Friday, February 28, 2020     Volume: 20, Issue: 52

Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on November 6th, 2019, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 20, Issue 36 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 20, Issue 36

Santa Maria Bonita still sorting out school boundaries

By William D'Urso

The Santa Maria-Bonita School District is months away from re-establishing school boundaries that will determine which students attend which schools.

Maggie White, the district’s spokesperson, said she expects parents and students to learn whether they’ll be moved to a new school in the early months of 2020. It’s a process that she said the district undergoes every few years when a new school is built.

The new school this time is “The Measure T School,” a temporary name referencing the bond measure used to fund the construction.

An elementary school located at 750 Meehan St., it will shift the district’s current school boundaries and draw 750 to 800 students when it opens next August. White said it could eventually hit 950 students.

“Certainly some families and some students are super excited to start at a new school. They pick the mascot, they pick the colors, they’re the inaugural class,“ she said. “On the other hand, some families have a lot of loyalty to the school their child has been going to.”

Families sometimes get attached to staff, teaching style or location, she said. There aren’t a lot of options available for parents to keep their students in their current school, either. Some parents can apply to keep their kids at their current school based on where they may work or the child’s proximity to a family member who watches them after school. 

But White said the district adjusts the boundaries every few years with minimal parental outcry. 

The school district uses a computer program to make the transition as easy as possible. That program, White said, allows the district to determine where the majority of students live in relation to the school. It takes into account proximity to the school and if students who travel by foot would have to cross a major roadway.

White said the trick is keeping track of the student’s residences.

“A lot of our families are very transitory so a change for some of our families might not be as concerning as a families who has been there 10 or 12 years,” White said. “It’s a science to find the best boundary and least disruptive to students and families.”

The district will notify families of the changes, White said, with letters, phone calls, and by holding meetings. m

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