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School board talks enrollment priorities

Submitted by on 1, June 22, 2009 – 5:50 amOne Comment

11Quick: If a student is diverted from their school for a few years and a new family with a kid the same age moves into the neighborhood, who gets priority when a space opens up at their school?

Wondering what the answer is? So, apparently are school district staff, who’ve brought the question of enrollment priorities to the school board for clarification of their policy. They’ll talk about it Tuesday night.

Some 590 of the district’s students (they had about 9,900 this past year) are in schools outside their neighborhood attendance zones for a variety of different reasons, including parental request, special education and English language placements according to School Board President Mike McMahon’s website. But an increasing number are elementary school students who were diverted to other schools because their was no space for them in their neighborhood school.

The district’s current practice is to return diverted students to their home school if space is available, and waiting lists are kept to determine the order in which they return. But it’s apparently not totally clear whether a child who has been diverted for a few years has priority over a new neighborhood resident or conversely, how long students who are diverted to other schools can stay there.

More to come on this, I’m sure.

The school board is also holding a special meeting at 5 p.m. today in the superintendent’s conference room at the district offices, 2200 Central Avenue. They’ll be talking about their values, vision and mission.

One Comment »

  • David Kirwin says:

    I'm not clear why the 1st question is initiated with "Quick". Snap judgments are perhaps the best why to determine serious judgments.

    Giving it a little thought, I would suggest that the student or family who has been in the district the longest should have 'earned' the right of first refusal. They should be giving the opportunity or offer of returning to the neighborhood school, but because they were forced to another further away school they may have adjusted to it and not want to switch, or they may. Some may not like this thought, just as I thought school boundaries should fluctuate with enrollment as opposed to the lottery or 1st come 1st serve.

    Any word on yesterday’s BOE meeting, and how each BOE member views their values, vision and mission?

    That would have been an interesting meeting, wish it was recorded. I hope others can start to examine how to use available technology and resources to drastically reduce AUSD labor costs. Looks like AUSD spent $3-4M more than they received this year and we are facing the 3 strikes of revenue reduction –shrinking enrollment, state reductions and local taxes ending. The Fed stimulus should be used as for the long-term switch to significant use of on-line and computer based education, not to temporarily try to hold onto present systems we will no longer be able to afford.

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