Open Enrollment FAQS

FAQS on Ashland School District Open Enrollment (Open Enrollment Home)

After reading through the FAQs, you will find the Open Enrollment Application link at the bottom of the page.

GENERAL QUESTIONS

What is 'open enrollment'?

Why does Ashland have an 'open enrollment' policy?

Who Can Apply?

 

QUESTIONS FOR NON-RESIDENTS

Can my child play sports?

Can I enroll my child at a specific school?

Can I enroll my child at John Muir Magnet School?

Can I enroll my child in Willow Wind?

What is the lottery process?

What if there are not enough applicants?

What if there is room for one of my children but not the other?

Do I need to re-apply every year?

What fees do I need to know about?

What are the key differences between an "Open Enrollment Transfer" and an IDT or Inter-District Transfer"?

Can my child ride a school bus?

What if I miss the deadline for open enrollment?

 

QUESTIONS FOR ASHLAND RESIDENTS

I am an Ashland resident. Will open enrollment raise class size?

I am an Ashland resident. Will open enrollment limit my children's opportunities?

I am an Ashland resident. My taxes support the YAAL. What support do non-resident transfers bring?

I am an Ashland resident. Will my taxes go up to support activities for non-resident students?

Will open enrollment be harder on teachers?

What if I move from Ashland during the school year and want to stay ?

What if I move from Ashland during the summer?

 

 

What is 'open enrollment'? (top)

Under a new law, Ashland School District may choose to allow additional students from outside the district to attend Ashland schools.

In 2011, the Oregon legislature passed a law amending opportunities for students living outside a school district's boundaries to attend a non-resident district based solely on space available in the receiving district. Under the law, which applies to the 2012-13 school year and beyond, districts have the option to participate in a one-month period of open enrollment. For those districts that adopt an 'open enrollment' policy, each district must announce the number of openings by grade level as of March 1 for the following school year. Families interested in transferring must apply for transfer by midnight, April 1st and will be accepted based on available space. Once accepted, students are recognized as residents of the district for their K-12 schooling unless they enroll in another district. Districts are prohibited by law from considering criteria other than available program space during this open enrollment process.

This law is an addition to the existing method of inter-district transfers available to families. Under the current method, families must have approval from their resident district and the receiving district. Additionally, students may be denied by the receiving district if they have poor attendance, behavior or grades, or if there is not sufficient space in programs. The traditional method of inter-district transfers remains available in all districts year-round.

Why does Ashland have an 'open enrollment' policy? (top)

The Ashland School Board approved an open enrollment policy because of its commitment to preserve and enhance programs & education for our students by offsetting the fiscal impact of declining enrollment. The Board anticipates that an open enrollment policy will contribute to maintaining or reducing class size by allowing additional staffing and will stabilize grade cohorts so that each grade level has a consistent number of students over time.

Further, the Board intends that the 'open enrollment' policy will promote and support solid educational programming for students at all grade levels including:

- Optimizing grade configurations in the elementary schools so teachers can focus on developing curriculum for a specific grade-level over time

- Hosting a student centered middle school team structure that allows a high level of interaction between students and a core group of teachers

- Offering a comprehensive high school program with diversified learning opportunities that include elective and advance placement options

Who Can Apply? (top)

Only students who reside outside Ashland school boundaries between March 1st April 1st of the current year may apply. Students who currently live in Ashland but are planning to move outside the district after April 1st of the current year are ineligible to apply in the open enrollment process.

Can my child play sports? (top)

This rule is established by the Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA). http://www.osaa.org/

Under their current rules, if your child transfers to Ashland High School in 9th grade, they are eligible to play OSAA sports in their freshman year.

If your child transfers AFTER their 9th grade year, they are eligible to practice with the team for one year without competing, but may compete in their following years. For example, a student transfers in 10th grade, they may practice with a team in 10th grade and compete with the team starting in 11th grade.

Can I enroll my child at a specific school? (top)

No. Openings are identified on a grade-level basis district-wide. We will place successful applicants who have committed to a transfer to the district at requested schools when possible. Requests for a specific school must be honored for local residents first.

Can I enroll my child at John Muir? (top)

Open Enrollment applicants may request John Muir School and will be placed based on available space. Local residents take priority when space is limited during the first year a student is on open enrollment.

Can I enroll my child in Willow Wind? (top)

Willow Wind is an alternative district program and is in a different category than neighborhood schools because students must be a "match" for an alternative program and meet specific program criteria. Students placed at Willow Wind are placed at District discretion based on parent request, program match and available space.

FULL TIME program: Non-resident students may be considered for placement in Willow Wind after their first year in the district under open enrollment.

PART TIME program: Registered home schoolers may apply for OPEN ENROLLMENT as PART-TIME students based on available space. Successful applicants must be a match and meet program criteria as defined in the Student/Parent handbook. The District will make a determination on my child(ren)'s match to program criteria after a family interview and a review of any previous school records.

What is the lottery process? (top)

If we receive more applicants at a grade-level than we have available openings, then students will be selected by lottery starting with kindergarten and moving up.

If there is more than one student in the family and one student is selected, then siblings will also be accepted based on available space at their grade level.

What if there are not enough applicants? (top)

The district plans openings based on available facility space and staff resources. In some cases, we base openings in anticipation of hiring additional staff. If we do not receive enough applicants to support any needed additional staffing, the district will adjust the number of openings and inform affected families by May 1.

What if there is room for one of my children but not the other? (top)

It is possible that we can accept a student in an early grade and not have space available for an older sibling though siblings have priority in the lottery. In that event, the sibling will have a placement priority in following years until a space is available.

Do I need to re-apply every year? (top)

Once accepted as a Open Enrollment transfer student, you are considered to be a resident of the district for enrollment purposes and do not need to reapply for a transfer in the future unless you enroll in another district.

What fees do I need to know about? (top)

Non-resident students will be charged activity fees at the same level or greater than any fees charged to resident students. Local residents of Ashland support activities through the Youth Activities and Academics Levy (YAAL). Non-residents will pay higher fees because they do not fund activities through the levy.

What are the key differences between an "Open Enrollment Transfer" and an IDT or Inter-District Transfer"? (top)

Open Enrollment Transfers

Must apply between March 1 and April 1 for the following school year.

Do not need to be released by your home District.

If accepted, you are considered an Ashland student until you graduate or enroll in another district.

Inter-District Transfers (IDTs)

May apply for the current school year at any time or for the upcoming school year any time other than the Open Enrollment period from March 1 to April 1.

Must be released by your resident district one time.

May continue at receiving district as long as space is available.

Must maintain 95% attendance or better, grades at or above "C" or "proficient", and positive behavior while enrolled in Ashland Schools or transfer may be revoked.

Can my child ride a school bus? (top)

Families are responsible for transportation to the district boundary. If there are enough students that need a ride, the district will provide a school bus from Butler Ford to local schools.

What if I miss the deadline for open enrollment? (top)

If you miss the April 1 application deadline, you will not be able to apply for open enrollment. The deadline is set by state law. However, you may still be able to apply for a transfer through your resident school district. Traditional transfers require that your resident district sign approval, that the resources and space are available in Ashland and that you meet positive attendance, behavior and grade criteria.

I am an Ashland resident. Will open enrollment raise class size? (top)

Open enrollment will allow Ashland to maintain or reduce current class sizes by offsetting the impact of declining enrollment. In Oregon, school districts are funded based on the number of students served. Increased students will allow us to maintain or grow our human resources - teachers and classroom aides. The net effect will mean sustainable class sizes that are better for our community.

I am an Ashland resident. Will open enrollment limit my children's opportunities? (top)

No. Resident children will have the opportunity to select a different elementary school or seek placement at John Muir and Willow Wind before non-resident placements are considered during their first year in the district.

Additionally, open enrollment will help support programs like elementary music and PE, as well as course options at middle and high school for all attending students.

I am an Ashland resident. My taxes support the YAAL. What support do non-resident transfers bring? (top)

Non-resident students will be charged activity fees at the same level or greater than any fees charged to resident students. Local residents of Ashland support activities through the Youth Activities and Academics Levy (YAAL). Non-residents will pay higher fees because they do not fund activities through the levy. Each non-resident student will bring the same allocation from the State School Fund as resident students. At this time, that allocation is slightly less than $6,000 per student.

I am an Ashland resident. Will my taxes go up to support activities for non-resident students? (top)

No. The Youth Activities and Academics Levy (YAAL) tax rate is set at $1.29 per thousand of assessed value on property within the Ashland School District. That rate was set for five years when Ashland residents passed the renewal of the Levy in November of 2010.

Will open enrollment be harder on teachers? (top)

No. Open enrollment will not be harder on teachers and may help ease demands by funding increased staffing and allowing us to maintain or reduce class size.

What if I move from Ashland during the school year and want to stay? (top)

If you move from Ashland during the school year, you must apply for a traditional inter-district transfer from your new resident district for the remainder current school year and be approved by Ashland based on attendance, grades, behavior and program space. You may apply for open enrollment by April 1 st for the following year. After that date, you will need to apply for the traditional inter-district transfer for the following year.

What if I move from Ashland during the summer? (top)

If you move from Ashland during the summer, you must apply for a traditional inter-district transfer from your new resident district and be approved by Ashland based on attendance, grades, behavior and program space. You may apply for open enrollment for the following year.


►I have read the Frequently Asked Questions and am ready to complete the Open Enrollment Application.
 

OPEN ENROLLMENT APPLICATION




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