FC(LOCAL) - SCHOOL ATTENDANCE AREAS

With Attendance Zones

Prior to adoption of attendance zones for new schools or changes in existing attendance zones, public hearings shall be conducted according to the following procedures:

  1. The administration shall develop a preliminary report that should include demographics, alternative attendance zone possibilities, and other pertinent considerations, and shall present such report to the Board as a discussion agenda item prior to conducting public hearings in the proposed affected attendance zone(s).
  2. At least one public hearing shall be held for each affected attendance zone. Surrounding attendance zones shall be invited and encouraged to attend. The administration shall publicly advertise at least one time, five calendar days in advance of the scheduled public hearing, in a local newspaper.
  3. Following the last public hearing, the administration shall recommend to the Board as a discussion item the proposed attendance zone change(s). At a subsequent regular Board meeting, the proposed attendance zone changes(s) will be an action item. This meeting shall constitute a second public hearing and shall be advertised according to the District's policy regarding advertisements of regular or special Board meetings. The administration's recommendations shall have considered comments from the public hearings.
  4. Attendance zone revisions shall occur between September 15 and May 15 of each school year unless otherwise determined by the Board due to unforeseen circumstances.

Transfers and Assignments

School attendance areas shall be based on the neighborhood school concept. A student whose parents or legal guardians reside in the District shall attend the school located in the attendance area of the legal residence of his or her parents or legal guardians. Legal residence shall be determined by such factors as:

  1. Residence address for voting purposes.
  2. Appearance of address on tax rolls.
  3. Address to which first class mail is delivered.
  4. Address that appears in telephone directories, city directories, or similar listings of city populations.

Parents or legal guardians who claim more than one legal residence within the District shall be subject to the following provisions:

  1. In the event that legally married parents or legal guardians attempt to claim more than one legal residence within the District, the Board shall determine upon an examination of the facts whether any residence claimed is a bona fide residence or merely an ostensible residence for purposes of attending school in a particular attendance zone. A claim of an ostensible residence for purposes of attending school in a particular attendance zone shall be denied.
  2. In the event that the parents or legal guardians are either legally divorced or have filed pleadings in a pending suit for divorce, either parent or legal guardian may claim a residence for any child or children of such parents or legal guardians.

Open enrollment options for prekindergarten through grade 5 permit students to attend other schools of their choice within the limits established by this policy. A parent or legal guardian requesting open enrollment for his or her student shall be required to complete the transfer request form.

Students initially shall be assigned to the school within the attendance area in which they reside, with the following exceptions:

  1. A student whose place of residence changes from one attendance area to another during the school year may finish the semester at the school in which the student began, provided the parents accept responsibility for transportation, and may finish the year provided space is available and the principal approves. Transfer requests shall require principal approval.
  2. A student may be allowed to attend school outside the attendance area in which the student resides provided a residence is under construction or proof of a contract for construction is submitted to the Superintendent. Transfer requests shall require Superintendent or designee approval.
  3. A student may be assigned by the Superintendent to a school outside of the home attendance area in the special interest of the student and/or the school. Transfer requests shall require Superintendent approval.
  4. Grade 5 students shall be allowed to complete their elementary education at a particular elementary school if they move out of the attendance zone during the year or if they finish their fourth grade year at that particular school, provided the parents accept responsibility for transportation. Such students shall be required to complete the transfer request form at or before the time they move out of the attendance zone. Transfer requests shall require principal approval.
  5. A student may be allowed to attend a school outside the attendance area in which the student resides provided one of the parents of the student is a District employee. Transfer requests shall require principal approval.

Open Enrollment Intradistrict Transfer Program—Previously Approved Transfers

A parent or legal guardian shall not be required to complete a transfer request form for a student previously approved for open enrollment. The following guidelines shall apply:

  1. The campus shall send a renewal notice indicating approval or non-approval of open enrollment for the following school year no later than June 1.
  2. Although the District does not extend a guarantee that students approved for an open enrollment intradistrict transfer will be permitted to attend the school outside their attendance area in future years, such students shall be given first choice if space is available and the student transfer has not been revoked under FDB(LOCAL).
  3. Siblings of intradistrict transfer students shall be given priority assignments.
  4. All students who are approved to attend school outside their attendance areas shall be required to provide their own transportation.
  5. Transfer requests shall require principal approval.

Open Enrollment Intradistrict Transfer Program—New Transfer Requests

A parent or guardian may request a new student transfer within the District for students in prekindergarten–grade 8 and shall be required to complete a transfer request form.

Guidelines

Open enrollment intradistrict transfers between and among District elementary and middle schools shall be permitted in accordance with the following guidelines:

  1. Students in their home attendance areas shall always have first priority in assignments.
  2. An elementary student on open enrollment and who has a history of at least two unbroken years of attendance in the two highest grades offered at that school shall be given priority for open enrollment to the feeder middle school in order to remain with his or her peers.
  3. Parents may submit a new transfer request to attend a school outside the attendance boundary of residence from April 1 to June 1. New transfer requests shall be numbered as they are received by the elementary and middle school campuses.
  4. Approval or denial of a request for an intradistrict transfer shall be based on consideration of the student's disciplinary history and attendance records, as well as:
    • Building capacity;
    • Enrollment levels at each campus and grade level and in each program;
    • Growth projections;
    • Teacher allocations;
    • Allocations of other professional staff; and
    • Other criteria applicable to individual campuses.
  5. Parents shall be notified of their child's acceptance or non-acceptance no later than the end of the first day of school.
  6. If a student is approved for an open enrollment intradistrict transfer, the parents shall be required to agree to a one-year commitment to that school.
  7. No intradistrict transfer shall be approved that requires a change in classroom space or staff at either school, unless approved by the Superintendent.
  8. The approval of student transfers through open enrollment shall not alter the campus socioeconomic status more than two percent annually. The current school year's percentages shall be used.
  9. A student with an approved transfer shall not be eligible in subsequent years for a different intradistrict transfer unless the transfer student seeks to return to the campus that serves his or her attendance area.

Middle School Campus Principals

Transfer requests shall require principal approval. Transfers may be approved contingent on the campus being identified as an open campus for transfers. To be an open campus for transfers, the middle school must be at 90 percent or less building capacity by grade level.

Middle School and High School Attendance Areas

School attendance areas for students in middle school and high school shall be based on geographic boundaries adopted by the Board. A student whose parent or legal guardian resides in the District must attend the school located in the attendance area of the legal residence of his or her parent or legal guardian, unless the Board determines that special needs warrant an exception in the case of a particular student.

Legal residence shall be determined by such factors as:

  1. Residence address for voting purposes.
  2. Appearance of address on tax rolls.
  3. Address to which first class mail is directed.
  4. The address that appears in telephone directories, city directories, or similar listings of city population.

Family Change of Residence within the District

Grade 8 students shall be allowed to complete their middle school education at a particular middle school if they move out of the attendance zone during the year or if they finish their seventh grade year at that particular school, provided the parents accept responsibility for transportation. Such students shall be required to complete the transfer request form at or before the time they move out of the attendance zone.

Seniors shall be allowed to complete their high school education at a particular high school if they move out of the attendance zone during the year or if they finish their junior year at that particular school, provided the parents accept responsibility for transportation. Such students shall be required to complete the transfer request form at or before the time they move out of the attendance zone.

Nondiscrimination

The Board, Superintendent, other administrators, or teachers shall not make any distinction on the basis of race, color, ethnic group, or religion of any student who may be in attendance or who seeks admission to any school maintained by the District in the de-termination or recommendation of action under this policy.

However, the Board reserves the right to restrict open enrollment and transfer requests if such requests begin to significantly affect the ethnic balance of a school.

Special Education Students

Requests from the parents of special education students for open enrollment or transfer to another school or program shall be considered in accordance with applicable state and federal laws.

Transportation

Transportation for students granted permission to attend school outside their attendance areas shall be furnished by their parents.

UIL Eligibility

A student in grade 7 or 8 may transfer from one attendance area to another and participate in athletics, provided the transfer is processed at the regular time with other transfers and has approval. If the student transfers after school starts, the student shall be ineligible to participate in athletics for the entire school year during middle school.

Eligibility of Students in Varsity Athletic Competition

A student who attends the high school feeder middle school during grades 7 and 8 shall be immediately eligible for varsity competition.

A student who does not attend the feeder middle school during grades 7 and 8 shall not be eligible for varsity competition during his or her freshman year.

Establishing Residency

The first time a student enrolls in grade 8, he or she shall establish athletic eligibility in high school by the location of the student's residence (bona fide legal address of parent or guardian) at the time of such enrollment.

After the student's high school residence is established, the student shall be eligible for athletic activities affected by this policy only in the high school of said original residence. If a family changes legal residence from one high school attendance area to another, after enrollment in grade 8, the student may choose to:

  1. Retain UIL eligibility at the original school and continue to attend and participate there, if eligibility has been established by UIL rules; or
  2. Attend the new school subject to UIL transfer rule.

Harlingen CISD

FC(LOCAL)-X

LDU 2018.01

DATE ISSUED: 3/8/2018