Monarch School

Monarch School is dedicated to helping homeless students break the cycle of poverty through education. Monarch is a year-round K-12 public school designed to remove barriers encountered by homeless students and provide programming to address their unique needs.

Location: San Diego , CA
Year founded: 1988


The mission of the Monarch School is to educate students impacted by homelessness and to help them develop hope for a future with the necessary skills and experiences for personal success.

Monarch has served San Diego County for more than 25 years, beginning as a one-room education center in 1988 and evolving into a K-12 school offering a comprehensive program designed to help chronically homeless children overcome poverty.

Monarch serves 300 children daily, and up to 400 each year. Monarch School is a public-private partnership between the San Diego County Office of Education and the Monarch School Project.

Our annual fundraising supports the programs and services we provide our students year round, which cost approximately $2 million. These programs include:

  • Emotional Growth:  basic needs, mental and physical health, family assistance
  • Social Growth:  athletics, creative arts, field trips, student events
  • Life Skills:  college and career development, alumni support
  • Academic:  literacy specialist, math specialist, tutoring

Monarch offers an accredited education, tutoring, after school program, athletics, creative arts, and college and career preparation as well as basic necessities such as food and clothing, medical care, dental and vision services, mental health care, transportation and family assistance.

Currently there are more than 22,000 homeless children in San Diego County. Monarch School’s role in the community is to serve students impacted by the most severe cases of chronic homelessness and address the related academic disruption they have experienced.

Monarch students live in family shelters, shelters for victims of domestic violence, teen shelters, motels, in vehicles with their families, or doubled-up with other families. They’ve often been absent from school for long periods of time and are achieving below grade level when they enroll.

Monarch removes barriers typically encountered by homeless students and provides programs and services not offered at traditional schools. Our year-round program is designed to help students achieve and surpass grade level proficiencies in a welcoming, supportive and academically rigorous environment.


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