St. Vincent de Paul High School has been fortunate to welcome and share culture with students from countries around the globe. The international student program began over six years ago, but St. Vincent de Paul has been educating youth in Sonoma County, CA for over one-hundred years.
SVHS is a small school with fewer than 240 students, which provides a safe and nurturing atmosphere that allows international students to flourish. We cultivate a strong relationship between our students, faculty, and staff—giving our students the tools they need to succeed in a new school in a new country.
We also develop their academic and spiritual growth. Moreover, we strive to foster a social environment in which students can thrive. In a recent WASC accreditation report, SVHS was described as the “Friendliest School in America.” The SVHS International Student Program also offers support services for our foreign students through our International Student Coordinator.
The school is located in the safe, quiet, comfortable, suburban community of Petaluma, California. The location offers our students the opportunity to experience life in beautiful Sonoma County, and they are only 40 miles (64km) from San Francisco, California.
College Preparatory Environment
St. Vincent de Paul High School is a rigorous four-year college preparatory school. We provide a mixture of advanced placement and honors courses to ensure that every student is challenged in their areas of strength. The curriculum emphasizes excellence in the sciences, mathematics, language arts, social sciences, world languages, theology, computer technology, and the arts.
SVHS graduates are expected to demonstrate mastery of many skills and disciplines.
English as a Second Language Classes
Students are provided with a transitional language program. On average, students spend two to three years in the ESL program, progressing through beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels practicing writing and speaking in English.
The ESL program has courses in English language development and academic preparation as well as mainstream English courses, which have been modified to meet the needs of the ESL students. Outside tutoring is sometimes needed and can also be arranged for students needing additional assistance.
Our host families are responsible for providing safe and welcoming homes for our international students. All host families receive a monthly stipend to help them provide a nurturing home environment for the student. Prospective host families undergo a rigorous application process and preparation meetings to help them welcome their new family member.
SVHS partners with The Cambridge Network to provide great home environments for all our students.
Cambridge Network Homestay Program Info >
Are you interested in being a Host Family?
Host Family Program Info >
9th grade – TOEFL Jr. score of 725+ or TOEFL score of 50+
10th grade – TOEFL Jr. score of 750+ or TOEFL score of 60+
11th grade – TOEFL score of 75+
SLEP test scores will be considered in conjunction with other admitting materials. Students may be asked to provide additional verification of English proficiency.