The Secret Sauce to Your First Year in High School

3 SET High students standing together in front of the school and smiling.

The Secret Sauce to Your First Year in High School

You’re looking for a place to eat lunch but you open a door and…it’s the maker’s space?!?! Is this a school nightmare or 9th grade anxiety? Fear not! At the School for Entrepreneurship and Technology (SET High), a tuition-free 9th-12th grade high school in San Diego, we make sure you know what to expect when you arrive at SET High on your first day of school…especially where you eat lunch.

Are You Ready for High School

Our small, public high school is all about igniting a love of learning. It’s hard to learn though when you’re fretting about every new thing and when you’re a freshman that includes, oh, everything. Don’t worry, at SET High, we’ve got you covered with:

Shadow Days: Before you even enroll, you are invited to spend a day shadowing a SET High student around our campus. Get in the know before you even start school…especially when it comes to our amazing electives.

-New Student Orientation: We host an orientation so students can meet one another before school starts and start to build relationships and community. Contact information is exchanged and current SET students are on hand to talk about their experiences and answer questions.

-Overnight 9th Grade Retreat: Not only is the school new, you may not know anyone. This retreat will change that. During the first week of school, our 9th grade students take over the school for a night, talking, laughing and bonding together as they begin to experience what it means to be part of our close-knit, supportive community. 

-Engaging Staff & Teachers: we have strong relationships with each of our students because we truly care about you and your future. Sure, high school is about learning in class, but just as importantly it’s about learning how to take care of yourself…with helpful guidance and support. 

Advisor: Speaking of guidance, to support our students, SET uses an advisory program or “ROAR” – Responsibility, Organization, Accountability, and Resilience. Each student is assigned an advisory teacher that they work with through the entirety of their time at SET. Every advisory teacher advocates, promotes, assists and reinforces a student’s personalized path through high school. We assist parents and students in crafting an educational program tailored to accomplish academic career goals. We help you design your own learning journey which has so many great options at SET High! 

Block scheduling: Instead of rushing around every 50 minutes from new class to new class and unfamiliar methods, our public school concentrates on five classes a term so you can really focus on a subject. Take a breath and get ready to be creatively engaged!

Setting High School Up for Success

How does our California Distinguished School set students up for success? Oh let us count (some of) the ways: 

-Creating a positive school culture– no cliques at our small school. Instead we build community!

-Future ready thinking with our H-P Concepts and Philosophy and our very own SETUP vision.

– Planning and advice for after graduation as early as freshman year as part of our Ready, SET, College. We also incorporate California’s UC A-G requirements so there’s no guesswork on what you need to go to college.

Leadership SET Style. Get introduced to passion projects in this leadership class just for 9th graders because we want you to love learning!

-Incentivizing Attendance: Going to school matters. Duh. SET High knows it’s important to have you in the classroom because that’s where the learning happens so they make it fun and interesting. Plus, it actually gives the school money that we use to pay for even more fun like ping pong cash prizes, bouncy houses and lunch room additions that make everything better! 

Join the Club

Enjoying school and igniting a passion for learning is what we’re all about at SET High but that doesn’t mean just class and a passion project. We also have fun clubs led by students and teachers alike:


Mountain Biking

College Prep (including test preparation)

D & D



Magic The Gathering

Film Production 

Bible Study

National Association of Mental Illness (NAMI)

Ping Pong 

SET Senate

And if you want to create one that we don’t offer? Great! We want our clubs to reflect our students’ interests so go ahead, put your passion into practice through forming a club!

Don’t forget sports. Because we’re a small school you have the opportunity to get more playing time in or even try something you’re curious about but may have been intimidated by in a larger school. 

Already a seasoned sports veteran? Great! Because we’re a small school, you get a very personalized education so you can excel at academics and your athletics!

Ready to love learning in high school? Our WASC-accredited school is enrolling now.

About SET High 

SET High offers each student individual attention from multi-talented, highly qualified  teachers. Students build a healthy camaraderie with classmates inside an intellectually rigorous environment that brings out their talents and personality, helping them develop their individual character and direction in life. With a wide variety of electives, flexible scheduling, dual enrollment college classes and more — our students regularly exceed their academic and personal expectations. Enroll now