I recently moved to Bakersfield and did a lot of research on the area and the school districts/schools. Coming from a great school in Colorado I wanted to find the best for my son who is going into first grade.
My research found the northwest area had very good range of elementary schools, almost all of them scored above 800, which is the California goal when it comes to testing, and many of them were above 850, which is very high for the state. The Norris and the Fruitvale school districts all scored in the top 10 districts for the state and I would be comfortable with my son going to any of the schools that belong to these districts.
In the northern end of the southwest (or the southern end of the northwest, depending on how you see it) there is an area called The Oaks. There are two schools in this area that scored the top two spots for academics in 2010 in Bakersfield (Stockdale Elementary and Ronald Regan Elementary). The area is very expensive to live in and a decent size commute depending on where you work. You must also be careful as some of the schools in this area do not score above 800, so make sure you research the school boundaries carefully.
Hope this helps!