Mission Statement

Carpinteria Family School is a cooperative community of students, educators and parents dedicated to a safe, nurturing and creative learning environment. Our multi-age classrooms cultivate intrinsically motivated individuals who are contributing, compassionate members of our local and global communities. Parent participation is the heart of our school and crucial in encouraging our children to reach their own unique potential. Carpinteria Family School honors diversity and inspires the “Whole-Child” through social, emotional and challenging academic experiences, laying a foundation for developing creative, critical thinkers and life-long learners.





Core Philosophies

    Academics – Students become proficient learners through emphasis on state standards, cooperative and project based learning, and a supportive environment that embraces all the core philosophies.
   Multi-age classroom – Carpinteria Family School embraces the multi-age classroom by choice and design not necessity. Children are perceived less in terms of their grade and more in terms of their unique qualities and capabilities. The combined classrooms create strong relationships throughout our cooperative community, while also nurturing individuality and diversity. Evolving curriculum and instruction promotes academic excellence for all the students from our kindergartners to our fifth graders.
    Compassion – Compassion is the emotion that we feel as empathy for others that motivates a desire to help. Compassion is woven throughout all of the philosophies and principles of Carpinteria Family School. The school embraces the practice of Nonviolent Communication (NVC.) Nonviolent Communication is also known as “Compassionate Communication.” It is used throughout our school community by parents, staff, and students. Each of our teachers has their own unique, age appropriate way of promoting NVC in their classroom. Parents and educators also participate in on-going trainings to learn the language of “Compassionate Communication.”
    Parent Participation – This is an integral part of our multi-age classroom and family-style community. In striving for 100% parent participation, parents are encouraged to volunteer, bringing their own unique talents and ideas into our school. Tribes (our take on committees) are organized to create many diverse opportunities for families to contribute at their own capacity.


    Community – Carpinteria Family School has a strong partnership with our local community that facilitates student, educator and parent engagement in community service as well as welcoming the community into our school. Opportunities to participate are organized throughout the year. The whole school gathers together once a week for “Family Friday.” This is an example of working collaboratively to connect as a family, school unit. Service-learning opportunities such as Coastal Cleanup Day help our students practice
compassion while giving back to our local community.
    Environmental Sustainability and Stewardship through Education, Awareness, and Practice – Our students and their families learn the importance of protecting our environment. Some activities we emphasize include composting, recycling, experiencing science camp, and working in our organic garden. Our school song, “Sustainability,” highlights our stewardship!
    Tribes – Carpinteria Family School and its parent group (CFS Family) go beyond the known roll of committees by adopting the “tribe” philosophy. Family is emphasized here through cooperation and connection. Tribes work on team building and planning for the success and sustainability of the school community.
    Whole Child – All children are individuals who have different social, emotional and academic needs. By embracing individuality and creating a safe, loving environment where everyone is respected and heard, children can flourish academically. Teachers are empowered to diversify their lessons in order to meet all of their students’ unique styles of learning. Teachers, through authentic assessment, use project-based learning, music, art and creative expression to promote critical thinking.