Buena Park School District Adjusts Boundaries, Creates 2 Middle Schools

After reviewing feedback from more than 400 community members during townhall sessions, Buena Park School District will adjust enrollment boundaries and reconfigure two schools in an effort to balance attendance, strengthen TK-8 pathways and boost program offerings.

The unanimous decision, made Dec. 2, will add sixth grade to Buena Park Junior High, turning the campus into a middle school in fall 2020. In addition, Beatty Elementary will be restored to its originally intended use as a middle school, providing greater program depth for students in grades six through eight across the District.

“This was the right decision at the right time for Buena Park School District,” Board of Education President Irene Castaneda said. “We are so grateful to the community for sharing their concerns and ideas and their understanding of the critical need to make these adjustments, which ensures we can continue to provide the best possible education to the children of Buena Park.”

Buena Park School District leaders gathered information on the need for adjustments from the District’s Boundary Advisory Committee (BAC) on Nov. 12. It has been more than 20 years since the boundaries were adjusted. The change creates more consistent populations for campuses across the community.

District leaders followed that session with a pair of informational townhall meetings on Nov. 19 and 20, where families were given information on the proposed shifts at Beatty and Buena Park Junior High and had their questions answered on reconfiguration details.

Buena Park Junior High Principal Erik Bagger, who led the BAC, said the changes will create more tight-knit communities and all schools will feature Passion Programs such as Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID), science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM), and visual and performing arts.

Elementary school-level Passion Programs will feed into a middle school with a similar focus, creating a stronger pathway for student success, Bagger added.

“We have done such great work modernizing our classrooms and this reconfiguration is the next step in the development of the Buena Park School District in becoming a destination district for our area,” Bagger said. “The most exciting aspect of the reconfiguration is the launch of our passion programs, which will boost academic achievement through extracurricular programs.”

The District will hold launch its open enrollment period on Jan. 6, which will allow families to choose their schools for 2020-21. The District will also establish community associations such as a Parent, Teacher, Student Association, an English Learner Advisory committee and a School Site Council Advisory at the reconfigured Beatty Middle School.

“Thank you to all the community members who attended our informational townhall meetings to pose questions about the reconfiguration plan – their support is key for this plan to achieve success,” Superintendent Dr. Ramon Miramontes said. “We at the Buena Park School District believe the project will allow us to continue providing an amazing learning environment for our community and give us the necessary tools we need to expand and grow.”