Venture School Home
Counseling Overview


Welcome to the college and counseling information home page. The links to the left contain helpful general information for Venture students and parent. Alissa Kruse, Venture’s Guidance Counselor, is available to assist with more specific concerns and questions. Please contact her at 925-479-1215 or at

When registering for SAT and ACT testing – or when completing the Common Application for College Admissions, Venture students will need the school’s CEEB code. Venture's CEEB Code is 053224

All Venture students have a Naviance/Family Connections account which should be activated during the first month of attendance at Venture. Students enrolling from another school in the San Ramon Valley Unified School District retain their Username and Password; however, they must log into the website through Venture. (A QuickLink may be found on the Venture home page.) Students new to the district may see the Venture counselor for registration.

The Venture School Profile below may help to answer some initial questions about our program. It is also useful for students applying to college through the Common Application process and may be found as a Quicklink on the Venture School homepage.




Founded in 1978 by the San Ramon Valley Unified School District as a public alternative school serving grades K-12, Venture School is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Our most recent full accreditation visit was in 2011; Venture received a six year term (through 2017) with a three year review. (This review took place in April, 2014: Venture’s accreditation status was reaffirmed through June, 2017.) At the end of the 2013-14 school year, Venture had 352 students enrolled. More than 90% were high school students, 123 of whom were in the graduating class.

Venture is located in the city of San Ramon, California, a suburban community located approximately 35 miles east of San Francisco.  Most of its residents are employed in professional and service jobs. The school reflects the ethnic makeup of the surrounding communities: 62% Caucasian, 6% African-American, 17% Hispanic, 10% Asian, 5% other.

Because of its long-standing reputation and unique program in the Bay Area, Venture attracts students from the district’s four comprehensive high schools and from schools throughout Contra Costa County and contiguous counties. Our current enrollment includes students from more than a dozen neighboring school districts.  The school year follows a traditional two-semester calendar beginning in August and ending in June.

The Venture faculty is comprised of 15 fully certificated teachers, of whom 11 are full time. In addition, Venture has a full time principal and a full time guidance counselor along with three support staff members.


Academic Program


Venture’s college prep curriculum meets UC and CSU requirements and mirrors the course of study offered at the district’s four outstanding comprehensive high schools. Many of our students concurrently enroll at their home high schools and community colleges to take advantage of courses not offered at Venture, including laboratory science, world language, advanced mathematics, and performing arts. Venture does not offer AP or Honors courses, but some of our students do take these courses at other district high schools.

Venture’s independent study program provides students with the opportunity to personalize their instruction and the freedom to pursue opportunities that enrich and expand their educational experience. Students work with a primary teacher who creates and oversees a program of study to match their skills, talents, and aspirations. In addition, they have the option of participating in one or more of our 17 weekly small group and lab enrichment classes. Through this process, Venture students master academic skills while developing the independence, the initiative, and the time management and organizational capabilities necessary for future success.

Students typically enroll in six classes per semester and must earn 240 credits to graduate (five credits per semester for courses complete with a grade of “D” or better). Credits must include: four years of English, two years of mathematics, one year of physical science, one year of life science, three and a half years of social science, two years of physical education, one semester of health, and two years of world language, visual & performing arts, and/or technology & applied arts.

Grade Point Averages are computed on a traditional 4.0 scale; however, a Venture transcript may reflect weighted grades for some college courses as well as AP and Honors classes taken at other schools. In alignment with district policy, class rank is not computed, either at Venture or the four traditional high schools.




In 1998, Venture was the first school in California to receive the Governor’s Quality Award, which was based upon the Federal Malcolm Baldridge Award recognizing organizations for achieving the highest level of excellence in their field. This honor was followed by the Prospector Award in 2002. Venture was also selected as an Independent Study Demonstration School by the National Alternative Education Association and as an “Outstanding Independent Study School” by the California Department of Education and California Consortium for Independent Study.

Since 2011, Venture graduates have included a gold medalist in the 51st International Mathematical Olympiad and the winner of the 2011 Intel Science Talent Search, as well as National Merit Scholarship finalist and semi-finalists. Because Venture provides education to student athletes who compete at the national level and to students employed as actors and models, other recent graduates are pursuing their professional careers in sports, in modeling and acting, and as dancers with the San Francisco and Joffrey Ballet companies.

Most members of the Venture Graduating Classes of 2011-2014  are currently attending college. These schools include: The Academy of Art – San Francisco; Arizona State University; Berklee College of Music; Brigham Young University; California College of the Arts; California Lutheran; California Maritime Academy; California State Universities – Chico, East Bay, Sonoma; Colorado State University; Evergreen College; Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising; Fordham; Georgia Institute of Technology; Harvard University; Juilliard School; London School of Fashion; Mills College; Oklahoma State University; Pacific Union College; Northern Arizona University; Prescott College; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Saint Marys College; Santa Clara University; Universities of California – Berkeley, Davis, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz; University of Colorado; University of Idaho; University of Nevada – Reno; University of Oregon; University of the Pacific; Warren Wilson College; Western Washington University; Westminster University. Other recent graduates are currently attending one of more than ten community colleges and several career/technical institutes.