Internal Transfer Approval Criteria
Per Board of Education Policy 4023 - Internal Transfers, the following is a description of the method for determining space in a school, program, class and/or grade, including any explicit caps for the upcoming school year.
Please note: The following processes apply only to new internal transfer applications beginning with the 2015-16 school year. If a student has an approved internal transfer for the 2014-15 school year, nothing has changed for that student and their transfer. They continue to follow the rules outlined in the previous version of the internal transfer policy.
The MMSD internal transfer process provides an opportunity for our families to ask that their student attend an MMSD school that is outside of their regular MMSD attendance area. The internal transfer application process makes use of information about building capacity, classroom space, and other considerations to help ensure the best learning environments for all our students. Schools that are determined to be crowded are not eligible to receive applications for new internal transfers. Crowded is defined as at or above 95% the school capacity.
The internal transfer application process happens in two rounds. This year, Round 1 runs from May 4 through May 22, 2020. Round 1 capacity rates are projected using official school capacities and K-8 planning rosters as of the last week in April each year. These planning rosters provide a picture of which schools students are expected to attend during the next school year and include the results of school lotteries that are already complete. Although some students are likely to move over the summer between attendance areas or districts, during May these planning rosters are the best possible estimate of the next year’s enrollment for this purpose.
This year, Round 2 runs from May 22 at 4pm through August 20, 2020 at 6pm. The process is largely the same as Round 1, where schools at or above 95% of capacity are not eligible to receive applications for new internal transfers. The list of schools at or above this cap is updated based on results from Round 1 approvals. Instead of K-8 planning rosters, Round 2 will rely on the most current student counts available through enrollment week, which this year runs through August 20.
Schools with projected capacity at or above 95% are not an option for new internal transfer requests for the 2020-21 school year. Because high school capacities are impacted more by scheduling than space, they typically do not have capacity issues like K-8 schools and are excluded from this exercise.
Once applications are submitted for schools with capacity rates less than 95%, Enrollment Office staff works with the Chief of School Operations to review each request. The following are factors used in determining space at schools:
- Building capacity rates;
- Student counts at specific grade levels and in specific sections;
- Student Achievement Guarantee in Education (SAGE) classes are limited to 18 students in Grades K-3 in 23 elementary schools;
- Space in specific programs such as Special Education or English Language Learners; and
- First, second, and third location preferences expressed in the applications.
For Round 1, applications are reviewed using these factors after May 22. Applicants are notified whether their application has been approved or put on a wait list for consideration during Round 2 on or before July 1. For Round 2, applications are reviewed after August 20 using the same factors using current data. Applicants are notified whether their internal transfer request is approved or denied on or by August 27.