Frequently Asked Questions

How is Hollister High School doing?
For 128 years, San Benito High School District (SBHSD) has delivered high-quality education for our students. The mission of SBHSD is to educate all students to their highest potential so they will have the greatest range of personal options upon graduation. 
I’ve heard our local high school is overcrowded. What are the details?
Hollister High School is the 10th largest high school in California. Enrollment is above its maximum capacity of 3,400 students and projected to reach 3,900 students in the next four years. Overcrowded high schools threatens student and teacher safety when quick action is needed in emergency situations, and makes effective student supervision difficult. 
What is needed to continue supporting safety and high-quality education for all students?
With growing enrollment at Hollister High School, a second local high school is needed to support students and teachers, maintain access to learning opportunities for all local students. 

SBHSD is pursuing all available funding opportunities for a second high school that would relieve overcrowding at Hollister High, and provide access to career pathways and job skills for all students. 

How will students benefit from a second high school, if funding is secured?
  • Provide all local high school students access to high-quality education by relieving overcrowding
  • Ensure a high-quality education with facilities that teach skills for college and career readiness
  • Build classrooms and labs for math, science, engineering, technology and core academics 
  • Offer local high school students classes and access to hands-on learning programs partnered with Gavilan College that include credit toward college or a job credential 
  • Provide specialized learning facilities for students with disabilities 
How would a second local high school be funded?
Funding would be needed from a variety of sources, including developers, state matching funds and potential bond measures in an upcoming election, which would require approval from at least 55% of local voters. 
Could the State take away any potential bond funds?
No. Every penny from a potential measure would stay local to support high-quality education in SBHSD. None of the funds could be taken away by the State. 
Could SBHSD obtain State matching funds for a new high school?
The State would provide up to 30% of the total project cost, assuming our local school district can provide enough local matching funds from developer fees and local bond measure revenue. If the District does not pass a local bond, taxes from local residents go to other districts throughout the State.  
Would developers pay their fair share for the high school?
Yes. The District plans to leverage State matching funds with local developer fees and bond funding to protect high-quality education for our local students. School districts collect fees from new development to reduce the impact of new students on existing schools. SBHSD is collecting as much it can by law from new development to ensure growth helps pay for local school facilities. Over the scheduled build-out of existing, known development, developer fees are expected to provide approximately $28 million. 
If approved by voters, how can taxpayers be sure bond funds will be used as promised?
A clear system of accountability would be required in any potential bond measures:

  • A detailed project list indicating projects that may be funded by the potential measure
  • A Citizens’ Oversight Committee and independent audits 
  • All funds must remain under local control and only support San Benito High School District 
  • No funds could be taken away by the State or used for other purposes
  • Public disclosures of all spending would be required
  • No funds would be used for administrator salaries or benefits
Does SBHSD have a strong fiscal track record?
SBHSD has a long history of strong fiscal stewardship. Any school bond measures would include strict fiscal accountability protections to continue SBHSD’s responsible management of funds.
I don’t have children attending local schools. How does this impact me?
Even if you do not have school-age children, supporting high-quality education is a wise investment. Our community is proud of the excellent education in our District and continuing our excellence improves the quality of life in our community and increases the value of our homes.
Has there been community input?
Yes. SBHSD created a Facilities Needs Committee (FNC) to review the community’s needs for a second high school and provide input on findings and recommendations for a second high school. The FNC consisted of 65 members from the community who met at least once a month for eight months in the 2022-23 school year. The FNC recommended that a second high school be built and to pursue all available funding opportunities. 
How much would potential school bond measures cost taxpayers?
No final decisions have been made, but estimates suggest tax rates would be around $36 per $100,000 annually of assessed (not market) property value. 
What is the difference between assessed value and market value?
The cost of bond measures is based on the assessed value of properties, not the current market value. If you owned your home for a long time, it’s highly likely that your assessed value is significantly lower than the market value of your home. 

The assessed value of a property is based on the original purchase price and may not increase by more than 2% a year, while market value tends to grow at a much faster rate based on market conditions. Thus, assessed value is usually much lower than the market value, especially if a property was purchased many years ago at a much lower price than it could be purchased for today. It is this lower assessed value upon which the cost of a bond measure is based. 

Didn’t we already pass a measure to fund our schools?
Yes. Local voters previously approved measures to fund classroom modernization and new facilities at Hollister High School. The bond measures repaired and upgraded aging classrooms, labs and school facilities at our 128-year-old local high school. Oversight committee reports and annual audits show the funds have been used as promised. You can access the link here: https://www.sbhsd.org/facility-needs-committee/.

While past bond measures have made impactful changes to our 1895 local high school, improving student learning, student safety and job and college readiness, those funds did not generate enough local funding to add a new high school, which is currently needed. 

 

What is the current enrollment and capacity of Hollister High School?
The San Benito High School District has served nearly 100% of the residents of the City of Hollister and San Benito County for over 125 years. Hollister High School is the fourth largest school in Northern California and still growing. The school has the capacity for approximately 3,437 students and enrollment is exceeded 3,500 students in 2023.

 

How can I learn more or ask questions?

Your Input Matters!

As SBHSD explores options to update local school facilities, we value your input. For more information, please contact our Public Information and Communications Officer, Adam Breen, at .