Eight school districts provide primary and secondary education to the majority of Thurston County's students. These districts range in size from rural Griffin, with a total of 661 students, to the more urban North Thurston Public Schools, which had 15,048 students during the 2015-2016 school year.
The majority of students are educated in the three school districts that serve the metropolitan area in the north portion of Thurston County. During the 2015-2016 school year, North Thurston Public Schools served 36% of the public school students in the county; Olympia served 24%; and Tumwater served 15% of the students. Yelm was the next largest school district, serving 14% of the Thurston County's public school students.
The fastest growing school districts between 1990 and 2015 were Yelm and Rochester. Tenino School District was the only district in Thurston County with declining enrollment during the same period of time.