Sullenberger, a Danville resident, achieved fame on Jan. 15 when he piloted US Airways flight No. 1549 safely into the Hudson River in New York, saving the lives of all 155 people on board.
The hat is being auctioned off on eBay. Bidding began at 9 a.m. today and will end at 9 a.m. next Monday.
Auction organizers say Lockwood Elementary School serves one of Oakland's poorest and most crime-ridden neighborhoods, with nearly all of its 500 students coming from families whose earnings fall below the federal poverty level.
Dougherty Valley High School only opened in the fall of 2007, but it already has been ranked by the Academic Performance Index as one of the top schools in its district.
The two schools are sister schools.
Sullenberger's wife, Lorrie Sullenberger, said in a prepared statement, "Sully and I were excited by the opportunity to help these two public schools."
"We hope that the winner will enjoy owning Sully's hat but also that they will be happy that they have helped fund two deserving educational institutions," she said.
Denise Hibbard, principal at Dougherty Valley High School, said, "We take our sister school relationship seriously. We hope that this auction is a success."