• November 18 Update

    Dear Central Bucks School District Community,

    For the past twelve years, the Central Bucks School District has operated as the third largest district in the state, trailing only the school systems in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. Recently, the Reading School District has surpassed ours in growth, with the Allentown School District close behind.

    This decrease in enrollment in Central Bucks is projected to continue over the next five years for a number of demographic reasons. This will have an impact on an array of things at CBSD. To start, we must examine the manner in which our buildings are utilized to optimize educational planning while ensuring the efficient capital management of our properties, all while continuing to provide the top-quality education that parents expect and the state-of-the-art facilities that our children, teachers and staff deserve.

    To assist this process, the district hired the firm, Crabtree, Rohrbaugh and Associates (CRA) to conduct a study of our district’s population trends, building utilization and capacity limits for each of our 23 schools.

    On Thursday November 3rd, CRA presented its preliminary recommendations based on the work completed over the past two and half years. There are two takeaways from the presentation that our Board of Directors must now consider regarding our schools and our attendance boundaries: K-12 grade realignment and the possibility of school closings.

    1. Grade Realignment

    The three Central Bucks high schools currently house students in grades 10 through 12. While the ninth grade year is recorded on students’ official high school transcripts, it is currently housed at the middle school level for one reason: space. With enrollment decreasing, we can now bring ninth graders to the high school. Doing so carries many benefits for students, including but not limited to:

    • Increased Access to Courses. Presently, ninth graders have no access to high school courses, including Advanced Placement offerings and other courses that could allow for diversification of academic pathways toward graduation.
    • Consistent, Efficient Academic Planning. In CB, the transition from middle school in ninth grade to high school in tenth grade requires students to change school counselors one year into their “high school” experience. Having the same school counselor for the duration of the high school experience provides continuity. Additionally, the district can also restructure its course catalog and sequencing of courses to accommodate ninth graders and increase access, opportunity and choice for these students.
    • Access to Athletics and Extracurriculars. Although ninth graders are technically in high school in our present model and in some cases do play high school sports, they are mostly ineligible for participation across the board in musicals, ensembles, clubs, etc. Having full access to high school athletics and extracurriculars provides long-lasting, definitive benefits for students.

    The proposed realignment also included the consideration to shift our middle schools to grades 6-8, and our elementary schools to grades K-5. Moving sixth graders to the middle school (which is a true middle school model as opposed to a junior high model) could have potential benefits as well by including sixth graders in a more age-appropriate population and providing more access, opportunity and choice regarding their core academic courses, electives and extracurriculars.

    2. Closing Schools

    When schools operate below 80% capacity, they are considered to be educationally and financially inefficient; therefore, redistributing students to achieve balance is recommended and even essential. Given this, the Board of Directors will consider the potential closing of one or more schools coupled with a reconfiguration of attendance boundaries.

    These moves will provide a significant cost savings that can be reinvested into programs and services across the district, benefitting students and teachers, while improving the financial return for taxpayers.

    CRA is recommending that the Board of Directors consider the closing of Linden Elementary, the adjustment of attendance boundaries and the redistribution of students to Doyle Elementary and Kutz Elementary.


    The Board of Directors has made no decisions on these recommendations. Before making any decisions, the Board and the administration want to hear feedback from the CBSD community. In late winter, the district will host a second informational meeting to provide more detailed information about potential grade realignment and the closing of a school. At this meeting, maps and other demographic information will be shared, and the public will have the opportunity to ask questions.

    Should the Board choose to adopt one or more of these recommendations, they would most likely take effect during the 2024-25 school year.

    Finally, we realize that change carries with it the potential for discomfort. That’s why we pledge to provide a well-developed transition plan and to communicate the process for implementing any changes directly with you every step of the way. Our goal is to provide as much information and explanation as possible and to ensure that our community and families are able to have their questions answered and their concerns addressed.

    Dr. Abram Lucabaugh

    November 3 Update: View a video of the Informational meeting in its entirety here.

    October 17, 2022 Message to Families

    In an effort to ensure the efficient use of our facilities, the Central Bucks School District contracted with a demographics firm in 2019, Crabtree, Rohrbaugh and Associates, to conduct a study of our population trends and building utilization across the district, including school enrollments, current attendance boundaries, and functional capacity limits for each of our 23 schools. While this work was delayed by the pandemic, the district has continued to move forward, presenting preliminary data at a 2020 finance committee meeting, an initial presentation during the Board's regular meeting in April 2021, and holding four additional Board executive sessions from 2021 to the present.

    On Thursday, November 3rd, 2022, the Director of Educational Planning from CRA, Dr. Fred Withum, will be presenting an overview of the process, including the protocols used, the data collected and analyzed, and current options and recommendations for action based on the work completed to date.  The presentation will take place at CB West HS in the auditorium from 6:30 – 8:30 PM and will include an opportunity for the public to ask questions after the presentation of information.

    Examining the manner in which our schools are utilized to optimize educational planning and capital management is an important undertaking for any district. We look forward to this informational meeting, and hope that you can attend to learn more about the purpose, process, and potential outcomes of this work.