The Goleta Union School District serves the Goleta Valley, a suburban community of approximately 90,000 people that includes the City of Goleta and a large unincorporated area. The valley lies between the Santa Ynez Mountains and the Pacific Ocean and is adjacent to the City of Santa Barbara in California. The area is known for its cultural, academic, and recreational opportunities, as well as its mild climate.
The District serves 3,571 elementary students (K-6) in nine schools. Four schools receive schoolwide Title I support, three schools host District transitional kindergartens, and three state preschools are located at District facilities. In addition the District runs the Learning Tree Preschool, which enrolls special education students and general preschool students. Afterschool care programs are available for all schools, including either state supported Afterschool Education and Safety (ASES) programs or the District-run @Afterschool program.
Grade-level class size averages are under 20 in Grades K, 1, 2, and 3; and under 23 in Grades 4, 5, and 6. The District has a diverse student population and professional staff. Approximately 30% of students are English-Language Learners. Low-income students account for 38% of enrollment. Foster youth population is less than 5 students districtwide.
GUSD has a stimulating and challenging atmosphere with a capable, articulate and professional staff. Many teachers, classified employees, and administrators have enjoyed long careers with GUSD. The staff has developed a reputation for working with a diverse student population to develop individual student potential by providing high-quality instruction aligned with state standards and supported with 21st century learning skills. Core instruction includes comprehensive traditional academic subjects extended to include character development, digital literacy, art, music, hands-on science, and physical education. All schools offer embedded programs to address specific needs of gifted students and English Learners. Each school maintains a 1.0–1.5 full time positions to support intervention needs for all students. Each student in grades 3-6 has 1:1 access to Chromebooks. In grades K-2 there is one mobile digital device for every two students. All instructional environments include access to high speed wireless connectivity to the internet.
Parents are highly involved and continue to provide generous volunteer and financial support for schools. Parent education programs are offered on an annual basis with topics supporting parents of English learners to become engaged with their schools.
The District’s financial condition is sound and fully supported by local property tax revenue. GUSD employs over 238 certificated employees, 270 classified employees, and 204 non-affiliated employees. In addition, we employ a loyal group of substitutes for teachers and classified employees.
GUSD maintains excellent special education and support services at each site. In addition, special districtwide programs for students with disabilities are housed at District schools. Areas of specialty in these programs includes autism, communicative disorders, severe emotional disturbance, and other severe disabilities. Students in the Goleta Union Elementary School District become a part of the Santa Barbara Unified School District following 6th grade promotion. They attend Goleta Valley or La Colina Junior High School, in grades 7 and 8, and Dos Pueblos High School or San Marcos High School in grades 9 through 12.