Saturday, October 1 , 2016, 1:14 am | Fair 59º

  • Follow Noozhawk on LinkedIn
  • Follow Noozhawk on Pinterest
  • Follow Noozhawk on YouTube
 
 
 
 

Orcutt District Will Consolidate Two School Campuses

Students enrolled in the K-8 Casmalia campus will learn from seats in an Olga Reed Elementary classroom this fall when two Orcutt Union School District schools consolidate under one roof in Los Alamos.

Combining the northern Santa Barbara County district campuses — located about 30 minutes, or 26 miles, apart — will provide larger facilities for the 81 students currently occupying three classrooms at the Oak-8 campus in Casmalia, one of two schools in the district’s Orcutt Academy Charter program.

After analyzing logistics and considering costs, the Orcutt board of trustees voted 4-0 Wednesday night to merge the rural campuses, with board chairman Jim Peterson absent.

Some Oak-8 teachers, parents and staff applauded the decision, which takes effect in the 2014-15 school year.

Now officials will scramble to create a bus schedule and smooth transition.

“We have a lot of work to do, but we're happy to do it,” said Joe Dana, district director of charter programs and lead administrator at both campuses. “We think this will be a good move for students and staff from both OAK-8 and Olga Reed.”

Dana sent a letter to parents late Wednesday, outlining changes and background for those who hadn’t yet heard about the move that’s already a year in the making.

Teachers at the Oak-8 campus in Casmalia outside Santa Maria spearheaded the idea as a way to offer more hands-on activities space, not to mention a gym, cafeteria, library, expansive playground, track and more.

The 196 students at Olga Reed won’t see a huge difference — the schools will function separately with different schedules and classroom programs — except that Oak-8 students will soon occupy five spare classrooms on the Helena Street side of campus.

The schools will, however, share lunchtimes, recesses, arts programming, physical education programming, emergency responsibilities and more, Dana said.

Officials hope to organize an event connecting students from both schools in the coming weeks, along with an evening for Oak-8 parents to check out the Los Alamos school.

“As site administrator for (Orcutt Academy) and Olga Reed, I sincerely believe that this idea will benefit students from both schools,” Dana said. “Students will have more potential acquaintances and friends, teachers will have more fellow teachers to talk to and collaborate with and the two schools can come together for special events.”

The Orcutt district absorbed Olga Reed from an ailing Los Alamos School District in 2011, and similarly took over Casmalia School, starting the charter program in 2008.

Dana said the district doesn’t know what will become of the Casmalia buildings, although Superintendent Bob Bush told Noozhawk they could possibly house the charter’s growing Independent Study Program, currently located within Alice Shaw Elementary.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff 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.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk's intent is not to limit the discussion of our stories but to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and must be free of profanity and abusive language and attacks.

By posting on Noozhawk, you:

» Agree to be respectful. Noozhawk encourages intelligent and impassioned discussion and debate, but now has a zero-tolerance policy for those who cannot express their opinions in a civil manner.

» Agree not to use Noozhawk’s forums for personal attacks. This includes any sort of personal attack — including, but not limited to, the people in our stories, the journalists who create these stories, fellow readers who comment on our stories, or anyone else in our community.

» Agree not to post on Noozhawk any comments that can be construed as libelous, defamatory, obscene, profane, vulgar, harmful, threatening, tortious, harassing, abusive, hateful, sexist, racially or ethnically objectionable, or that are invasive of another’s privacy.

» Agree not to post in a manner than emulates, purports or pretends to be someone else. Under no circumstances are readers posting to Noozhawk to knowingly use the name or identity of another person, whether that is another reader on this site, a public figure, celebrity, elected official or fictitious character. This also means readers will not knowingly give out any personal information of other members of these forums.

» Agree not to solicit others. You agree you will not use Noozhawk’s forums to solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites, without Noozhawk’s express written approval.

Noozhawk’s management and editors, in our sole discretion, retain the right to remove individual posts or to revoke the access privileges of anyone who we believe has violated any of these terms or any other term of this agreement; however, we are under no obligation to do so.

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 through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.



Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >