Administrative Rules and Procedures to Implement Policy 502.12

LEARNING COMMUNITY OPEN ENROLLMENT PROGRAM TIMELINE

January 15
Begin accepting applications

On or before Feb. 15
The Elkhorn Public Schools shall make available to the general public information, in compliance with the applicable requirements of the Learning Community’s Diversity Plan, for each school building operated by the Elkhorn Public Schools, by sending such required information to the Learning Community for dissemination to the general public

On or before Feb. 15
A parent of an open student who is currently attending an EPS school and who will complete the grades offered at this school shall provide notice of their desire to attend, as a continuing student, to another EPS school in the following year

On or before March 1
The Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education shall provide a notice to the parent of a continuing open student, who has completed the grades offered by this school, stating which school building or buildings the student shall be allowed to attend in the Elkhorn Public Schools as a continuing student for the following school year

On or before March 1
The Elkhorn Public Schools shall have completed and submitted an Enrollment Capacity Data Worksheet for each school building in the Elkhorn Public Schools to the Learning Community Coordinating Council, reporting the maximum capacity and total projected enrollment, including intra-district transfers, if any, before open enrollment for each school building for the following year

March 15
Application period ends at 5:00 pm (postmarked or hand delivered)

On or before April 1
Act to accept or reject each application

After April 1
A parent of a student who moves to a new residence in the Learning Community after April 1 may apply directly to the Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education within ninety days after moving for the student to attend a school building outside of the attendance area where the student resides. The Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education shall accept or reject such application within fifteen days after receiving the application, based on the number of applications and the qualifications required for all other students

By April 5
Notify the student, parent or legal guardian in writing of the acceptance or rejection of the application

By April 5
Provide copies of all open enrollment applications to resident school district and the Learning Community

By April 25
The student, parent or legal guardian must notify the Elkhorn Public Schools of their acceptance of such open enrollment placement on form provided by 5:00 pm (postmarked or hand delivered)

April 26 – April 30
If no confirmation of such open enrollment placement, the Elkhorn Public Schools must document two attempts to contact the student, parent or legal guardian

May 1
If no confirmation of such open enrollment placement, the open enrollment slot shall be determined vacant and if applicable, shall be filled from the wait list

First School Day
Approved open students attend Elkhorn Public Schools.

On or before Sept. 1
Annually, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall provide to the Learning Community Coordinating Council a complete and accurate report, both electronically and in hard copy, of all open enrollment applications received, including the number of students who applied at each grade level at each building, the number of students accepted at each grade level at each building, the number of such students that contributed to the socioeconomic diversity that applied and were accepted, the number of applicants denied and the rationales for each denial, and other such information as requested by the Learning Community Coordinating Council.

 

Learning Community Open Enrollment Program

COMPLIANCE

The Learning Community Open Enrollment Program shall be operated according to Nebraska Revised Statutes §§ 79-2110 and 79-611(2)-(4) and the procedures and criteria established by the Douglas and Sarpy Counties Learning Community Coordinating Council.

TERMS DEFINED

As defined in the statute, “a student who contributes to the socioeconomic diversity of enrollment” shall mean (i) a student who does not qualify for free or reduced-price lunches when, based upon the certification pursuant to Nebraska Revised Statute § 79-2120, the school building the student will attend has more students qualifying for free or reduced-price lunches than the average percentage of such students in all school buildings in the Learning Community, or (ii) a student who qualifies for free or reduced-price lunches when, based upon the certification pursuant to Nebraska Revised Statute § 79-2120, the school building the student will attend has fewer students qualifying for free or reduced-price lunches than the average percentage of such students in all school buildings in the Learning Community.

APPLICATION

For a student to attend the Elkhorn Public Schools as a Learning Community open enrollment student, the student, parent or legal guardian shall submit an application to the Elkhorn Public Schools between January 15 and 5:00 p.m. on March 15 for open enrollment for the next school year. All such applications must either be postmarked by March 15 or personally delivered to the Elkhorn Public Schools Superintendent’s Office, 20650 Glenn Street, Elkhorn, NE 68022, by 5:00 p.m. on March 15.

Application forms shall be those prescribed by the Learning Community Coordinating Council. These may be obtained from the Learning Community, 6949 South 110th Street, Omaha, NE 68128, (402) 964-2405, www.learningcommunityds.org, or from the Elkhorn Public Schools Superintendent’s Office, 20650 Glenn Street, Elkhorn, NE 68022, (402) 289-2579. The Elkhorn Public Schools may attach building specific information to the application forms, but may not amend the content of the application or request additional information from the applicant.

A separate open enrollment application is required for each student. Up to three open enrollment school buildings in the Elkhorn Public Schools may be listed on the open enrollment application, and shall be listed in the order of preference.

If all school buildings identified on an open enrollment application are at maximum capacity but the Elkhorn Public Schools has buildings offering the same grades which have remaining capacity, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall contact the student, parent or legal guardian and identify those school buildings within the Elkhorn Public Schools which have capacity, which the applicant may substitute for one or more school buildings identified on the submitted open enrollment application.

Applications shall be accepted for the immediately following school year only. Applications will be dated upon receipt and processed in the order received.

The Elkhorn Public Schools shall act on or before April 1 to accept or reject each application based on the capacity of the school building, the eligibility of the applicant for the school building or program, the number of such applicants that will be accepted for a given school building, and whether or not the applicant contributes to the socioeconomic diversity of the school building or program to which he or she has applied and for which he or she is eligible. The Elkhorn Public Schools shall notify the student, parent or legal guardian in writing of the acceptance or rejection of the application no later than April 5. If the application is denied, the reasons for the denial shall be stated. Copies of all open enrollment applications shall also be provided to the resident school district and the Learning Community on or before April 5.

The student, parent or legal guardian must notify the Elkhorn Public Schools on or before April 25 of their acceptance of such open enrollment placement. Such acceptance must be on a form provided by the Elkhorn Public Schools and must be postmarked by April 25 or personally delivered to the Elkhorn Public Schools Superintendent’s Office, 20650 Glenn Street, Elkhorn, NE 68022, (402) 289-2579, by 5:00 p.m. on April 25. If such notice of acceptance is not timely received, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall make at least two documented attempts to contact the student, parent or legal guardian in order to determine the status of the application. If the Elkhorn Public Schools either does not timely receive a notice of acceptance of an open enrollment slot or is unable to make contact with the student, parent or legal guardian by May 1, the open enrollment slot for the applicant shall be determined vacant and if applicable, shall be filled from the wait list as hereinafter provided.

SELECTION PRIORITY FOR OPEN ENROLLMENT

The selection process for open enrollment applications shall be conducted on a “by building by grade” basis, and according to the following selection priorities.

According to statute, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall give first priority for open enrollment to siblings of students who will be enrolled as continuing students in the requested school building or program for the first school year for which enrollment is sought in such school building. In the event the first priority applications for open enrollment to a building exceed the capacity of such building, the selection shall be determined on a random basis.

Second priority for open enrollment shall be given to students who contribute to the socioeconomic diversity of the enrollment of the building they have applied to attend, up to the remaining capacity of such school building. In the event the second priority applications for open enrollment to a building exceed the capacity of such building, the selection shall be determined on a random basis.

Third priority for open enrollment shall be given to students who do not contribute to the socioeconomic diversity of enrollment of the building they applied to attend, up to the remaining capacity of such school building. In the event the third priority applications for open enrollment to a building exceed the capacity of such building, the selection shall be determined on a random basis.

If the open enrollment applications received for a school building exceed the remaining capacity of a school building, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall establish a wait list order for all excess applications by random selection, and open enrollment slots which become available shall be filled from the wait list in order.

The Elkhorn Public Schools may, in its discretion, accept open enrollment applications in excess of the maximum capacity of a school building, in the order of selection priority as hereinbefore provided.

CONTINUING STUDENTS

Any student who attended a particular school building in the Elkhorn Public Schools in the prior school year and who is seeking education in the grades offered in such school building shall be allowed to continue attending such school building as a continuing student.

On or before February 15 of each year, a parent of a student who is currently attending a school building or program of the Elkhorn Public Schools, except a magnet school, focus school, or focus program, outside of the attendance area where the student resides and who will complete the grades offered at such school building prior to the following school year shall provide notice, on a form provided by the Elkhorn Public Schools, to the Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education, if such student will attend another school building within the Elkhorn Public Schools as a continuing student and which school building such student would prefer to attend. On or before March 1, the Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education shall provide a notice to such parent stating which school building or buildings the student shall be allowed to attend in the Elkhorn Public Schools as a continuing student for the following school year. If the student resides with the Elkhorn Public Schools, the notice shall include the school building offering the grade the student will be entering for the following school year in the attendance area where the student resides.

DUTIES TO STUDENTS

Open enrollment students, once accepted, shall be treated as resident students by the Elkhorn Public Schools in all matters except transportation.

CREDITS AND GRADUATION

The Elkhorn Public Schools will accept credits toward graduation that were awarded by another accredited school district. The Elkhorn Public Schools will award a diploma to an open enrollment student if the student meets the graduation requirements of the Elkhorn Public Schools.

STUDENTS INELIGIBLE FOR OPEN ENROLLMENT

Students who have been disqualified from the school building pursuant to the Elkhorn Public Schools’ Discipline Code, shall not be eligible for open enrollment. Students may also not apply to attend a school building in the Learning Community for any grades that are offered by another school building for which the student had previously applied and been accepted pursuant to open enrollment, absent a hardship exception approved by the Elkhorn Public Schools.

NEW RESIDENCE

A parent of a student who moves to a new residence in the Learning Community after April 1 may apply directly to the Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education within ninety days after moving for the student to attend a school building outside of the attendance area where the student resides. The Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education shall accept or reject such application within fifteen days after receiving the application, based on the number of applications and the qualifications required for all other students.

SCHOOL BUILDING CHANGE FOR EMERGENCY OR HARDSHIP REASONS

A parent of a student who wishes to change school buildings for emergency or hardship reasons may apply directly to the Superintendent, on behalf of the Elkhorn Public Schools’ Board of Education, at any time for the student to attend a school building outside of the attendance area where the student resides. Such application shall state the emergency or hardship and shall be kept confidential by the Elkhorn Public Schools. The Superintendent shall accept or reject such application within fifteen days after receiving the application. Applications shall only be accepted if an emergency or hardship is presented which justifies an exemption from these administrative rules and procedures based on the judgment of the Superintendent and such acceptance shall not exceed the number of applications that will be accepted for the school year for such building.

For purposes of these administrative rules and procedures, hardship exceptions and emergency or hardship reasons shall mean circumstances and changes beyond the control and influence of the student, parent or legal guardian, and is determined on an individual basis to be in the best educational interest of the student.

INFORMATION ON AND VERIFICATION OF QUALIFICATIONS FOR FREE OR REDUCED-PRICE LUNCH

A parent may provide information on the application for open enrollment regarding the applicant’s potential qualification for free or reduced-price lunches. Any such information provided shall be subject to verification and shall only be used for the purposes of open enrollment. A parent is not required to provide such information. Determinations about an applicant’s qualification for free or reduced-price lunches for purposes of open enrollment shall be based on any verified information provided on the application. If no such information is provided the student shall be presumed not to qualify for free or reduced-price lunches for the purposes of open enrollment.

Each year the Elkhorn Public Schools shall randomly select three percent of the open enrollment applications accepted, for verification of free and reduced-price lunch or non-free and reduced-price lunch status.

TRANSPORTATION OR ALLOWANCE

The parents or legal guardians of students participating in the Open Enrollment Program shall be responsible for required transportation except as noted below.

According to statute, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall provide free transportation or a transportation allowance for a student who resides in the Learning Community and attends school in the Elkhorn Public Schools pursuant to open enrollment if (i) the student qualifies for free or reduced-price lunches and lives more than one mile from the school to which he or she transfers, or (ii) the student is a student who contributes to the socioeconomic diversity of enrollment at the school building he or she attends and lives more than one mile from the school to which he or she transfers, or (iii) the student is attending a focus school or program approved by the Learning Community and lives more than one mile from the school building housing such focus school or program approved by the Learning Community, or (iv) the student is attending a magnet school or program approved by the Learning Community and lives more than one mile from the magnet school or the school housing the magnet program approved by the Learning Community.

The transportation allowance which may be paid to the parent, custodial parent, or guardian of students qualifying for free transportation pursuant to the above, shall be in accordance with the requirements of Neb. Rev. Stat. §§ 79-611(3) and (4) as amended.

MAXIMUM CAPACITY OF SCHOOL BUILDINGS

On or before March 1 the Elkhorn Public Schools shall have completed and submitted an Enrollment Capacity Data Worksheet for each school building in the Elkhorn Public Schools to the Learning Community Coordinating Council, reporting the maximum capacity and total projected enrollment, including intra-district transfers, if any, before open enrollment for each school building for the following year. In establishing a maximum capacity for each school building, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall follow the specific criteria, procedures, definitions and instructions set forth in the Diversity Plan of the Learning Community and the Learning Community’s Enrollment Capacity Data Sheets, and, in addition, shall take into consideration any unique circumstances having an impact on enrollment capacity. Such unique circumstances having an impact on enrollment capacity shall include, but shall not be limited to, planned expansion and increases of enrollment, projected future enrollments, growth issues pertaining to instructional staff, class size and unassigned instructional space, housing construction projections, and planned accommodations for future enrollment growth.

PROMOTIONAL EFFORTS AND INFORMATION

The Elkhorn Public Schools will collaborate with the Learning Community and with the other member school districts of the Learning Community, in promotional efforts to encourage open enrollment participation.

On or before February 15, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall make available to the general public certain information, in compliance with the applicable requirements of the Learning Community’s Diversity Plan, for each school building operated by the Elkhorn Public Schools, by sending such required information to the Learning Community for dissemination to the general public.

OPEN ENROLLMENT REPORT

On or before September 1 of each year, the Elkhorn Public Schools shall provide to the Learning Community Coordinating Council a complete and accurate report, both electronically and in hard copy, of all open enrollment applications received, including the number of students who applied at each grade level at each building, the number of students accepted at each grade level at each building, the number of such students that contributed to the socioeconomic diversity that applied and were accepted, the number of applicants denied and the rationales for each denial, and other such information as requested by the Learning Community Coordinating Council.

Adopted: March 10, 2010
Revised: May 10, 2010