JFBA/JFBB-R, Choice Enrollment
The Board of Education is committed to providing a variety of learning opportunities to meet the diverse needs of students. Students will attend the district school determined by their residence unless an application for choice enrollment to attend another school or program is approved. No student will be enrolled in a school outside their boundary area without prior approval in accordance with this regulation.
The principal or designee of each school will be responsible for checking student enrollment records to determine that each student is a legal resident of that school’s attendance area or has an approved application for choice enrollment or placement.
A “choice enrolled” student is one who is a resident or non-resident of the Thompson School District attending a district school other than the school within their boundary area or school district of residence.
Students who wish to transfer to a different school must apply under choice enrollment in accordance with this regulation. Students who wish to return to their boundary school, after accepting a seat at a different school, are required to apply to their boundary school through the choice enrollment process set forth below.
In the event that any information is falsified or withheld from the district in connection with the choice enrollment process, any approval for enrollment or continued enrollment may be immediately withdrawn. If an applicant is not offered a seat or is waitlisted for a given school year, the student must reapply under the choice enrollment process if admission is desired for the following year.
The choice enrollment process is comprised of two separate applications:
- Round One - Round One runs from the first school day in November through the last school day in December. Students who apply during Round One window are included in the district’s enrollment lottery (if applicable) which is held after Round One's closure date.
- Round Two – Round Two's application window begins after the release of Round One's lottery results and concludes on the second Friday in May of the next school year. Round Two applications will be reviewed and placed on the waitlist within their priority group and grade level.
During both application periods, families must apply using the district’s online form, and students may submit applications for as many schools and programs as they choose. Families experiencing difficulty with the online platform may contact the district for assistance, but in no event will the Round One deadline be extended for applications submitted after the application window closes.
|October||District notification of Round One choice enrollment and the process for application communicated to families|
|First School Day in November||Round One choice application window opens|
|Last School Day in December||Round One choice application window closes|
|By the Last School Day in January||Lottery results are shared publicly; Parents/Guardians receive enrollment offer, waitlist or denial notification|
|Monday following the release of Round One Lottery Results||Round Two choice enrollment window opens; Round Two applications are reviewed and placed on a waitlist within their priority group and grade level|
|Within five (5) business days following the publication of seat offerings||Family deadline to accept or reject seat offering|
|Between First Monday in February and the end of Round Two||Following public lottery results and notification, schools offer seats to waitlisted students based on availability|
|Second Friday in May||Round Two application window closes|
|Ongoing throughout the school year||
Choice enrollment applicants remain on their prioritized category waitlist and offered a seat if the principal identifies additional availability in the school or program
Applications for Choice Enrollment
Requesting families must submit a choice enrollment application online. Families will have the option of requesting multiple schools.
Round One choice enrollment applications must be submitted within the application round, as defined in the timeline of this regulation. The decision as to whether a choice enrollment application is accepted or denied is based on criteria established by state law and TSD board policy. Status of all choice enrollment requests will be communicated to families in accordance with the timeline in this regulation.
Criteria to Determine Availability of Space or Teaching Staff
Choice enrollment within the district will be approved subject to space availability in the school or program requested contingent upon district class size guidelines and subject to teaching staff availability as determined by the receiving principal taking enrollment projections into consideration.
When multiple siblings apply for choice enrollment at the same school, they will be linked as siblings in the lottery process and to the greatest degree possible, family units requesting choice enrollment will be kept intact. Families who choice enroll and are not offered a seat will be placed on a waitlist and may be offered a seat at a later date.
The following priorities are applied to the choice enrollment process:
- A student of an inbound active duty military member.
- A student of a regular Licensed, Classified or Administrative, Professional & Technical (APT) employee, whether they reside inside or outside of the district.
- A resident student whose sibling has been in attendance and will be attending their requested school the following year.
- A resident student whose sibling has been selected via the lottery to attend the requested school the following year.
- A student who currently attends a Dual Language Immersion program that feeds into the school for which choice enrollment is sought.
- A student who resides in the District.
- A new student who resides outside the District.
Eligible applicants at each grade level will receive seat offers as space is available according to their priority group listed above, and their assigned waitlist number. When space is not available, one waitlist per grade or program will be established according to each student’s assigned priority group and vacancies shall be filled from the list in the order they appear. If waitlisted applicants are not offered a seat by the end of Round Two and wish to attend the school in the following school year, they must reapply under the choice enrollment process when the window opens.
Families may only accept one seat offer for enrollment. By accepting the offer of enrollment at a school that is not their designated boundary school, the family is declining their guaranteed seat at their designated boundary school. Students remain on the waitlist for schools to which they have applied but not yet received an offer for enrollment.
The district will provide notification for each Round One applicant of their application status (conditionally accepted, denied, or waitlisted) no later than the last school day in January. Families will be given five (5) business days to accept or reject the seat offer. If the family does not accept or reject the offer, the offer will expire and the family will have to reapply.
Should a request for choice enrollment be denied, the family will be advised by the principal that they may appeal the denial by contacting the assigned level director.
If the student appeals the denial, the principal will submit the reason for denial of the request, and the student’s request to the assigned level director considering the appeal. The assigned level director will review the student’s request and the principal’s decision and then make a determination.
Upon the student’s request, the Chief Academic Officer will review the decision of the assigned level director. The Chief Academic Officer’s decision will be final.
Continuing Enrollment Criteria
Any student enrolled pursuant to this policy will be allowed to remain enrolled at the school or program through the end of the highest level of the school unless the student is expelled from the school or program or the district determines that the student’s application contained material misstatements or omissions.
Permission for a student to attend a choice enrolled school may be rescinded at the end of the school year if the school’s growth in enrollment due to an increase in students living in the school’s boundary results in inadequate space or resources for enrolled students. In such case, the enrollment of choice students will be rescinded for particular schools or programs.
Any choice or transfer student may be denied enrollment for the next school year if, due to a change in circumstances, the school would be required to add programs, space, or teaching staff or make an alteration to facilities or equipment in order to serve the student or the student has been expelled or otherwise no longer meets the established eligibility criteria for the school.
The district reserves the right to rescind and/or amend any or all choice enrollments, including but limited to reassigning students to their boundary schools, if it determines that there is overcrowding of facilities, the choice school discontinues a particular program or cannot continue to meet the special needs of a student, the student no longer participates in the program that caused the choice enrollment to be made in the first place, or for other reasons authorized by law and considered by the district to be in the best interest of the student and/or the school.
Automatic Re-Enrollment Unless Otherwise Notified
Once a student is accepted under the choice enrollment process, reasonable effort will be made to permit the student to complete the highest grade in the building subject to the right of residents of the boundary area to attend the school.
Unless families are otherwise notified by the school or district, students accepted for choice enrollment will automatically continue attending choice enrollment school each year without the requirement of completing a new choice enrollment application. Should families wish to enroll their children in another district school (including their boundary school), they will be required to complete a choice enrollment application during the regular choice enrollment round according to these regulations.
Eligibility for Activities
Eligibility for participation in extracurricular and interscholastic athletics will be determined in accordance with applicable law, the rules of the Colorado High School Activities Association, and the district’s eligibility requirements. Students should be aware that changing schools may have an effect on the student’s eligibility for athletics. Current information about eligibility related to school transfers or choice enrollment is available at www.chsaa.org.
Any student who enrolls in a school outside of their attendance area by falsifying their address forfeits eligibility to participate in the school’s activities.
Grounds for Denial of Choice Enrollment
A choice enrollment request may be denied at any time if:
- There is a lack of space or teaching staff within a particular program or school requested.
- The school requested does not offer appropriate programs for the student, is not structured or equipped with the necessary facilities to meet the student’s special needs or does not offer a particular program requested.
- The student does not meet the established eligibility criteria for participation in a particular program including age requirements, course prerequisites, and required levels of performance.
- A desegregation plan is in effect for the school district, and such denial is necessary in order to enable compliance with the desegregation plan.
- The student has been expelled from any school district during the preceding 12 months.
- The student has demonstrated behavior in any school district during the preceding 12 months that is detrimental to the welfare or security of other students or of school personnel including but not limited to behavior that has resulted in an out-of-school suspension.
- The student has graduated from the 12th grade of any school or is in receipt of a document evidencing completion of the equivalent of a secondary curriculum.
Adopted prior to 1985
Revised to conform with practice: date of manual adoption
Revised June 5, 1991
Revised November 3, 1999
Revised April 5, 2000
Revised June 5, 2002
Revised December 8, 2004
Revised December 7, 2005
Revised May 5, 2010
Revised October 17, 2012
Revised June 19, 2013
Revised October 16, 2013
Cabinet Revised November 19, 2013
Cabinet Revised September 20, 2018
Revised October 20, 2021
Revised February 2, 2022
Revised September 20, 2023