Pixel Tracker

Friday, January 18 , 2019, 7:08 pm | Fair 56º


Santa Barbara and Goleta Districts Welcome Students Back to School

Spirits were high Thursday for the first day of the new year

With a cup of coffee in his hand, McKinley Elementary School Principal Emilio Handall greeted dozens of students and their families with a jovial “Buenos dias!” and “Welcome back!” as they trickled in Thursday morning for the first day of school.

The Santa Barbara Unified and Goleta Union school districts both welcomed students back Thursday.

As parents and children climbed the hill on Coronel Street to the back side of the campus, Handall aptly noted what heading back to school means for families.

“All the adults have smiles on their faces, and all the kids are frowning,” he said with a laugh.

The school recently had uniforms donated for all of its students by Operation School Bell, so McKinley students looked sharp Thursday as they met their new classmates and teachers.

Handall said he expects this to be this best year ever for the school.

Although a time of transition, the district is also facing some bright prospects. The Santa Barbara elementary and secondary districts unified earlier this year, which doesn’t change much operationally but is expected to bring in $6 million more in funding from the state this year.

As a result of the move and employee concessions, the district’s Board of Trustees was also able to rescind layoff notices to more than 100 teachers.

The district is also starting the year with a new superintendent, Dave Cash. He replaces former Superintendent Brian Sarvis, who retired this summer.

Cash shared his vision for the district with administrators Thursday. A mantra of “Every Child, Every Chance, Every Day” was part of the message.

“My expectation is that all members of our staff get up each day determined to make a difference,” Cash said. “These are not just jobs, as there is no more important activity in any community than the education of children.

“Today was a great first day of school, and I am looking forward to working with all of our teaching and support staff and observing the great learning taking place in every classroom in our district.”

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.