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BHS Families Protesting Potential District Changes


Redistricting in the Kern High School District (KHSD) has been a hot topic for the past few weeks. People are taking to social media and writing to KHSD board members to voice their opinions. A group of mothers who have children going to BHS have been spearheading the activism in their neighborhoods.

Three weeks ago, there were three maps leaked that gave possibilities for new school attendance boundaries. Because of the addition of Del Oro High School, there will be district changes. Residents of Stockdale Estates, Laurelglen, Olde Stockdale, and Quailwood are threatened with possibly being moved out of BHS’s district.

Andrea Hansen is a Driller alumna and mother of two future Drillers, Class of 2034 and Class of 2036. Hansen, who lives in Stockdale Estates, says that “BHS is a microcosm of the real world. You have every element of diversity. Everyone learns to work together and figure it out. We want our children to experience that before going into the real world. You are definitely experiencing the diversity of the world there.”

“I just want my kids to be able to have the option to walk the same halls their parents walked and their grandparents walked.” she adds. “I want my children to have that experience, that energy, those feelings. They should not be robbed of that right.”

Amanda Meszaros, another former Driller and mother of future Drillers, says: “We did not live in [Stockdale Estates] before our daughter started high school. We played by the rules and applied for a transfer and were denied. We intentionally … bought a house in this neighborhood so that our daughter could go to BHS.”

These neighborhoods, dubbed The Rudder, due to the shape of the area on maps, have been a part of the BHS district for more than forty years. To spread the word about possible changes, Sarah Caid, a mother of two future Drillers of the classes 2025 and 2027, has helped spearhead outreach. Caid says that “We’ve written letters, we’ve passed out flyers for neighbors to send emails, we’ve gone up to Quailwood elementary and gotten signatures for a petition… A lot of people didn’t know about it… We would set up at the school and we had a sign and people would be like ‘what?’ We only did two days last week…probably an hour each day…we got a ton of signatures…”

In the most recent KHSD board meeting, a letter written by Laura Oesch, a Driller alumna and mother of one current and two future Drillers, was read to the KHSD board. The letter described how Laura and her husband – also a BHS alumnus – moved to Stockdale Estates so that they could send their children to BHS. The board responded by saying that there will be a time and a place for people to give their input at a future date.

These moms have created a Facebook Group, which they named Residents Against KHSD Boundary Changes, and has more than 300 members. The purpose of this group is to get out information and rally more people to join their cause. “Save The Rudder is trending,” says Meszaros.

Regarding responses that the group has received from the school board, Erin Pandol, a former Driller and mother of two, whose children would graduate high school in 2030 and 2031, is dissatisfied. Pandol says, “I would just say frustrating… there’s not an option [we’ve seen] that is acceptable.” These activists say there must be alternatives that satisfy the needs of KHSD without taking concerned families from their beloved BHS.

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    Beth NahamaMay 12, 2021 at 12:10 am

    Lily, Thank you for doing this article. I am surprised that a HS so far away from BHS is having an impact on the boundaries of my neighborhood. Boundary changes are always disruptive, but I don’t see the value of changing these boundaries.