What does Oregon's new open enrollment law mean for your child?
WHAT THE LAW DOES
The new statewide open enrollment law will take effect in the 2012–2013 school year. The new law allows Oregon parents to enroll their kids in any Oregon public school district, as long as the receiving district is accepting transfers. No longer will the student’s resident school district be able to block a student’s transfer to another district. Families who live inside a district that decides to accept transfers will get first priority to transfer their children to other in-district schools. Siblings of students who are considered residents of the district will get second priority.
HOW CAN YOU TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS NEW LAW?
Districts will announce how many transfers they will accept by March 1. By April 1 parents must request a transfer from the district they would like their child to attend for the 2012-2013 school year. Districts must notify parents if their transfer requests are accepted by May 1.
HOW LONG WILL MY CHILD BE ABLE TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OPEN ENROLLMENT?
The open enrollment law is set to expire in the summer of 2017, except for children who are already taking advantage of the law. Once a child is accepted into another district under this law, he or she will be considered a resident of that district until he or she graduates, enrolls in another district, or becomes ineligible because of age or expulsion. Parents should note that after one year of using the program, the receiving district can transfer students to another school within that district, provided that it is in line with district policy. (Districts cannot single out certain students for transfer, nor can they give preference to new out-of-district transfers.)
WHAT IF THE SCHOOL LIMITS HOW MANY TRANSFERS IT WILL ACCEPT?
Similar to current public charter school enrollment rules, the school will not be allowed to discriminate among transfers. If not enough slots are available for all students requesting transfers, the district will hold a lottery.
WHAT ABOUT TRANSPORTATION?
Parents are responsible for getting their child to an existing bus line within the district the child transfers to. Districts are allowed to provide transportation scholarships for low-income families or special bus lines, if they desire. For more information, contact the district into which you want to transfer your child.
WHERE CAN I LEARN MORE?
To learn more, you can contact the district you would like your child to attend, or read the bill that created open enrollment at http://gov.oregonlive.com/bill/2011/HB3681/.