Then you must read this scathing critique from the SF Weekly. Cooking school via the California Culinary Academy can lead to massive student loan debt that leaves many would-be cooks (they can't call themselves chefs just yet!) left scrambling to make ends meet. Many entry level cooking positions are minimum wage or only a few dollars more.
There are other problems with the CCA's pay-to-play strategy. When I was at the CCA (and paying 35K), students were allowed to stay at the school if they paid their tuition and/or had student loans. No matter if someone exhibited behavior that would easily get them booted from any job or other school: showing up drunk and/or seriously wasted on drugs, making menacing threats, using racist language, acting verbally and physically abusive, etc. One of my trustafarian classmates had a history of badgering and threatening women, and in one disturbing incident, used his knife to repeatedly stab a table in the butchery class to make his point. When I questioned the head Chef about why Mr. Disturbed could possibly stay in school given his history of borderline deeds, I was told to basically put up and get along with him, as if such potentially dangerous behavior was amusing rather than problematic or dangerous. The Head Chef even joked that Mr. Disturbed was in love with me, which is why I was sometimes the recipient of his odd threats. Later, another Chef took me aside and asked what I had been complaining about. When I told him, he sighed, and said, "Mary, that's one of the things that really bothers me about this place. We see that sort of stuff a lot, but there's not much we are ever allowed to do to stop it. It's about money, money, money."
If you want to attend cooking school in the Bay Area, weigh all your options. Community college programs at City College in SF, and Diablo Valley College offer other, less pricey alternatives. Another way to get in a kitchen is start from the bottom and work your way up. If you consistently show you are able to work hard, learn quickly, and handle the pressure, there will eventually be better jobs for you to do.