Category Archives: San Marcos Unified School District

City of San Marcos-School District Joint Meeting on School Development

City-School District Joint Meeting on School Development

A comprehensive update on Task Force progress will be shared during a joint public meeting between the San Marcos City Council and the San Marcos School Board on Thursday, March 29 at 6 pm at the San Marcos Community Center, 3 Civic Center Drive.

Last July, the City of San Marcos and the San Marcos Unified School District established the Joint Task Force on School Development (Task Force) to formally partner in planning for the future of San Marcos schools.

With a decade’s long history of supporting one another, the city and district serve the community of San Marcos together and their destinies are intertwined.

While growth presents challenges, it also brings energy to the community and strengthens the local economy.  Growth has been instrumental in supporting a robust School District and is a key component in providing funds to build future schools.

The recently established Task Force is focused on sharing information with their respective elected bodies and the public, identifying possible locations for school sites, and planning for the future.

Already, the Task Force has taken numerous steps to understand school needs and growth trends, and to come up with solutions for the current challenges:

  • Data Sharing & Growth Projections: While the district regularly collects data regarding growth trends, the Task Force has further examined information on the City General Plan – a 20+ year long term planning document –and data regarding actual build out.By analyzing current and anticipated residential growth, the School District is better able to determine its needs to increase capacity at school sites and to locate and purchase land for new school sites.
  • Exploring Options for Schools: The Task Force continues to review options for addressing increasing student enrollment across the city.Options include ways to optimize existing schools to handle current and projected demand, and ways to increase resources for school infrastructure.
  • School Site Search: A focus of the Task Force has been to identify possible sites for new schools.The district is in the initial phases of exploring several potential sites.

For more information, please contact Communications Officer Sarah Macdonald at (760) 744-1050, ext. 3174 or smacdonald@san-marcos.net

To learn more about the City of San Marcos, visit www.san-marcos.net. For more information about the San Marcos Unified School District, visitwww.smusd.org.

San Marcos residents fighting to block development by referendum – The San Diego Union-Tribune

San Marcos residents opposed to a 220-home development on Twin Oaks Valley Road have collected signatures for a referendum against the project.Residents gathered 5,000 signatures for a ballot measure to overturn City Council approval of the Brookfield development in San Marcos. Residents opposed say the development will worsen traffic and school overcrowding. Officials who support the project say it offers entry-level housing. Residents who fear a planned development will create problems for roads, schools and safety in San Marcos are trying to take the project to voters in November, in hopes of reversing the City Council’s approval.

READ MORE FROM Source: San Marcos residents fighting to block development by referendum – The San Diego Union-Tribune

SMUSD Governing Board approved Scenario 6 of the Attendance Boundary Changes

Click Here to See Elementary, Middle and High School Boundary Maps for Scenario 6

A message from SAN MARCOS UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

Good Afternoon,

At Tuesday evening’s Board Meeting, the Governing Board voted to select the boundary adjustments recommended by the Attendance Boundary Committee in Scenario 6.

In addition, the Governing Board approved an implementation plan beginning with the 2018-19 school year.  This plan provides various grandfathering provisions to current students in effected study areas at the elementary, middle and high schools.

Over the next several weeks, staff will be working to take the direction received from the Governing Board and implement it for 2018-19.  The grandfathering provisions will be clearly explained. In addition, we are preparing attendance boundary maps that reflect the changes and can be more easily read by our community.  Information will be posted on the District website and individuals impacted will be personally notified via US mail and/or email.  We appreciate your patience as we work through the details of this change.

Sincerely,

Melissa Hunt, Superintendent

Attendance Boundary Committee December Update from SMUSD

Attendance Boundary Committee December Update from SMUSD

On December 7th, the District’s Attendance Boundary Committee (Committee) met for the third time.  The Committee is tasked with providing two recommendations to the Governing Board.

  • Recommendation #1:  Propose adjustments to current attendance boundaries to optimize student capacity at each school.
  • Recommendation #2:  Propose an implementation plan / schedule for the Board-approved attendance boundary adjustments.
Following the Committee’s meetings on November 9th, Committee members were invited to the District office on three separate days to spend more time with the current attendance boundaries and provide additional suggestions, beyond those provided at the meeting on November 9th.
All of the suggestions received were reviewed for common themes and suggestions.  This resulted in the creation of 4 new scenarios.
On December 7th, the four new scenarios, along with the scenario from the first meeting, and a summary of each scenario were shared with the Committee.  Each member of the Committee was then given the opportunity to study the maps, ask questions, and then vote for their top-two choices of each scenario.  There were two scenarios that received the highest votes of the five total scenarios.
A discussion occurred following the voting process which resulted in some minor changes to the two scenarios.  It was agreed that these two scenarios represented the consensus recommendations to be submitted to the Governing Board for Recommendation #1.
The Committee also reviewed two proposed draft implementation plans and had an opportunity to discuss the pros / cons of each.  Ultimately, the Committee made changes to one of the draft implementation plans and it will be submitted to the Governing Board for Recommendation #2.
NEXT STEPS:
  • On January 16th, 2018, the Governing Board will hear a presentation from the Attendance Boundary Committee Chair on the recommendations from the Committee.  There will be no vote or action by the Governing Board at this meeting.
  • The week prior to the January 16th meeting, the recommendations will be placed on the District’s website for community review.  Instructions will be uploaded in how to view the maps and a link will be made available where comments may be submitted.
  • The Governing Board has the option to hold special board meeting to further study the recommendations from the Attendance Boundary Committee prior the the meeting on February 20, 2018.
  • The soonest the Governing Board would vote on attendance boundary changes will be at the meeting on February 20, 2018.
If you have any specific questions or concerns regarding the Attendance Boundary Committee, you may submit them HERE.

SMUSD Attendance Boundary Committee Update

SMUSD Attendance Boundary Committee Update

On October 19th, the District’s Attendance Boundary Committee held its first meeting.  The meeting is comprised over more than 100 individuals, with representation from each school in the District.

The Committee is tasked with providing two recommendations.
  • Recommendation #1:  Propose adjustments to current attendance boundaries to optimize student at capacity at each school.
  • Recommendation #2:  Propose an implementation plan / schedule for the Board-approved attendance boundary adjustments.
At the first meeting, the Committee heard presentations from District staff and its demographer (Davis Demographics) regarding the following topics:
  • Current District and School attendance boundaries;
  • Historical and projected enrollment growth;
  • Residential development and student generation rates;
  • Criteria for school boundary planning;
  • The role of the demographer; and
  • Next steps.

On November 9th, the District’s Attendance Boundary Committee held its second meeting. During the first part of the meeting, Davis Demographics provided information about factors that impact attendance boundaries and how adjusting boundary lines impacts available capacity at each school.

Davis Demographics also shared an elementary scenario, middle school scenario and high school scenario to consider regarding possible adjustments to the current attendance boundaries.  These scenarios are NOT official recommendations from the District Board, staff or Davis Demographics.  But, rather, they were something to consider in order to foster dialog and conversation.

Following the presentation by Davis Demographics, Committee members had an opportunity to work together to provide their own possible recommendations.

The recommendations submitted are being examined for common themes.  Draft maps will be generated and shared with Committee members at its next meeting on December 7th.

As a reminder, these meetings are closed to the public.  However, if you have any specific questions or concerns regarding the Attendance Boundary Committee, you may submit them HERE.

Important Boundary and Budgetary issues facing San Marcos Unified School District (SMUSD)

Important Boundary and Budgetary Issues Facing San Marcos Unified School District (SMUSD)
Attendance Boundaries potentially being redrawn and District Budget Deficit, the district website has the following topics with information links that are important and public information. Please participate and share in the discussion here and on social media as this important issue that may potentially impact San Elijo Hills and San Marcos.
District Budget Deficit

Among the most important responsibilities of the Governing Board and Superintendent is to ensure the financial health of our district, and to inform the community when changes in district finances might meaningfully impact the educational services San Marcos Unified School District (SMUSD) provides. That is the purpose of this letter.

Due to flattening state revenues, and dramatic increases in mandated costs, we are forecasting very difficult financial days ahead here at SMUSD, which we more fully explain below. As we enter these difficult financial times, we want you to be aware of our predicament, the circumstances that brought us here, and our path forward.

Attendance Boundary Committee

“San Marcos Unified’s new Attendance Boundary Committee will meet for the first time next week to begin their work on recommendations for the Governing Board’s consideration.  As meetings continue, you will find more information HERE regarding the progress of the committee. We anticipate the committee’s recommendations to go before the Governing Board in the early part of 2018, which they will then review and approve all or part of the recommendations.  Our community will have an opportunity to comment publicly prior to the Board taking action.”

 

Solar Project at San Elijo Elementary-Parking lot will be closed

Solar Project at SEES

Here are the details regarding our Solar Project:

The SMUSD Solar Project is ahead of schedule which means that our SEES construction for solar panel installation in our parking lot will begin this weekend, October 21.  The solar panels will be installed in our parking lot along with shade structure in front of the school at the student waiting area for drive up. There are several benefits coming both to SMUSD and SEES. If you haven’t had an opportunity to look over the resources provided by the District on our solar initiative, I encourage you to CLICK HERE to view the information on the website. You will find a short, overview video, along with more information on the process and FAQ’s.

Our parking lot will be closed for staff and visitors for 6-12 weeks.  We will need your support and patience during this time. The front of our school will have a construction fence as well for the installation of solar panel shade structure in the student waiting area.

We are working closely with Tesla, the installing solar company, to ensure that all safety precautions are

in place during construction. Our site will be staged with temporary fencing for the construction zone

prior to work commencing. All material and equipment deliveries will be coordinated to minimize impact during drop off and pick up times.

Parking:

All staff and visitors will need to park off site. There will be handicap parking available by KOC buildings.  You will need to enter from the drive up lane to access these spots.  We ask for your patience when visiting our campus during construction and parking off site. There will  be increased foot and construction traffic, and we want to make sure that everyone moves about the campus safely. Please park in designated parking spots and always use crosswalks.

Drive-up Drop off/Pick-up:

Drive up will be available for drop off and pick up for students in grades 2-5 as usual. Morning Drop-off for first grade will still be available.  There will be no drop off available for kindergarten during construction.

AM Kindergarten

  • Drop Off:  Students will enter through the KOC gate, hang their back pack up and line up by their classroom door. Students in room 601 will wait at their recess spot which is by room 103.
  • Pick-Up: Parents will enter through the KOC gate and meet their child’s class on the kindergarten playground.
  • There will be no curbside drop off for kindergarten families during construction.
  • Please leave strollers outside the kindergarten playground.

PM Kindergarten/Transitional Kindergarten

  • New Drop off time for PM only: 11:40. Please arrive prior to 11:47am for PM Kindergarten.
  • Drop Off:  Students will enter through the KOC gate, hang their backpack up and line up by their classroom door. Students in room 601 will wait at their recess spot which is by room 103.
  • Pick-Up: Parents will enter through the KOC gate and meet their child’s class on the kindergarten playground.
  • There will be no curbside drop off for kindergarten families during construction.
  • Transitional kindergarten will have regular drop-off with playground time at 11:40-11:50

1st Grade pick-up

  • First Grade families will still pick up near rolling gate. Please look for first grade pick up area which has been moved to just outside the rolling gate near the office.

Grades 2-5 pick-up

  • All students will exit to the rolling gate.
  • The back gate is still an option for those who would like to use the trails.
  • Drive-up will proceed as usual.  Drive up students will wait by the rolling gate.
  • Parents who meet their students outside the gates need to wait for students in waiting zone near kindergarten.

We anticipate taking a few days to get our new routines in place. Please allocate extra time for this transition as everyone learns our new routines.  We ask for all adults to think safety first by using crosswalks and driving cautiously.

We are excited to be part of a project that will provide savings, lesson plans, and educational materials

for all grade levels, as well as help our district go green. We will be sure to keep you updated on the

progress of our construction, but, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to email

solar@smusd.org.

SMUSD’s Upcoming Solar Project

San Marcos Unified is moving forward with an exciting district-wide project to install solar panels at many of our school sites. Tesla (formerly SolarCity) will install, maintain, and operate their solar panel system without any upfront costs to the District.  Savings from this initiative will amount to approximately $30 million dollars over our 20-year contract with Tesla.

For an overview on our solar project, please watch this short video.

Each phase of construction is completed in stages of prep work, fencing, drilling, completing the underground electrical, and installation.  Starting with Paloma Elementary on October 14, 2017, the prep team will begin working on site.  Once the prep work is completed at Paloma, they will move on to the next school in Phase 1, while the drilling team will begin work at Paloma – and so on and so forth.  This process will continue until all of the schools in Phase 1 are completed.  For visuals on this process, click here.

The phases are as follows:

 

  • PHASE 1:  Paloma Elementary, San Elijo Elementary, Woodland Park Middle, and Mission Hills High.
  • PHASE 2:  Twin Oaks Elementary, Joli Ann Elementary, San Marcos Elementary, and Knob Hill Elementary
  • PHASE 3:  Discovery Elementary, San Elijo Middle, Double Peak, San Marcos High, and Carrillo Elementary

 

In addition to working with the Division of State Architects (DSA) to ensure that all applicable rules/regulations are followed, our Facilities and Maintenance team have worked closely with each of our principals to determine the ideal location for the panels.  As many of our sites will have solar panels installed in their parking lot, parking will be affected during the 6-12 week construction period.  Families will receive a letter from their site prior to any work commencing.  You can also check your school’s website for more information on construction dates and parking/drop off adjustments.

For questions or concerns regarding this project, please email solar@smusd.org.

How San Marcos Unified Deals With a Rare and Welcome Problem: Booming Enrollment – Voice of San Diego

How San Marcos Unified Deals With a Rare and Welcome Problem: Booming EnrollmentMost school districts in San Diego County – and throughout the state – struggle with declining enrollment. But the city of San Marcos’ population has more than doubled since 1990, and that’s meant lots of new students for San Marcos Unified, which has to constantly find space for its growing student body.

READ MORE VIA Source: How San Marcos Unified Deals With a Rare and Welcome Problem: Booming Enrollment – Voice of San Diego

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