We like to think of Brea as a hidden gem in Orange County. The town has around 40 thousand residents and if you haven’t yet been here, it is located roughly 33 miles southeast of Los Angeles. The town’s name is Spanish and it means “oil” or “tar.” It was first visited in 1769 by the Spanish Portola expedition: the first Europeans to see the inland parts of Alta California.

The search for “black gold” became popular and lucrative in the 1890’s when landowner Abel Stearns sold 1200 acres in nearby Olinda to the newly created Union Oil Company of California. Within just a few years, the towns began sprouting wooden oil derricks on the newly-discovered Brea-Olinda Oil Field. The boom towns continued until the 1920’s when lemon and orange production became more of an economic engine here. In fact, during that time the Brea Chamber of Commerce’s slogan was “Oil, Oranges, and Opportunity.” The 1970’s brought the opening of the Orange Freeway and the Brea Mall, which quickly spurred residential and retail growth. In 2006, Brea was named one of the five best suburbs to live in the western United States in Sunset magazine. Part of the reason is because of the town’s comprehensive public art program, which has placed more than 140 artworks throughout the city. The public art project has been used by a number of communities around the country as a model and source of inspiration.

So we know there are many reasons to move to this wonderful community. But if you have children, your first question is about the quality of the school system. The Brea Olinda Unified School District offers families of an award-winning portfolio of educational choices built on a common sense of community and the common purpose of inspiring each and every student to succeed in school, career and life.

There are a total of 9 schools in the Brea Olinda District, beginning with preschool offered at all six elementary schools, one junior high, one high school and one continuation high school.


According to the Brea Olinda Unified School District it provides students:

– An academically rigorous, standards-based curriculum
– High expectations that respect the differences among its students
– Exceptional instruction in an innovative learning environment
– Opportunities for students to build confidence and strong character
– Participation of the entire school community in students’ success

The Brea Olinda School District is an award-winning school district with five California Gold Ribbon Schools, a California Model Continuation and two California Title One Academic Achieving Schools.

At Brea Olinda High School, there is an “Open Access” policy, where the school offers 23 AP and 9 honors courses within 8 career pathways, including two four-year academies: the Global Information Technology Academy (GITA) and the Building Industry Technology Academy (BITA). The district fields 22 varsity sports teams such as the nationally ranked Ladycats basketball program, and the school has regularly won league and state championships. With scores of extracurricular clubs and programs, students regularly bring home honors in various competitions.

As you can tell, there are many reasons to love Brea and its impressive school system. Let our team show you our area and we look forward to calling you “Neighbor” soon!

Photo by Monkey Business Images, Shutterstock
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