About South School


Our mission at South Hillsborough School is to work in partnership with students, parents and other community members to educate the whole child in an academically rigorous but nurturing environment, and to empower each child to become a contributing member and responsible participant in our changing world.

Set by a creek in a lovely wooded area, the collegiality of the school is enhanced through its open-pod configuration. A two-story library/media center is the heart of the school, with our administrative offices, Learning Center, and K-5 classroom pods extending from its central core. Capitalizing on the unique architecture, students experience instruction in a variety of educational settings allowing them to move freely from classroom to classroom receiving instruction from different teachers. Flexible differentiated groupings based on students’ readiness, interests and learning styles are created. Adjacent to each classroom is an enclosed small instruction room, providing an alternative for instructional practice or an intimate setting for each class’ learning community. The “flow” of the building generates a feeling of warmth and communication among students and faculty. This instrumental flow is extended through our Kindergarten and 5th grade classes in other campus buildings in close proximity to the main building.

Our school houses 12 General Education Classrooms (K-5), a Learning Center, an Innovation Lab, a Library, a Resource Room, a Music Room, a Reading Specialist Room, a Counselor/Psychologist office, a Speech & Language room, a Multi-Purpose Room, and a Main Office/Principal Office. We also have an after school Recreation Department program located in a room on campus.

South Hillsborough School is one of three elementary schools serving the children of Hillsborough, California. Our students are drawn from an upper socio-economic community. As of October 2016, our enrollment was 237 students K-5. The student body is 62% Caucasian, 21.5% Asian, .04% Filipino, 3.8% Hispanic or Latino, 1.3 % African American, .08% American Indian or Alaska Native, 9.7% Multiple Races. Within our population: .08% English learners, and 11% of the student population are in Special Education.

Differentiating instruction for student success is an area of focus for South School. Teacher professional development in this area has been and will continue to be offered in this area. We respect each child as an individual and believe that each child can achieve mastery of our high standards curriculum. We provide direct instruction in the basic skills. We enrich learning through highly motivating, hands-on activities and through the use of varied materials. Through cooperative and individualized instruction strategies, we ensure that every child is successful. We stress reading, writing, oral language, art, mathematics, and computer skills across all subject areas. We offer strong programs in the visual and performing arts and physical education.

The Essential Outcomes are a main focus for students’ academic and social development. Students are guided to become people of good character, innovators, problem solvers, effective communicators, global citizens, lifelong learners, and effective users of information in technology and media, all of which is critical to the child-centered education we provide South Students.

Curriculum developed and implemented by the District’s counselors and teachers support students social-emotional and academic well-being. Character education through the Kimochis Character Program, as well as teaching strategies reinforce healthy relationships among students is at the core of our SEL (Social-Emotional Learning) work. The staff has also embarked on the work of Costa and Kallick: The 16 Habits of Mind which offers students strategies for becoming aware of their thinking about and focus towards learning. Together, the development of the Essential Outcomes and building an awareness of one’s thinking have complemented the common core by bringing depth and breadth into the classrooms and supporting emotional and academic goals for each student.

The counselor also provides opportunity to connect with parents at each grade level to discuss grade level issues and child development. These conversations occur throughout the year to support communication between home and school. In concert with these types of conversations, Principal Chats occur each trimester with parents to establish a strong home-school connection.

We provide an academically rigorous, nurturing and safe learning environment. We actively engage both students and parents in the life of the school and the decisions that affect them. We foster each child's motivation to learn, to display concern for others and to develop a sense of personal responsibility. The continual introduction of new technologies to South School has changed the way students are taught and the way they learn. To that end, South teachers are spending time redesigning and aligning curriculum K-5 with a backward design model – with the objective focusing on what we want students to understand. We are taking a big picture look at curriculum design, which will prepare our staff and students for the common core standards.

South School employs a full-time reading specialist, full-time counselor/psychologist, part-time enrichment teacher, full-time credentialed librarian, part-time physical education, and music teachers, a full-time resource specialist, and part-time K-5 instructional aides who work directly with students.


    • 300 El Cerrito Avenue
    • Hillsborough,
    • CA
    • 94010
  • Phone (650) 342-5193
  • Fax (650) 342-6964

Our schools have received 26 California Distinguished School Awards, 7 National Blue Ribbon Awards, and 29 Kent Awards for Innovative Programs. Our success is due to high quality staff, committed and involved families and community members, a supportive Board, a cohesive vision, and a strong commitment to excellence.
Interested in current district discussions, view Superintendent Reports here.

More than two decades of research findings are unequivocal: the most important aspect of a school in terms of student learning is teacher quality, and our teachers are among the best!

Students in K-2 have access to a reading specialist. 3rd-5th grade students participate in our Innovation Labs where they create and explore. K-5 students participate in music classes, and 4th-8th grade students have access to instrument instruction. Spanish instruction begins in 4th grade, and Mandarin is offered in our middle school. All of our schools have a dedicated counselor, teacher librarian, physical educator, and more!

Through the generosity of donors, the Hillsborough Schools Foundation pledged $3.5 million to our schools for this school year. Last year's Fund-A-Need raised funds for traffic and safety. Thank you!
Interested in current district discussions, view Superintendent Reports here.

Click on "News" for an archive of all of our E-Notify messages. Also, check out our Twitter feed on our home page for more information about our award-winning schools.
Interested in current district discussions, view Superintendent Reports here.

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