San Carlos Schools: Doors May Close for Out-of-District Families.
September 9, 2010
Fourth Grade Might Be End of the Road.
It seemed this was bound to happen… If you tried to enroll your child in the San Carlos School District for the first time this year, you found that the schools were pretty much packed to the rafters. And it's not just kindergarten anymore — the chronic over-enrollment challenge at the elementary school level that the San Carlos School District Board has worked so hard to alleviate last year now seems to be spilling over to its two middle schools, and the Board now faces a challenge of ensuring that there will be sufficient space for students who live within the San Carlos School District boundaries.
According to this article in the Daily Journal, the San Carlos School District Board may consider closing the door to out-of-district families once their kids move beyond the elementary school level. This means that after 4th grade, families of San Carlos school students who live outside the school district boundaries will need to find another option for middle school besides Tierra Linda or Central Middle School. This decision would not affect the San Carlos Charter Learning Center (SCCLC) since it is a K-8 school.
Once You're In, You're In.
By law, once a student is accepted into a school, they must be allowed to complete all of the grades that are available in that school. So under this proposal, out-of-district families will obviously not be displaced from the school they are currently attending. But since the San Carlos School District is structured such that middle school starts at the 5th grade, and technically middle schools are different from the elementary schools (i.e., they're not K-8), the District is allowed to impose this restriction.
This decision will obviously not be a popular decision with the 70 or so families that it directly impacts. And knowing the good folks at the School Board, they will do everything the can to accommodate these families down the road. But this is really a sign of the times for San Carlos — the quality of our schools has always been a HUGE draw for families when they decide where to live. And lately, the number of families with school-age children (or those planning to start families) has been definitely been on the uptick in San Carlos. Combine that with the perennial revenue challenges, and it was only a matter of time before the breaking point was reached.
Board Meeting Tonight.
If you have questions, or if you're interested in hearing more about this topic, be sure to attend the Board's regularly scheduled meeting tonight at 7PM at the Central Middle School library.