Almaden Country Day School

  • The Mission of Almaden Country Day School is to discover the gifts in every child.
  • We provide a balanced, safe, and affirming environment for learning --empowering children to strive, explore, and build a sense of personal value.
  • Our teachers create a rich academic foundation that corresponds with the developmental stages of childhood.
  • We offer a wide variety of opportunities for children to extend their intellectual, social, and personal potential.
  • Our students become delightful people--confident, kind, concerned, and ready to make significant contributions to our world.

Top Placements

Almaden Country Day School places among the top 20% of private schools in California for:

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)
California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS)
Religious AffiliationNonsectarian
Grades OfferedGrades Prekindergarten-8
Learning Difference ProgramsYes
Learning Programs SupportedDyslexia / Language-based or Mild Learning Differences, Discalcula, Disgraphia
Year Founded1982

Student Body

Total Students314 students
Student Body TypeCo-ed
% Students of Color
State avg.: 45%
Students by Grade Almaden Country Day School Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers44 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio7:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size20 students
List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses
Classroom Dress CodeCasual
(uniform-navy pants/skirt and polo shirt)

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineNone / Rolling
Yearly Tuition Cost$29,070
Tuition NotesTuition ranges from $20,310 for 5 day preschool to $30,250 for middle school (includes books, 1:1 laptops and iPads)
% on Financial Aid
Admissions DirectorMary Jo Heindel
Admissions AssociateAmber White


Total Sports Offered6 sports
SportsBasketball, Flag Football, Football, Track and Field, Ultimate Frisbee, VolleyballBasketballFlag Football,
FootballTrack and Field,
Ultimate FrisbeeVolleyball,


Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.17 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.Club or Organization:
Chess Club, Community Service, Dungeons and Dragons Club, First Lego League Robotics, Girls on the Run, Girls Who Code, Makers Club, Math Club, Robotics Club

Arts and Music Programs:
ACDS Choirs, Band Program, Clay Club, Drama Club, Pep Band, Sewing Club

Recreational Athletic Programs:
Sports Clinics, Team Sports

School Notes

  • Award-winning and established for over 35 years
  • Small class sizes 
  • Over 95% of graduates attend high schools of their choice including private high schools
  • Character Education program
  • 21st Century Skills
  • Social-Emotional Learning 
  • Extended care programs available (including complimentary morning care)
  • Athletics Program
  • Foreign Languages
  • Arts offered such as drama, studio, music, and more
  • Clubs

Profile last updated:

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  • School Location Miles Grades Students
  • San Jose
    Grades: NS-5 | 2048 students
    8.3 miles
    4300 Bucknall Road
    San Jose, CA 95130
    (408) 871-4600
    8.3 NS-5
  • San Jose
    Grades: K-8 | 105 students
    3.3 miles
    5200 Dent Avenue
    San Jose, CA 95118
    (408) 265-3392
    3.3 K-8
  • San Jose
    Grades: 5-12 | 110 students
    3.5 miles
    4340 Almaden Expressway
    San Jose, CA 95118
    (408) 833-7050
    3.5 5-12
  • San Jose
    Grades: NS-4
    3.9 miles
    4949 Harwood Road
    San Jose, CA 95124
    (408) 723-0111
    3.9 NS-4
  • San Jose
    Grades: NS-12 | 2048 students
    9.7 miles
    500 Saratoga Ave
    San Jose, CA 95129
    (408) 249-2510
    9.7 NS-12

School Reviews

  5.00 out of 5  (16 reviews)
We love Almaden Country Day School. Our oldest daughter graduated from ACDS last year and was completely prepared for high school. At ACDS, her love of learning was nurtured, she was offered many wonderful enrichment classes and she was taught how to speak confidently. Our youngest daughter is in 5th grade and is inspired by amazing teachers, offered opportunities to try new things in a safe environment and supported by a wonderful community. Great school!
- Posted by
After being increasingly unhappy with our previous school, (a private, for-profit school with a very traditional curriculum that emphasized whole-group, rote learning and automatically accelerated students by one grade level) we decided we needed to make a quick change. We asked every parent who would talk to us, where their kids go to school and what they like/dislike about it. It was by doing this that we learned about Almaden Country School. It was eye opening that every person we spoke to had only positive things to say! We needed to learn more about this school.I sent an email to Mary Jo to see if there was room in the grades my kids were in, and she replied within hours, offering to take me on a tour that same week. My husband and I went with a long list of questions, wanting to see what this school had to offer, and hoping it might be a good fit for our kids. We were so pleasantly surprised at what this hidden gem had to offer. We observed the actual classes that had openings for our kids, so we knew we were looking at the teacher and classmates our kids would have if we moved them there. It was such a stark contrast to our previous school, where the kids sat in desks all day long, listening to the teacher divulge information, taking notes so that they could spit it back out for a test. At Almaden Country School, the classrooms buzz with the collaboration of students and teachers. They are working in groups, having discussions, creating projects, and moving their bodies. At Country School, the kids move to different classrooms for Science, Art, Music, Drama, PE, Library and French. They have a different teacher for each of these classes, so they have opportunities to form relationships with many teachers, and experience the varying styles of teaching as well. Our kids enjoy school now. They`re experiencing a new way of learning, and realizing how fun it can be to learn new things. As parents, this is exactly what we were wanting for them - to develop a lifelong love of learning. As an added bonus, we`ve been warmly welcomed into the wonderful parent community at ACS. What a wonderful, family-oriented happy place to learn!
- Posted by
I have two children at Almaden Country School, a son in 7th, and a daughter in 5th grade. We are in our 7th year with ACS, and are still so pleased with our decision to move from public to private. Not only is it the smaller classrooms and specialized teachers who make a difference, but also it's the lessons themselves. Prior to ACS, my son was mostly doing common core dittos and worksheets in class with little hands-on or individualized learning. Now there are many experiments, and group and project-based learning that involve real life examples and varying opinions. With the fantastic addition of the new athletic director, Coach Mac has reinvigorated the flag football, basketball, volleyball and track programs over the last few years.To its credit, ACS strives to preserve childhood. I used to worry that by not having gone to a larger public school, my children would be too sheltered when high school came along. However, I am grateful the ACS program allows kids to focus on joyful learning, self-confidence and developing 21st century skills in a safe environment. They are able to make smart and sound decisions for themselves and they have formed bonds and close relationships with friends for life. Plus, I can clearly see how graduates are well prepared for high school and beyond!I also can't say enough for the excellent Drama program at ACS. Starting in 1st grade, through 5th, Drama is a requirement that the children all LOVE (still offered as an elective through Middle School). Mr. Leonard and Miss Leary put on 7 or 8 amazing productions throughout the year - I highly recommend seeing one of the plays if you are thinking about joining the ACS community. It's absolutely incredible to see ALL of the children up on stage and not shy or nervous at all about speaking in front of a crowd. This is what sold us on ACS - public speaking is such a hard thing to overcome and when you start early, it's easy and enables children to become great speakers to each other and adults throughout their lives.
- Posted by
Almaden Country School did an amazing job preparing our daughter for high school. ACS taught her to become an independent young individual. She easily transitioned to Notre Dame High School this year. She had all the necessary skills to be academically successful and also thrive socially. So, of course, we knew our youngest should start kindergarten next year at ACS. Another nine years for us at ACS! We are excited.
- Posted by
We''ve now had children in all 3 of the Early Childhood classes- Begindergarten, JrK, and Kindergarten- and I cannot imagine a better start to their schooling. We''ve had outstanding teachers at all levels, who have prepared my kids both academically, socially, and emotionally. My son entered ACS as a shy student who didn't particularly like going to school, and he is finishing Kindergarten with confidence and a tremendous love for school. The ACS community feels like an extension of family, and we feel grateful to have found this gem of a school.
- Posted by
Of course we feel that Almaden Country School is an amazing school for our children. We have been at ACS for nine years now. The community is welcoming and provides a nurturing environment where the students and faculty thrive. But you can't help and wonder if it is it enough. Are our children learning the skills they need to get into a great high school of their choice? Once there, are they able to keep up with their peers? After recently attending open houses at St Francis HS and Presentation HS, the answers were apparent. Almaden Country School graduates have a presence. They are not only attending these top high schools; they are leaders there. It was reassuring to speak with the ACS alum at both schools. They continue to thrive with confidence and ease. It is not a coincidence that these great kids are doing so well, especially when they refer to their ACS experience as a contributing factor to their success. I could go on and on about the fabulous programs at ACS which have truly enriched our children, but there is great comfort knowing that ACS is preparing them for their long educational journey which lies ahead of them!
- Posted by
I am an alum of Almaden Country School and was one of the first students when the school first opened in the early 80's. I attended the school from Kindergarten through 5th grade and have such fond memories at the school like playing on the blacktop, walking in the annual Halloween parade, and performing with my classmates during the school plays. The smaller class sizes and curriculum coupled with exceptional teachers played a significant role in laying the foundation and building blocks for my educational and professional career. 20 years later and still living in the area it was now my turn to pick an elementary school for my son. Immediately Almaden Country School came to mind, but I felt I had to verify if the core values and overall "feeling" I had when I was a child were still in tact. After a very hospitable tour and evaluation of the school, I walked away with a renewed confidence that my son would be in good hands at ACS. It is hard to put into words, but when you are on the school grounds something just feels "right." Walking through the halls, joyful memories and experiences that were tucked away resurfaced and I felt the same special aura that I had felt years ago. It is pretty amazing that after so many years the traditions, values, and spirit of the school are still there. I now have two sons enrolled at Almaden Country School, and have witnessed them develop into well-rounded people both, academically and socially, as a result of the school's teachings and values. I highly recommend Almaden Country School to any family. The care, development, and individual attention your child will receive is paramount and unmatched in the area.
- Posted by
I have been part of the Almaden Country School community for over 2 years. I could not be more pleased with the teachers'' dedication (and preparation), the administration's responsiveness, the student-teacher ratio, and the school's overall philosophy. The parents are friendly, supportive, and caring. When I joined the school, I immediately felt like a welcome member of the community. I especially like the school-wide events; they are relevant, inclusive, and help bring the school together. When I am in the classrooms, I notice that the children are eager, articulate, and clearly enjoy learning. One of the aspects I appreciate most about the Almaden is that the administration is forward-thinking (Ole's written pieces in the local media are thought provoking) and child-centered. One can tell just by talking with them that they truly care about the students and their development. I am so happy that our family joined ACS. It is an amazing school.
- Posted by
Almaden Country School is an exceptional learning community which prepares students to be responsible & engaged citizens. The school fosters critical thinking, respect and mentoring as evident in a school-wide big buddy program where older students are paired with younger students. Though this might sound a bit "Montessori", it is the perfect example of a program which empowers and engages students of varying ages to break out of their comfort zone while instilling confidence at all levels. The ACS faculty and administration consider parents as partners in the development and character building so important in these early formative years. The teachers are passionate educators who truly love to teach. Though many of the teachers have decades of service, there is nice balance between established teachers and younger educators who really identify with the students; especially in Middle School. Opinions matter, whether you're a parent or a student. When my son wanted to start a club, he had the latitude to do so and the support of his teachers and peers. We're also continuously impressed with the relevant upgrades to the academic curriculum due in large part to the efforts of a progressive, nationally renowned Head of School, Ole Jorgenson. The experiential aspect of both core and elective classes, as well as field trips and weeklong Middle School trips, gave both our sons a platform to explore and learn outside the classroom. In the last few years, ACS Athletics has developed into an excellent program. It's a great pre-cursor to high school athletic competition.
- Posted by
We cannot find the words to express how extraordinary and special ACS is - children flourish in its kind, caring and respectful environment, and teachers and administrators spark their students' love of learning each and every day. Academically, students are well-prepared for high school, and from a development perspective the administration is passionate about ensuring that the talents and gifts of every student are discovered and nurtured. Students genuinely enjoy and care for each other and their teachers, and both parents and students love ACS.
- Posted by
The questions parents asks when deciding on a school for their children is whether that school will provide a nurturing environment, inspire a love of learning, encourage and enable each child to find what makes them exceptional and prepare them for future success. I am a parent of an Almaden Country School (ACS) alumnus that began at in the 4-year old program and attended through Middle School. My daughter was accepted into her first choice West Catholic high school, recently graduated with honors from a prestigious university, captained a Division I sports team and is now a supervisor in Europe for Tesla Motors. She is confident, self-aware, empathetic and hard working. I firmly believe ACS provided a critical foundation for her and many of her classmates who are on a similarly successful trajectory. Test scores are important and ACS students do extremely well on standardized tests. But as we know well, the workplace of the 21st century will be characterized by constant change. It is impossible to know what technical skills will be the most valuable. In preparing the children, ACS focuses on the key ingredients for a successful knowledge worker in an ever changing environment: teamwork, creativity, ethics, resilience, curiosity and time management. ACS is a unique school that places the child at the center of every important decision. The culture encourages family involvement in a strong, caring community of learners.
- Posted by
We are so happy we sent our children to Almaden Country School. Both of our children started their ACS years in preschool and graduated from eighth grade. ACS provided an educational experience that challenged and supported our two very different children, meeting their individual needs every step of the way. The curriculum is excellent and our children were well prepared for the private high schools they are now attending. The enrichment programs like drama and the middle school electives helped them develop their confidence, creativity and knowledge of the world. Our years at Almaden Country School were filled with learning and laughter. ACS has left an impression on both the mind and the heart.
- Posted by
Almaden Country School is a magical safe place where kids get be kids. They become organized, thoughtful, and caring people ready to go out and make a difference in the world. My high school freshman was well prepared by ACS middle school and feels confident in himself both socially and academically. Taking on new challenges is easier with the foundation that he built at Almaden Country School under the guidance of the wonderful teachers and administration.
- Posted by
Our family has been at ACS for nearly 10 years. Before our children started, we visited the school and were so impressed by the confident students who looked you right in the eye and talked directly to you. Now we are watching our children develop into strong students who have an interest in art, music, drama, science, technology and so much more. ACS is an incredible community for our children and our family.
- Posted by
I recently had the opportunity to watch the ACS 7th graders interact at 5:15 a.m. at the San Jose Airport before heading out for their annual field trip. You could imagine the excitement. You also could imagine that with the excitement and very little sleep the night before, they may not have been fully cognitive at 5:15 in the morning. But what I witnessed was a group of excited but respectful children, interacting and following direction of the lead chaperone in a way that he never needed to raise a voice above conversation tone. The respect the chaperone delivered with his words and direction matched the actions of the children. The class has been taught "Definite Dozen" terms, which includes learning to be responsible, respecting differences and using character over reputation. It was obvious that these teachings had moved off the page and into action and you could see the sigh of relief from their parents watching with the comment "this is why we send our child to Almaden Country School." To add, I also witnessed the impact on other travelers at the San Jose Airport thinking to themselves, "I wonder what school that is?" It was a pleasure watching confident, respectful and happy young adults, which is exactly why our family chose ACS.
- Posted by
We have two daughters at Almaden Country School and we are constantly impressed by every aspect of the school. From the strong academics to the incredible enrichment programs, this school offers a warm, caring environment where kids get to be kids. The teachers are passionate, the parents involved and the kids thriving; what more could a parent want?
- Posted by

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The average private school tuition in San Jose, CA is $15,447 for elementary schools and $22,404 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in San Jose, CA is 84% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).