Board of Education on Transferring Your Child - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

08/24/04

Board of Education on Transferring Your Child

Nearly all the middle schools in Chatham County have been on the "needs improvement" list under No Child Left Behind for two years in a row. And the school board says if that's the case, parents can have their children transferred to other middle schools. But there's a problem.

Even with the No Child Left Behind Act giving parents the choice to transfer their children, they have little or no choice at all. As it stands, there's only one school parents can transfer their children to, but students first have to qualify.

"We wanted to offer some choice to parents of students that would actually qualify to one of our schools which was not needs improvement, which is the Montessori academy," Rita Butler with the Savannah-Chatham County Board of Education.

That one school is Charles Ellis Montessori. The only middle schoolers allowed to attend have to have some sort of private or parochial schooling or attendance at this school at some point during elementary school.

"We still have openings at Shuman and Mercer, which are in the academy section, so parents can apply to those academies if they want to move the children from the school they're attending," said Butler.

But here's something to consider: even though all the regular middle schools were placed on the needs improvement list, most didn't fail academically and members of the board of education want parents to really stop and think before they make a final decision.

"All our middle schools are on the needs improvement list for various reasons," explained Butler. "A lot of them have nothing to do with academics. It has to do with participation rates and other factors besides academics."

The deadline to apply for transferring your child is this Friday. Here is a release from the board regarding transfer eligibility:

SAVANNAH, Ga.— Savannah-Chatham County Public Schools reminds the public that the deadline for parents to apply for a CHOICE School Transfer under the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) is Friday, August 27, 2004.

During the week of August 9, 2004, letters were mailed to parents of their options to request a transfer to other selected schools under No Child Left Behind. The following schools must offer transfers:

Gadsden, Garrison, Juliette Low and Butler Elementary Schools

Bartlett, Coastal, Derenne, Hubert, Mercer, Myers, Shuman, Southwest, Tompkins and
West Chatham Middle Schools

Beach, Jenkins, Johnson and Savannah High Schools.

The only school available for middle school transfers is Charles Ellis Montessori Academy. High schools will have Windsor Forest and Groves available for transfer.

High school parents should note the impact school transfers may have on eligibility to participate in athletics.

High school transfers to Windsor Forest may impact graduation credit hours for students transferring from schools operating on a block schedule. Windsor Forest High operates on a traditional schedule for the purposes of obtaining credit hours.

Parents should read the information very carefully and contact the appropriate school if there are any questions.

Reported by: Nicole Teigen, nteigen@wtoc.com

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