This entry refers to a departed business — a business that has closed or left town. Information here is mostly for historical reference.

You can see the California Historical Landmark plaque to the right behind the fire hydrant.

Former Location
840 North Branciforte Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA 95062-1028
Santa Cruz City Schools District.

The official name was originally Branciforte School. It later became Branciforte Elementary School to distinguish it from the Branciforte Middle School (grades 7-8*). The official USGS maps, and county records, never called it a "Grammar" school.  The main entrance of the school has "BRANCIFORTE GRAMMAR SCHOOL" engraved in stone. A mistake that was too costly to fix. This has caused many to call it a grammar school.  Branciforte Elementary School was a Kindergarten through 6th grade elementary school.   It is currently the location of Branciforte Small School Campus.

*In 2004 Branciforte Middle School added grade 6.


The current school building, designed by William Weeks, opened in 1914 as Branciforte School and replaced the original Branciforte School that had been located at 555 Soquel Avenue.  The building has been refurbished several times. In the 1950's it was brought up to earthquake code.

In June 2004, Branciforte Elementary School closed.

The campus became the Branciforte Small School Campus (BSSC). As part of the Small Schools reorganization, Alternative Family Education (AFE), Ark Independent Studies, Costanoa High School (created from the merger of Loma Prieta High School and the Ark daily program), and Monarch Community School Were located to this campus. Additionally, a Head Start program is located at this campus.

Branciforte Small School Campus is the location of California Historic Landmark 469. It was the site of the town of Braciforte, the original settlement in the county. (Originally, it was Branciforte County and became Santa Cruz County in 1851.)

In 1950, the State of California put a plaque in front of the school to commemorate the site as part of the settlement of Villa de Braceforte. It is California Historical Landmark #469.

In 2012 The Museum of Art and History added the location to the list of Santa Cruz County Historical Trust Landmarks.


Branciforte Elementary School was on the USGS map :

  Latitude(DMS) Longitude(DMS) Map Name
  365852N 1220049W Santa Cruz

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