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 647 students, to the more urban North Thurston Public Schools, which had 15,065 students during the 2016-2017 school year.
The majority of students attend school in the Lacey–Olympia–Tumwater area, accounting for approximately 73% of total public school enrollment. During the 2016-2017 school year, North Thurston Public Schools served 35% of the public school students in the county; Olympia served 24%; and Tumwater served 16% 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 1991 and 2017 were Yelm and Rochester. Tenino School District was the only district in Thurston County with an overall declining enrollment during the same period of time, likely due to a decrease in school-aged population.