Monterey Bay Charter School is a tuition-free public school using Waldorf-inspired method of instruction.

There are three Kindergarten classes and grades 1-8 are in the process of growing to two classes per grade. There are two 1st-6th grades in 2017-18 and by 2019-20 it will be 508.

As a County-wide charter school, students come from all communities - Seaside, Monterey, Marina, Pacific Grove, Carmel, Big Sur, and Salinas.


School Office and Grades 1-8
1004 David Avenue, Pacific Grove

Kindergarten: Seaside Children's Center, 1450 Elm Street, Seaside (school office is not at this location)

Office Hours (Pacific Grove campus only)
Monday through Friday: 8:00 - 4:00
MBCS is working to obtain a school site centrally located for the families of our school and a facility large enough for all grades to be together and room to grow. The School Board passed a Resolution for School Facilities that articulates the school's vision. The MBCS Foundation is working to bring this dream to a reality.

School Hours

Pacific Grove Campus

Grades 1-2:  8:15-2:35
Grades 3-8:  8:15-3:15e
Thursdays:  8:15-1:00

Seaside Campus

Kindergarten:  9:00-1:00
Thursdays:  9:00-12:00

Budget - Average Daily Attendance

The state of California funds schools/districts such as MBCS based on student attendance, also known as Average Daily Attendance (ADA). ADA is calculated by dividing the total number of days of student attendance by the number of days of school taught during the same period.

A student with perfect attendance generates about $6,500 in State ADA revenue for the school. When attendance drops for any reason, revenue dips accordingly.

Charter and Accreditation

MBCS is an independent charter school approved by the Monterey County Board of Education (MCOE). California charter schools may be chartered for periods up to five years. MBCS received its first charter in 2005.

In 2011, the school was awarded a six-year year accreditation jointly from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the California Department of Education (CDE). 

MBCS Accreditation Report to WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges)

MBCS Charter Renewal was approved February 15, 2012 by the Monterey County Board of Education for five years (2012-2017).

State Testing

As a public school funded by the State, MBCS is subject to State requirements regarding testing in addition to other mandates. Students in grades 3-8 participate in Common Core testing and periodic benchmark testing is done to track each student’s progress.  Academic Performance Index* (API) score for 2012-13 was 862. Common Core resut

*State standardized tests in English, math, science and history determine a school's API score.

In 2013-14, California changed to "Smarter Balanced Assessments" and MBCS participated in the State's Field Test, which used computers for the first time to test 3rd-8th grade students. This field test will not provide scores or other outcomes to the participating schools. Smarter Balanced is an assessment system aligned with a common core of academic content standards for English language arts/literacy and mathematics.

School Funding, Tax Return, and Audit

MBCS is primarily funded by the State of California based on the Average Daily Attendance (ADA). Charter schools receive the least amount of ADA funding from the State of all public schools. The school relies on parent fundraising to close the gap between State funding and the full cost of the program.

The 2014-15 I-990 tax return (46 pages) is HERE and the school's 2014-15 audit.

Class Size

Each year the school grows as the grades with two classes move up and we start two 1st grades each year. By 2019-2020 the school will have two classes in grades 1 through 8. An additional Kindergarten class or Pre-K may be added once the school has moved to its new location.

Kindergarten: 22 students per class (three classes)

1st-4th Grades: 24 students per class 

5th-8th Grades: 26 students per class 

The smaller class sizes coupled with often (but not always!) keeping the same class teacher with the class from year to year, enables a strong understanding of the students and their progress. 

Specialty Classes

MBCS provides classes in several specialties that reflect the Waldorf-methods curriculum. Music, Handwork, Spanish, Games (P.E.), Strings, Theater, and Choral Singing are taught by teachers with specialized training in these subject areas. Middle School Electives are available to sixth to eighth graders (Band, Orchestra, Fine Arts, and Woodworking). See the Program description for more details on classroom subjects.

What is a California Charter?

Charter Schools were established as part of California State Education Code 47600.This part is known as the "Charter Schools Act of 1992." Section 47601 states:

"It is the intent of the Legislature, in enacting this part, to provide opportunities for teachers, parents, pupils, and community members to establish and maintain schools that operate independently from the existing school district structure, as a method to accomplish all of the following:

  • Improve pupil learning.
  • Increase learning opportunities for all pupils, with special
    emphasis on expanded learning experiences for pupils who are identified as academically low achieving.
  • Encourage the use of different and innovative teaching methods.
  • Create new professional opportunities for teachers, including the opportunity to be responsible for the learning program at the schoolsite.
  • Provide parents and pupils with expanded choices in the types of educational opportunities that are available within the public school system.
  • Hold the schools established under this part accountable for meeting measurable pupil outcomes, and provide the schools with a method to change from rule-based to performance-based accountability systems.
  • Provide vigorous competition within the public school system
    to stimulate continual improvements in all public schools."