robotics team, which is an active collaboration with the Redondo Union High School in Redondo Beach.

    Growth is expected to continue for this trailblazing institution, with a new athletic center currently in the works. In February 2019, Mira Costa High School broke ground on the $38 million project which aims to add a state of the art athletic complex to the campus by fall 2020. The facility will include a 20,000-square-foot gym, a dedicated area for sports medicine, a dance room, and a 60-person classroom

  • Manhattan Beach Middle School
  • 1501 North Redondo Avenue, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 1,467
    Student-to-teacher ratio: 25:1
    Reading proficiency rating: 82%
    Math proficiency rating: 72%

    Sixth to eighth graders living attend the Manhattan Beach Middle School. Opened only in 1998, MBMS is one of the newer schools in the city, and its state-of-the-art facilities place it at number 20 out of 2,575 California public middle schools based on Niche.com rankings.

    As a bridge between children’s primary and high school-level education, Manhattan Beach Middle School commits to delivering a holistic development program built around a student-centered curriculum.

    In addition to essential academic subjects like Math, English, and Science, the school also provides opportunities for an exploratory elective course in the fine or practical arts. An alternative to the exploratory elective is a year-long elective, which extends learning opportunities in vocal or instrumental music.

    Sixth graders receive integrated lessons in reading, writing, and the social sciences in a dedicated “humanities block.” Seventh and eighth graders have the option to attend Spanish, French, or Mandarin classes.

  • Aurelia Pennekamp Elementary School
  • 10 South Rowell Avenue, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 520
    Average student-to-teacher ratio: 27:1
    Reading proficiency rating: 85%
    Math proficiency rating: 83%

    Originally known as the Curtis St. School when it opened in 1955, this school started out with just 12 classrooms and two kindergartens. Just a few months later, it was renamed to honor Aurelia Pennekamp, a local resident who would serve the Manhattan Beach School District over a 30-year career.

    Today, this school serves young Manhattan Beach children at the Kindergarten to Fifth Grade levels. Niche.com ranks it number 22 out of 5,914 public elementary schools in California, given its students’ exceptional proficiency scores in English/Reading (85%) and Math (83%).

    The home of the Pennekamp Dragons offers more than academic excellence. On the school premises, there is a Growing Great Garden, which serves as a practical learning environment for the school’s young students to appreciate growing, harvesting, and eating or selling their own organically grown food.

    The school also has a laboratory with a dedicated science specialist that supplements classroom lessons with engaging hands-on experiments and activities.

  • Meadows Avenue Elementary School
  • 1200 North Meadows Avenue, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 430
    Average student-to-teacher ratio: 25:
    Reading proficiency rating: 82%
    Math proficiency rating: 79%

    This K-5 school opened in 1980 and is currently ranked number 28 out of 5,914 California public elementary schools on Niche.com. With decently sized classrooms translating into consistently above-average reading and mathematics proficiency scores, it has earned the California State Board of Education’s California Distinguished School award. The recognition puts it in the company of the state’s top 5% schools.

    Like many of its peers in the Manhattan Beach Unified Schools District, Meadows Avenue Elementary benefits from a multi-faceted approach to education. Learning and development initiatives are a joint effort of school officials with parents, who share their input and do a variety of fundraising initiatives to ensure continuous development for the school’s curricular and extra-curricular programs.

  • Pacific Elementary School
  • 1200 Pacific Avenue, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 646
    Student-to-teacher ratio: 25:1
    Reading proficiency rating: 87%
    Math proficiency rating: 82%

    Ranked 40th out of 5,914 public elementary schools in California, Pacific Elementary School is another exceptional option that makes living in Manhattan Beach a smart choice.

    This school was opened in 1980, occupying a piece of Manhattan Beach history. The building at the corner of Pacific Avenue and Manhattan Beach Boulevard (formerly Center Street) was the site of the city’s first-ever four-classroom schoolhouse. The school grounds are hard to miss, with its playing fields visible along Manhattan Beach Boulevard.

    Pacific Elementary School takes pride in its holistic development approach. Anchored around a select group of teachers and building staff, the school established a Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) initiative dedicated to ensuring social and emotional guidance to complement students’ academic growth.

    There are also various enrichment initiatives, like the Friendship Club, which lays the groundwork for healthy social skills for children. The Panther Buddies system pairs classrooms at different grade levels and engages them in collaborative projects and activities throughout the school year.

  • Opal Robinson Elementary School
  • 80 Morningside Drive, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 422
    Student-to-teacher ratio: 23:1
    Reading proficiency rating: 88%
    Math proficiency rating: 80%

    With an impressive 23:1 student-to-teacher ratio, Robinson Elementary provides quality education in well-managed learning environments. Home to the Riptides, this school is recognized by the state and on the national level as a California Gold Ribbon and National Blue Ribbon School.

    Niche.com ranks this K-5 school number 54 out of 5,914 public elementary schools in California.

    In addition to attracting families with its competitive academic program that has led to high reading (88%) and math (80%) proficiency scores, the school also boasts of a New Family Buddy Program. This initiative makes newly relocated families feel right at home in their new school and neighborhood and helps build strong ties between the whole Robinson Elementary community for the long-term.

  • Grand View Elementary School
  • 455 24th Street, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

    Total student population: 731
    Student-to-teacher ratio: 26:1
    Reading proficiency rating: 85%
    Math proficiency rating: 78%

    With average proficiency scores of 85% for reading and 78% for math, this K-5 school is claims the 79th spot out of 5,914 public elementary schools in California in Niche.com’s statewide school rankings.

    Grand View Elementary offers a variety of enrichment programs both within the campus grounds and outside. With help from the Parents and Teachers Association, the school organizes field trips to notable destinations in and around Manhattan Beach, from local community services like the city’s fire department, to exciting educational attractions like the nearby Round House Aquarium to the California Science Center in Los Angeles.

    The school also extends supplementary academic and extra-curricular learning opportunities through its Gator After School Program.

    Note: All statistics and ratings are based on Niche.com’s figures for the 2019-20 academic year.

    A commitment from the community: The Manhattan Beach Educational Foundation

    Behind the strong local school system is a strong local community that works together to ensure that all Manhattan Beach youth get the high-quality education they deserve. The Manhattan Beach Educational Foundation is a local fundraising initiative that augments state funding to support local schools, educators, and learning programs in the city.

    The organization has been instrumental in the continuous improvement of educational facilities and services in Manhattan Beach since 1983. The MBEF has contributed more than $75 million in funding for the local school district through the past three and a half decades.

    For the 2019-20 academic year, the MBEF raised and donated a total of $6.5 million to the Manhattan Beach Unified School District. The funding is being used to support initiatives ranging from class size reduction, to music and arts events, to student support programs, and everything in between.

    Private schools in Manhattan Beach

    Manhattan Beach residents can also choose to enroll their children in a number of private schools located within city limits:

    • del Sol School (PK, K), 1700 Manhattan Beach Boulevard
    • Journey of Faith Christian School (PK, K), 1243 Artesia Boulevard
    • Montessori School of Manhattan Beach (PK, K), 315 South Peck Avenue
    • Manhattan Academy (PK-4), 1740 Manhattan Beach Boulevard
    • American Martyrs Catholic School (K-8), 1701 Laurel Avenue
    • Beach Cities Learning Center (5-12), 1431 15th Street, Buildings C and D

    Learning outside the classroom: A vibrant environment for holistic learning and growth

    In Manhattan Beach, a variety of local services and attractions ensure that children get the most of their development, not only in the academic sense but also in other facets such as their social lives and cultural/community involvement. Here are some examples:

  • Manhattan Beach Botanical Garden
  • Located in Polliwog Park, the city’s largest and most popular park, this local green space features a breathtaking collection of plants, mostly comprising species native to California. Not only is this an exceptional place to learn about local flora, it also presents outstanding spots for peaceful and uninterrupted reading or studying.

  • Manhattan Beach Historical Society
  • The Manhattan Beach Historical Society manages and operates a charming Beach Cottage Museum in Polliwog Park. The structure is an actual beach cottage that was relocated in the late 1980s. Beautifully preserving the city’s distinctive resort town architecture while establishing a memorable site for learning the rest of its history, the cottage is a genuine local treasure that remains standing today thanks to the passion of community volunteers.

  • Manhattan Beach Art Center and Riley Arts Center
  • Serving as ideal complements to the Young at Art nonprofit arts appreciation program that is incorporated as a district-wide program across Manhattan Beach schools, these two galleries are excellent places to visit to find the latest and most influential art pieces from local, national, and international artists. The Manhattan Beach Art Center even offers its facilities for art education and production classes and workshops.

  • Manhattan Beach Library
  • Located along Highland Avenue, this library is built for modern learners. In addition to a wide selection of books, visitors can also find extensive catalogs of movies and music to satisfy their multimedia learning needs.

    This library also opens its doors to visitors for scheduled special events designed for children, teens, and entire families.

    There are also various community initiatives that promote not just the education, but the overall well-being of youth living in the South Bay area.

    A good example of this is the weekly “Walking School Bus” and “Walking Wednesdays” programs spearheaded by the Beach Cities Health District in 2011. These initiatives encourage elementary level students, guided by parent volunteers, to walk to school along safe, designated routes.

    Programs like these support the local school districts in establishing a healthy, active, and socially connected lifestyles early on in children’s lives, while also contributing to the local communities’ environmental preservation efforts by discouraging short car trips.

    Learn more about living in Manhattan Beach with Marco de Longville

    If you want to secure a good future for your kids while enjoying the best of Southern California’s upscale, sophisticated living, Manhattan Beach is the ideal place to find your dream home. With its exceptional educational facilities and personnel complemented by strong community support and enriching local experiences, this South Bay city has the ideal environment for your children’s well-rounded growth and development.

    Explore the fine selection of Manhattan Beach homes for sale with me, Marco de Longville, and discover why purchasing and owning a home here is a worthwhile investment. Call 213.675.0197 or send me an email at marco(dotted)delongeville(at)vistasir(dotted)com today for more information.