The Blue and Gold

High School Choices

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 High School Choices


It’s the time of year when 8th graders are considering which high school to attend. For some it may be an easier choice because of siblings or family traditions, but for others the many choices can be overwhelming. Foster City residents are zoned to Hillsdale and San Mateo, but many choose private schools or transfer to other San Mateo Union High Schools. In fact, most 8th graders have already finished shadowing at the neighboring high schools.  


San Mateo High

One of the high schools that students are considering is San Mateo high school, known for  its programs and spirit. The school was founded in 1902 to welcome the increasing number of students migrating into the San Mateo area. San Mateo High School is located at 506 N Delaware St., on the east side of the 101 highway, near Coyote Point. From Foster City, it takes approximately 15 minutes, with the usual traffic. Well-known programs include the Performing Arts and Biotech. They are proud to offer a variety of performing art classes.  With new Performing Arts Center boasting 1540 seats, all are invited to attend performances.The Biotechnology class is composed of training, practice, and demonstration of lab operation. There are many extracurricular programs, from dance to musicals and tackle football and volleyball. Pep Rallies are popular events to promote school spirit. A Bowditch alumni, says that “the pep rallies are always really fun, and better than the other schools.” Pep rallies include games and videos explaining upcoming fundraisers.


Hillsdale High

Hillsdale High School is another option in the San Mateo Union High School District. The school is located on 3115 Del Monte St, San Mateo. There are approximately 1,385 students enrolled this year. The school is known for its unique organization. Students are divided into four separate learning communities, called Houses. They stay with their assigned House, and teachers, for two years until they are distributed into another House, in 11th and 12th grades. The 9th and 10th grade Houses include Florence, Kyoto, Oaxaca, and Marrakech. Hillsdale High also has a number of clubs ranging including an Art club and a  Creative Writing  club. The school offers a number sports including Girls Tennis, Boys Basketball and Football. Hillsale High also allows students to take extra classes (AP classes) to further heighten students’ GPA. This school is a great choice for all students.


Aragon High

Aragon High School, another popular high school in the San Mateo Union High School District, is well known for its academics, with higher test scores than the California average. Aragon was established in 1961 to accommodate the growing number of students in the San Mateo area. Aragon is located on 900 Alameda de las Pulgas, near Highway 92. From Foster City, it takes 15 -20 minutes by car to get to the school. Aragon’s campus boasts a large swimming pool, two gyms, biotech labs, a robotics shop, a 600 seat theater, eight tennis courts, a softball field, and a baseball field. In 2015, Aragon was ranked the 100th best public high school in the country by Newsweek. It also has an impressive amount of clubs and after school activities which makes it a great fit for many students.  


Junipero Serra High School

Serra High School is an all boys private school located at 451 W 20th Ave, in San Mateo. It is a Catholic school, so that is something to consider; however, Junipero Serra, “welcomes students and families of all faiths.” As a prestigious, private school, the yearly tuition is $19,000 – $20,405. It is well worth the price, with a 14:1 student to teacher ratio and an average SAT score of 1250. Serra receives high ratings by several high school rating websites. In fact, it was graded 137th out of 875 College Preparatory Private schools in California. Therefore, Junipero Serra High School is a great choice due to its continued academic standard of excellence.


These four schools have an equal amount of spirit and academic opportunities. They each have their own pros and cons, but they also have their own unique communities. The final decision is up to you.


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