If Buford City School System (BCSS) is known for one thing, it’s excellence. Excellence in academics. Excellence in athletics. Excellence in the arts. You name it, it’s on the BCSS list of things to achieve. BCSS empowers students from kindergarten to high school seniors to become globally competitive critical thinkers, innovative problem solvers, responsible individuals, productive citizens, and of course, excellent people!

The emphasis on world-class education doesn’t detract from the district’s family values. It prides itself on being a community that is both diverse and tight knit. Tucked a short distance from downtown Buford, the Buford City schools all sit within a one-mile radius of one another. This means that students get structure and familiarity from their first day of kindergarten to when they toss their graduation caps. For parents, staff and students, BCSS is home. For the eighth consecutive year, the school system has been ranked as first in the state by Niche.

The Buford City School System is comprised of five schools:

Where It All Begins: Buford Elementary

Buford Elementary is home to Kindergarten. In fact, it’s the one of the few schools in the state dedicated to just kindergarten. Little learners can grow and flourish in an environment that is tailored to them. Buford Elementary is where it all begins. The teachers have been trained in the structured literary approach of Orton Gillingham and the school boasts an average RIT score of 159.9 on the MAP Reading Assessment. The school uses a plethora of resources to provide a strong foundation in literacy, one that will carry on throughout a student’s career.

Belong and Achieve: Buford Academy

Buford Academy houses Grades one to three. It’s where students Belong and Achieve! The academy was named a FY22 Title 1 Distinguished School by the Georgia Department of Education. Last year, the school debuted its Odyssey of the Mind program that cultivated students’ problem solving with creative and unique challenges. The teachers are trained in the same Orton Gillingham literary approach that the students are already familiar with, which means the approach to literacy is consistent as they develop. Students from the academy checked out over 130,00 books from the media center during the 2022-23 school year. Plus, over 50 students joined the Million+ Word Club.

Buford Academy and Buford Senior Academy host the largest chapter of the All-Pro Dad program in the Southeastern United States. The program is designed for dads and children to engage in meaningful conversations and activities that strengthen their relationships. BA and BSA host four of these programs throughout the school year, with over 700 dads and students attending each event! Other community partnerships include involvement with local organizations such as the Buford Path Project, the Boys and Girls Club and the Gwinnett Co-Op. BCSS Community partnerships create stronger schools and healthier communities.

Building Student Achievement: Buford Senior Academy

Grades four to five belong to Buford Senior Academy, which was named a FY22 Title 1 Distinguished School. Buford Senior Academy is all about building student achievement. There’s a focus on taking challenges to the next level for students in this school. With a variety of activities like band, chorus, and after-school clubs each year, there’s plenty of multi-sensory options. There are club opportunities for those interested in pottery, chess, calligraphy, gym games, and more. In addition to Odyssey of the Mind, students can showcase their skills and academic talents at the Science Fair or STEM Derby.

Believe. Motivate. Succeed: Buford Middle School

A Title 1 Distinguished School for four consecutive years and Niche’s #1 Middle school in the state, Buford Middle School (BMS) is home to Grades six to eight. BMS students are known to be state Odyssey of the Mind champions, along with competition cheer. Students learn vital leadership skills through competitive career and technical student organizations. It’s not over till the band plays! The BMS Band had a record-breaking 33 students selected to the District 13 Honor Band this past year. There’s no shortage of musical genius here.

Triple A Excellence: Buford High School

Buford High School has upped the ante, recently reclassified from 6A to 7A by GHSA in 2022. The school had four athletic state championships during the 2022-2023 school year: volleyball, softball, game day cheer and gymnastics!

With the tremendous growth in student population, the school has recognized the need for a bigger sports venue. The brand-new stadium is expected to tout 10,000 seats, expanded concessions, a press box and parking to accommodate. The stadium is anticipating completion in fall of 2024. The high school also boasts a graduation rate of 96% and is recognized by the College Board for exemplary scores in four distinct areas: AP School of Distinction, AP STEM School, AP STEM Achievement School and AP Expansion School.

Facilities are expanding and improving in the Buford City School System! The middle school recently added 18 new classrooms and a renovated cafeteria. The Senior Academy will be constructing a new wing for the third-grade students in the fall of 2024. In addition to the football stadium, other projects on the horizon include a new career and technical education building. This project will include a construction lab, an engineering lab and several computer science labs. STEM students can rejoice!

The school system offers many advantages for its students, but also its staff and parents. The school’s millage rate is 12,55, which is approximately half of most other districts in Georgia. The district also has lower student-to-teacher ratios, which means students can benefit from more direct and personalized approaches, but also teachers have a class they can better instruct and manage. The student to teacher average ration is 15:1. Teachers also have access to in-house childcare facilities at a reduced price, which means their children can be nearby during the workday.

L to R: Daren Perkins, Phillip Beard (Chairman), Matt Peevy, Bruce Fricks, Kathleen Welch.