PUSD at a Glance
The Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD) serves approximately 17,000 Kindergarten through 12th grade students who reside in Pasadena, Altadena and Sierra Madre. There are a total of 26 schools in the district, including 18 sites serving elementary grades (K-5), 7 sites serving grades 6-8, and 4 sites serving grades 9-12. Every school provides a curriculum based on the California Common Core Standards, attention to social and emotional learning, arts and other enrichment programs, after school programs, and a diverse population that PEN believes leads to a rich learning environment for all students.
The District’s Parent/Student Handbook (updated August 2016) provides a directory of PUSD schools and an overview of programs and services. Because homework impacts families, PEN facilitated a process to revise PUSD’s Homework Policy. See also PEN’s Who to Contact page. Some highlights about PUSD schools include:
Awards & recognition include a National Blue Ribbon School, California Distinguished schools, Title 1 Achieving schools, and more*
All four Pasadena Unified high schools (Blair, Muir, Marshall, and PHS) made the Washington Post’s “America’s Most Challenging High Schools” list for 2017
Transitional Kindergarten (TK) at eight locations
Spanish Dual Language Immersion Programs at San Rafael, Jackson & Jefferson Elementary schools, and Blair IB Secondary (6-12) and Washington STEAM Multilingual Academy (6-8)
French Dual Language Immersion Program at Altadena Arts Elementary
Mandarin Dual Language Immersion Program at Field Elementary, Sierra Madre Middle, and Pasadena High School
STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) and STEAM (add Art) magnet schools at Washington Elementary and Middle
Altadena Arts Magnet elementary school and Eliot Arts Magnet middle school nurture academic development through the integration of music, dance, theater and visual arts across the curriculum
Advanced Scholars program at Wilson Middle
Math Academy, a highly accelerated math program that starts in 6th grade at McKinley, Sierra Madre, & Washington STEAM middle schools. Students complete BC Calculus by the end of 8th grade and learn college-level pure & applied mathematics in high school.
High School College & Career Academies
Early College Program where students engage in a rigorous, four-year program, earning up to two years of transferable college credit while in high school
Dual Enrollment allows students to earn college credit for specified high school courses
Recognized leader in the transition to Common Core Standards/21st Century Learning
Middle School Robotics program
Naviance (college planning and application software) available to all secondary students
*U.S. News & World Report has repeatedly awarded silver medals to Blair and Marshall Secondary Schools (both 6-12) and Pasadena High School, ranking them among the country’s top high schools; Newsweek named it a top national public high school and ranked it above La Cañada, San Marino and South Pasadena high schools.
Go Public, a documentary film project produced in 2012, captured some of the people who participate in our schools.
Bess, 5th grade, Webster Elementary
Abby, 2nd grade, San Rafael Elementary (Spanish Dual Language Immersion)
David, 2nd grade, McKinley K-8
Joanna, 3rd grade, Field Elementary (Mandarin Dual Language Immersion)
Esmeralda, parent volunteer, Madison Elementary
Pasadena Unified School District website