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Daxon: A new school year, a new district superintendent for BOUSD

Brea’s public school students return to classes on Aug. 15. Remember when school didn’t start until after Labor Day? Not any longer.

Not only will our students be starting a new school year, so will the Brea Olinda Unified School District’s new superintendent Brinda Leon, who was officially named  the district’s top administrator in July by the school board.

Leon, a five-year employee of the district most recently held the position of deputy superintendent/chief human resources officer. She brings with her more than 23 years of experience serving in various district-level positions.

“Brinda Leon believes deeply in our mission, vision and core values,” said BOUSD Board President Carrie Flanders, “and we are confident that she will lead BOUSD to the next level of academic excellence.”

Flanders added that Leon has been helping guide the district through the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other challenges facing Leon and the district include school safety for the returning students, teachers and staff. Leon said, via email, that she is meeting with our law enforcement to evaluate school safety for improvements and upgrades. Good idea.

One safety system that is already in use at Brea schools is the Raptor Kiosks.

It is a pretty cool and secure system for all visitors to Brea schools. It has a touch screen for entering your ID, it takes your photo and prints out your badge, and only then can you enter the school building.  Personally, I’d like to see metal detectors installed at all of the schools.

Leon said about 5,800 students are returning in August to all of the district’s schools, from elementary to high school.

Are our schools are overcrowded? She replied that several of Brea’s schools are at maximum capacity or close to it, but the junior high is not overcrowded. There are no plans to build another junior high school, or any other school, she said.

Leon and the school board, however, are evaluating the space needs and resources at several of the schools, including the junior high.

The Brea Online Academy for TK through sixth grade will again be available. During the past school year, 105 students were enrolled in the online academy. It would be interesting to know how many of those students will choose to come back on campus. In addition to the online academy, Leon said there is also a home school option for grades K-6 and independent study option for grades 7-12.

Before the kids head back to classes, plan a couple fun times. On Aug. 2, take the kids to the Brea Police Department’s National Night Out, from 4 to 8 p.m. on Birch Street in Brea Downtown.

Check out police and fire vehicles and equipment plus K-9 demonstrations, exciting Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) activities for kids, CERT information, giveaways and music. There’s even a dunk tank for dunking Brea officers.

If you are thinking about becoming a Brea police officer, recruitment information will be available.

Aug. 10 is the last Concert in the Park. It is another way to celebrate the end of summer, especially for the kids.

Then Brea Fest is Aug.12 at the Civic and Cultural Center. Enjoy food tastes, musical entertainment, crafts for the kids and one last fun Brea event before the school bells again ring. Enjoy.

Terri Daxon is a freelance writer and the owner of Daxon Marketing Communications. She gives her perspective on Brea issues twice a month. Contact her at  [email protected]

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