Open Enrollment Policies: State Profile

Open Enrollment Policies: State Profile - Ohio

Last updated: October 2018

Open enrollment policies allow a student to transfer to a public school of his or her choice. There are two basic types of open enrollment policies.

  • Intradistrict: Students transfer to another school within their resident school district.
  • Interdistrict: Students transfer a school outside of their resident district.

Depending on the state, open-enrollment policies are mandatory, voluntary, or both. 

  • Mandatory policies require districts to participate in the program.
  • Voluntary policies allow districts to choose whether to participate in open enrollment, often allowing districts the discretion to enter into transfer agreements with other districts.
  • States with both mandatory and voluntary policies usually require mandatory open enrollment in low-performing schools or districts, in defined regions of the state or in other specific circumstances while allowing voluntary open enrollment in the rest of the state.

View the full open enrollment database here.  


Open Enrollment Survey 2018
Does the state have open enrollment programs? Yes, voluntary interdistrict; mandatory intradistrict and interdistrict for students attending an alternative school.

Voluntary: The boards of all school districts must pass policies denying or allowing enrollment by students from adjacent school districts or any school district. Participating receiving districts must have policies and procedures for admitting students, including district capacity limits by grade level, school building, and education program.

Mandatory: The boards of all school districts must have interdistrict and intradistrict open enrollment programs allowing students to enroll in an alternative school in the same district or another school district. The board of education for each school district must have open enrollment policies for students enrolling in an alternative school, including application procedures and district capacity limits by grade level, school building, and education program.
 

Citations: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3313.97, § 3313.98
Ohio Admin. Code 3301-48-01, 3301-48-02

Do desegregation provisions impact open enrollment programs? Under both voluntary and mandatory open enrollment, districts' open enrollment plans must have policies and procedures to ensure racial balance is maintained.

Voluntary: To maintain an appropriate racial balance, a sending district may object to a student enrolling in another district.

Citations: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3313.97, § 3313.98
Ohio Admin. Code 3301-48-01, 3301-48-02

Does the state set priorities for districts to follow when accepting students for open enrollment? Yes.

Voluntary: Resident students of the receiving district and previously-enrolled students must have preference over first-time applicants. Receiving districts may deny enrollment to students who have been suspended or expelled by the sending district for 10 consecutive days or more in the current or proceeding term.

Mandatory: Receiving districts must give enrollment preference to students attending or living in the attendance area of certain schools in the district. Receiving districts may deny enrollment to students who have been suspended or expelled by the sending district for 10 consecutive days or more in the current or proceeding term.

Citations: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3313.97, § 3313.98
Ohio Admin. Code 3301-48-01, 3301-48-02

Who is responsible for student transportation? Parents are responsible for transportation, although receiving districts may provide transportation to and from a bus stop along a regular bus route within the district. Receiving districts may reimburse low-income families for the cost of transporting a student to and from the bus stop. In addition, school boards may be required to provide transportation in accordance with a court-approved desegregation plan.

Citations: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3313.97, § 3313.98, 3313.981, 3327.05


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