Mission, Philosophy, & Values

Teenagers Are "Wired To Learn"

High School is too important a time to leave up to chance.
Our team of faculty and staff are trained professionals, deeply knowledgeable both in our subject areas as well as in adolescent development. We have created a rich, multi-faceted, dynamic program that is designed to ensure the success of all of our students in all aspects of their lives.

High school students have extraordinary capacities that are ready to emerge… or could go dormant.
The teenage brain is wired to take risks, and is ruled by impulse rather than logic because the prefrontal cortex is not yet developed. In an environment that encourages healthy risk-taking and where the adolescent is exposed to opportunity, this natural phase of development can lead to an expanded sense of self and greater access to personal capacities.

Teens need a rich, challenging, multifaceted program to fuel their natural curiosity.
Our students must complete a rigorous liberal arts curriculum that includes core and elective courses in humanities (history and literature), math and science, world languages, and the arts. Exploratory classes, the Intersession Program, Physical Education, Health & Wellness, and College Counseling broaden and deepen their educational experience.

Teachers can make or break teenagers' natural curiosity about the world and drive to know themselves.
All of our teachers are great teachers. We recruit nationally, evaluate based on their teaching, and provide them with regular training and opportunities to further their passions.

Teenagers profoundly influence, and are influenced by, their classmates.
Ethics and character are being developed at the same time that your child is developing an overwhelming need to fit in socially. Additionally, peer influence becomes more dominant than parental influence. Having a motivated, engaged, supportive peer group is deeply important to a teen's ability to thrive.

“High school is one of the most critical and complex times in a person’s life. It’s the time when students are trying to navigate the road between adolescence and adulthood.” –Andrew Del Banco, Columbia University

Our Mission

Sonoma Academy calls its students to be creative, ethical, and committed to learning. The school nurtures inspiring teachers and engages with the surrounding community, and its students communicate across cultures as they prepare to become leaders in a dynamic world.

The Honor Code

Doing the right thing is a fundamental component of what makes SA "so SA" and allows our students to thrive in an environment of mutual respect, trust, and cooperation. Of course, like every school, we have a handbook of policies and school rules, but our students wanted to encapsulate the underlying spirit of good citizenship we uphold and promote at the school in their own unique way.

Our Honor Code evolved out of this desire and was ultimately developed by a team of students (now alumni) and staffulty, in collaboration with the entirety of the student body, faculty, and administration. Illustrated by a Sonoma Academy student who wished to remain anonymous, our Honor Code images adorn most classrooms and can be found throughout the school.

We consider our Honor Code a dialogue that continues to develop over time.
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2500 Farmers Lane 
Santa Rosa, CA 95404 
(707) 545-1770 

Sonoma Academy Is...

...the only private, independent, college preparatory high school in Sonoma County. On our beautiful campus nestled at the base of Taylor Mountain in Southeastern Santa Rosa, our students are able to explore their interests and passions in a rigorous and inspiring environment that develops a lifelong love of learning and prepares them for college and beyond.

Sonoma Academy admits students of any race, color, religion, ethnicity or national origin, citizenship, gender or gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, or disability, to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. The school does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, ethnicity or national origin, citizenship, gender or gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, or disability in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and tuition assistance programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.