Welcome from the Principal

Principal Laura Shain

Welcome to a new year at Ocean Shore School. Ocean Shore is a dynamic school where students and parents are active participants in our enriching and experiential learning environment. This is my first year as principal at Ocean Shore School and my second year as a parent at OSS. I am enjoying the process of getting to know each student, each family and all the unique pieces that tie us all together. As a new principal I am familiarizing myself with the day to day field-trips and other educational opportunities which are given to the children here at Ocean Shore on a regular basis. In addition, I am spending time reviewing our curricular pathways with eyes toward the future needs for our children.

Ocean Shore is an ever-changing program. As an alternative school Ocean Shore has the natural ability to adapt and reflect the needs of our students and our families. The parents that choose Ocean Shore are parents who believe in a public school where a partnership between staff and parents exists at all levels. Parents are invited into the classrooms and encouraged to participate in their children's education. The model lends itself to a sustainable educational institution despite the continual budget cuts in the schools. For these reasons and many others Ocean Shore is an exceptional and unique public school. The Ocean Shore community believes in educating the whole child while providing core academic standards, educating students through appropriate pacing and building a foundation of experiential learning opportunities through home, school and after school enrichment programs. To achieve these goals, parents, staff, PTO and administration are willing to work closely with the school and district to move through hurdles that prevent this from happening in other places. Our parents tend to have backgrounds either through their education or the workplace where they bring forward skills, knowledge, and experience that can be shared with students or can be shared to make Ocean Shore the full, rich program that it is today.

Our school works to build a sense of community and over the years has developed a plan that references the need for all of us to work together. We encourage students across grade levels to meet each other and to work together. We teach older students to model good behavior to younger students. And we try as much as we can to have a small school feeling, despite having grown in size.

Ocean Shore School embraces active learning, encourages critical thinking and intellectual curiosity while inspiring joyful creativity. Attitudes and actions that value individuals and groups equally in our diverse world are modeled and taught.

Join us in this endeavor to educate our students. On behalf of our staff, students, and school families, we look forward to working together in the future.

Karen Gnusti

Program Description

Ocean Shore School is a single kindergarten through eighth grade school in the Pacifica School District. As a public school, Ocean Shore School has access to the entire range of student services available to all schools in the district, including gifted and talented education (GATE) programs when available, Special Education Services, and Outdoor Education experiences. Ocean Shore School follows state and district-mandated standards-based curriculum, which is supplemented and enhanced by utilizing the skills and talents of the parent body to assist in providing a larger variety of learning experiences in small group settings.

Ocean Shore School is founded on a holistic approach to education, providing challenging academics, nurturing the joy of discovery in learning, and fostering the social and emotional growth of all students. There are no admission requirements for students; however parents and guardians must commit to active participation in the school with hours and special project requirements. If there are no student vacancies, waiting lists are established and maintained according to district policy.

Mission and Vision

Ocean Shore School provides a nurturing environment for project-based learning through a combination of whole class, small group, and individualized instruction. Thematic projects involve mixed-age groupings and inclusion of diverse learners. Students are actively engaged as creative problem-solvers and critical thinkers.

Parents, staff, and community members collaborate within a shared leadership model to develop educational programs and provide instruction. Parents assist throughout the school and coordinate special projects including the library, computer lab, after school enrichment activities, and theme days.

A strong community is developed at Ocean Shore School for students, families, and staff. Our students have leadership opportunities and practice peer mediation techniques for conflict resolution. We are committed to creating a positive climate for our diverse community.


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PrincipalKaren Gnustikgnusti@pacificasd.org
PTO PresidentDustin McGahanfourscore@sbcglobal.net
Upper Grade PTO VPKatherine Watsonkpmft@yahoo.com
Lower Grade PTO VPJane Mylesstashjem@mac.com
PTO TreasurerDebbie Kimballkimballs4@yahoo.com
PTO SecretaryJanice Milleroceanloverz@comcast.net
Parent Rep (K-2)Jody Websterjody@holmanphotography.com
Parent Rep (K-2)Julie DeardorffJulie.deardorff@gmail.com
Parent Rep (3-5)Randi Deckerrandidecker@gmail.com
Parent Rep (3-5)Andy Lieaggie@pacbell.net
Parent Rep (6-8)Jennifer Mitchellmitchguez@gmail.com
Parent Rep (6-8)Christina RimmerChristina_rimmer@yahoo.com

Teaching Staff

KindergartenLisa DeVryldevry@pacificasd.org
KindergartenJennifer Mitchelljmitchell@pacificasd.org
1st GradeHelen Kokashkokas@pacificasd.org
1st GradeJuli Changjchang@pacificasd.org
2nd GradeFran Quartinifquartini@pacificasd.org
2nd GradeAlice Garibaldiagaribaldi@pacificasd.org
3rd GradeConnie Tsectse@pacificasd.org
3rd GradeSheila Gamble-Dornsgambled@pacificasd.org
4th/5th GradePatty McNallypmcnally@pacificasd.org
4th/5th Grade GradeJonathan Harrisjharris@pacificasd.org
4th/5th Grade GradeVirginia Szczepaniakvszczepaniak@pacificasd.org
6th GradeKaty Stearnskstearns@pacificasd.org
6th/7th GradeDiane Barghouthydbarghouthy@pacificasd.org
7th GradeJan Keaneyjkeaney@pacificasd.org
8th GradeSeva Steelessteele@pacificasd.org
Special EducationJon Moyerjmoyer@pacificasd.org
Special EducationMatt Haydenmhayden@pacificasd.org

Strategic Plan

OSS Strategic Plan

Contact Us and Directions

Your questions are welcome. Please contact the PTO President at fourscore@sbcglobal.net or the school office at 650-738-6600.

Thank you for considering our exciting program!

Ocean Shore School

411 Oceana Blvd.
Pacifica, California 94044
650-355-0660 (fax)

From the North

Take I-280 S toward Daly City
Slight right at CA-1 S (signs for Pacifica)
Take exit 507 for Palmetto Avenue toward Manor Drive
Turn left at Manor Drive and proceed across the overpass
Take the first left onto Oceana Boulevard
Ocean Shore School is on the right.

From the South

Take I-280 N toward San Francisco
Take exit 47/Cabrillo Highway/CA-1 S to Pacifica
Take exit 507 for Palmetto Avenue toward Manor Drive
Turn left at Manor Drive and proceed across the overpass
Take the first left onto Oceana Boulevard
Ocean Shore School is on the right