Monterey County Office of Education

Leadership, Support and Service to Prepare All Students for Success

Dr. Deneen Guss, County Superintendent of Schools

Welcome to Monterey

Welcome to Monterey where every day is a great day!  I’m Dr. Deneen Guss and it’s my honor to welcome you to beautiful Monterey County.

Monterey County has a rich history.  It was one of the original counties of California upon Statehood in 1850. Home to California’s earliest fishing villages and art colonies, Monterey County boasts a history as deep and varied as any in California.

Monterey County is well known for its breathtaking coastline and tourism in its coastal regions, agriculture in the Salinas Valley which extends through the heart of the County, and hosts more than 20 higher education and research institutions.

The County’s three major industries are Agriculture, Tourism, and Education.

Monterey County is known as the salad bowl of the world with its gentle mix of simplicity and sophistication.

Complete with vineyards, agriculture, the Monterey Bay Aquarium, a Marine Sanctuary and hospitality, it represents the best of Central California.

World class golf courses, farm to table dining, performing arts, and more than 80 prestigious art galleries are in Carmel by the Sea alone.

The coastline, which includes Big Sur, State Route 1, Pebble Beach and 17 Mile Drive on the Monterey Peninsula, has made the county world-famous with its wild flowers, tree covered mountains, quiet rivers and spectacular views.

Monterey County is also known as Steinbeck country.

It is home to State and National Historic landmarks, State and National Parks, forests and sanctuaries.

Most of Monterey County’s prosperity, beyond its fertile soil and natural beauty, is due to the education of it’s populus of over 415,000.

Monterey County is home to 15 elementary school districts, 3 high school districts, and 6 unified school districts, for a total of 24 separate school districts. The county’s 136 public schools serve the needs of nearly 78,000 students.

Public education is thriving in Monterey County. Over the past 10 years, graduation rates have risen significantly. At the same time, the achievement gaps for Latinx students have decreased dramatically with more students graduating college and career ready.

Monterey County schools are leaders in 21st century teaching methods such as Project-Based learning, Design Thinking, and Maker Education. In 2016, the Monterey County Office of Education was recognized by the California Department of Education as one of the top 8 demonstration sites in the state for arts, media, and entertainment pathways. The Media Center for Art, Education and Technology, known as MCAET, provides students the opportunity to learn 21 century skills in some of the top digital media broadcast studios in the state.

In this past year, the Monterey County Office of Education partnered with the Dan and Lillian King Foundation to send every eighth grade student to the live showing of Hamilton: An American Musical in San Francisco. Over 6,000 students explored concepts of democracy and citizenship through the use of creative inquiry, and evaluated narratives that combat growing inequities within today’s political and cultural movements. Monterey County is thriving with integrated learning opportunities through the lens of visual and performing arts.

The Monterey County Office of Education is dedicated to fostering the success of our students and the prosperity of our county through service to students, schools and the community.

On behalf of those we serve, we are pleased to welcome you to beautiful Monterey County, the perfect place to visit, live, work, and play.


Dr. Deneen Guss

County Superintendent
Phone: 831.755.0301

Carla Strobridge Stewart

Assistant to the County Superintendent
Phone: 831.784.4244

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