Thank you for your interest in applying to Holden High School. Holden is a private, non-profit, WASC-accredited high school that has been addressing the academic and social emotional needs of teenagers since 1969.

Our student body comprises up to forty students in grades 9 – 12 with a student-teacher ratio of 5:1 or better.

Holden apply


Apply Online

Use the link provided above to apply online or Download and complete the 2019-20 application manually.





  • Schedule student for a visit day. Student interviews will be held during the visit day. (Students may visit before submitting an application.)
  • Submit current IEP, 504 plan, and/or learning assessment (if applicable).
  • Fill out and submit a medical release form (if applicable).
  • Have a current or recent teacher complete and send us a recommendation. Download our Teacher Recommendation Form. This form should be emailed directly to to or mailed directly to Holden High School Admissions, 10 Irwin Way, Orinda, CA 94563.
  • Submit a writing sample from current school year (essay, research paper, or creative writing piece). On the writing sample, please include the nature of the assignment. (If applying for the Elective Class Option Program, no writing sample is needed.)
  • Enclose application fee of $85.
  • Optional: schedule student for a visit week. The non-refundable fee for a visit week is $275.

Note: Sometimes the admissions committee requests additional interviews or forms to be completed.

Dates & Deadlines

The first round of admissions decisions were sent out on March 21, 2019. All incoming applications are processed on a first come, first serve basis.

Non-Discrimination Policy

We do not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual preference, wardrobe, or disability.

“Holden has given me the opportunity, and motivated me, to do new things: an on-line class, attend Berkeley City College, and do an internship in Nicaragua editing videos.”

– Benjamin Bank, Holden alumni