PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION BEFORE BEGINNING THE CHOICE APPLICATION FOR THE 2019-2020 SCHOOL YEAR.

Para leer esta informacion en español o creole, comuníquese con el Departamento de Especializaciones al 561-434-8755 y pida hablar con un representante en español.

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APPLICATION DEADLINES

December 7, 2018*: Application deadline if either of the two choices is one of the following Arts schools:

· Bak Middle School of the Arts (all programs)

· The Conservatory School @ North Palm Beach—Music—Band, Music—Orchestral Strings, & Music—Vocal (grades 6–8)

· Boynton Beach High School Arts programs (Dance, Digital Media, Music—Band, Music—Vocal, Theatre, and Visual Arts)

· A.W. Dreyfoos Jr. School of the Arts (all programs)

January 25, 2019*: Application deadline for all Choice programs other than the Arts programs listed above. Late applications will be accepted after January 25, 2019; however, they will not be included in the March 2019 Choice lottery and will be entered after all applicants in the wait pool have been assigned.

*The Choice application deadline date(s) may be subject to change as a result of unforeseen conditions including, but not limited to: District/school closings, delay in school district daily operations, changes in school calendar, holidays, testing, etc. Updated deadline dates will be published.

LEARN MORE ABOUT CHOICE PROGRAMS
· Visit the Department of Choice and Career Options website at www.palmbeachschools.org/choiceprograms

· Explore the Choice options and submit your application at www.mypbchoiceapp.com

· View school websites and attend their Open House

· Email questions to choicequestions@palmbeachschools.org

APPLICATION OPTIONS FOR IN-HOUSE AND CHOICE PROGRAMS
Programs designated as "In–House" are available only to students who are zoned to attend the school with that program. Applications to In–House programs are highly encouraged because they increase the probability of student assignment to the program. All Choice and Career Academy programs require a Choice application and selection through a Choice lottery process. These programs are available to all students, regardless of zoning. If the student is applying for a Choice program that is offered at his/her zoned school, the zoned school program may be listed as the first choice.

APPLICATION ADDRESS AND RESIDENCY
The student’s address as identified in the district’s student information system (SIS), must be current and must match the address of the parent/guardian at the time of application submission. If the student’s residency has recently changed, the address must be updated at the student’s current Palm Beach County School District school prior to the submission of an application. The parent and student must be full–time Palm Beach County residents at the time of application submission. Non–Palm Beach County residents are ineligible to apply for a Choice program unless the parent or guardian are full–time employees of the School District of Palm Beach County.

Change of Address after Application Submission- If the address of the applicant changes after application submission, an e–mail notification will be sent to review their choices based on the student’s new address. Applications that are not updated after an address has changed will automatically become ineligible for the Choice lottery. · Address changes due to relocation are not allowed after the published application deadlines.

AUDITIONS
The following schools require auditions to determine eligibility: Bak Middle School of the Arts, The Conservatory School @ North Palm Beach—Music–Band, Music—- orchestral Strings, & Music— Vocal (grades 6-8), A.W. Dreyfoos Jr. School of the Arts, and Boynton Beach High School Arts Programs. Applicants will be scheduled for an audition by the individual Arts school. Applicants will be notified via e-mail and/or U.S. Mail of the audition procedures and/or the time and date of student audition

  • Students must be physically present for an audition. If a child is ill on the date of the audition, that student may be considered for a new audition date and time upon receipt of a medical doctor’s written verification of illness. This verification must be submitted to the appropriate Arts school within three (3) school days of the student’s scheduled audition. A new audition date and time will be selected by the school only if there are more audition dates available.
  • It is the parent/guardian’s responsibility to notify the audition school of a currently active IEP or 504 plan at the audition registration and/or on the audition date(s).
  • Higher audition eligibility scores are required for ascendinggrade levels at Bak Middle School of the Arts, The Conservatory School @ North Palm Beach, A.W. Dreyfoos Jr. School of the Arts, and Boynton Beach High School Arts programs. Contact the individual school for more information.
  • For additional information regarding Admission and Audition
  • Guidelines, visit the individual school sites
AVAILABLE SEATS IN CHOICE PROGRAMS
The greatest number of available seats at each school is for students entering grades kindergarten (K), six (6), or nine (9). The Choice booklet, pages 44–57, provides a range of available seats for each program. These numbers are not a guarantee of the number of available seats for the 2019–2020 Choice lottery as they are impacted by changing real estate markets, projected enrollment and/or boundary changes.
CHOICE PROGRAM SELECTIONS
One application per student may be submitted. A maximum of two Choice programs per application may be selected. Applicants rank first and second choices in order of reference. First and second choices do not have equal chances of being selected. Selection of a second choice does not decrease a student’s chance of being assigned to their first choice
· Choices may be any combination of programs or schools, with the exception of Duplicate Program section below.
· Programs with limited numbers of available seats may not have any second choice students assigned in the lottery.
· One application Choice program change will be allowed after submission and before the published deadline dates.
DUPLICATE PROGRAMS
If the student is applying for a Choice program that is offered at his/her zoned school, the zoned school program must be listed as the first choice or the application will not be processed, with limited exceptions:

· Beginning school year 2019–2020, students who are zoned to attend a school that has a current enrollment of 95% or more will have additional Choice program options in an effort to alleviate school capacity concerns. These students will be able to apply to a program as a first choice, that is also offered at their zoned school.
· All students may apply first choice to the following full Choice schools: Suncoast Community High School, A.W. Dreyfoos Jr. School of the Arts, Don Estridge High Tech Middle School, Bak Middle School of the Arts, Morikami Park Elementary School, Northboro Elementary School, Poinciana Elementary School, S.D. Spady Elementary School, and Village Academy.

ELIGIBILITY OF APPLICANTS
In order to be considered eligible for the lottery, applicants must meet specific criteria:

· All applicants must meet age and residency requirements.

· There are no pre–k or elementary Choice program eligibility criteria, with the exception of Dual Language Programs. Due to the rigor of Dual Language Programs after grade 1, applicants must receive an eligible score on a fluency exam to determine eligibility. Students entering a Spanish Dual Language Program for the first time in grades 2–5 must pass a fluency exam to determine eligibility prior to being made eligible for the Choice lottery.

· Eligibility criteria for middle school programs are listed on page 6 of the Choice booklet.

· Eligibility criteria for high school programs are listed on page 7 of the Choice booklet

· Students not meeting the eligibility criteria will not be considered in the lottery for that program.

· If a student is determined ineligible for his/her first choice selection, the second Choice program selection on the application does not move to the first choice preference.

· Students may not apply to a Choice program at the same school where they are currently on probation.

· If a student is exited from a Choice program, he/she is no longer eligible to apply for the same Choice program at the exited school in any future application cycle.

GPA Calculations for Eligibility:

· Incoming 9th grade applicants: GPA is calculated using the average of all classes for the 4th quarter of grade 7 and the 1st & 2nd quarters of grade 8.

· Incoming 10th–12th grade applicants: GPA will be based on student’s earned GPA at the time of eligibility determination.

· GPA calculations for any private middle school (grades 6–8) applicants on trimester schedules will be accommodated prior to the release of the lottery results.

HOME EDUCATION STUDENTS
Eligible Home Education students must be full–time residents of Palm Beach County. In order to determine eligibility for many programs, Home Education student’s report cards, transcripts and/or portfolios must be submitted to the applicant's school(s) for determination of eligibility, no later than February 1, 2019. The eligibility documentation may also be uploaded to the online application through January 25, 2019. Contact the Choice Coordinator at the school(s) for more information or e–mail Home–Ed questions to homeed@palmbeachschools.org.

LOTTERY SELECTION PROCESS
The 2019–2020 Choice program lottery will be conducted in March 2019. Within the lottery selection process, there are preferences to select applicants. These preferences are applied to first choice selections, only. If a program has more first choice applicants than available seats, applicants are assigned through the lottery selection process according to approved preferences in the following order (descriptions of each preference are described below):

1. Principal’s 20% list (optional)

2. Employee

3. Military

4. Priority SAC

5. Sibling (attending only)

6. Strand

Principal’s 20% preference is an optional selection of students based on an established set of criteria that is submitted to the Department of Choice and Career Options for approval. Although all students assigned with this preference meet the established criteria, not all students meeting the established criteria will be considered for the Principal’s 20% preference. Employee preference is provided to an applicant whose parent or legal guardian works at the school site where the student is applying as a first choice preference.

Military preference is provided to applicants whose parent or legal guardian is currently serving as a full–time active duty service member. The applicant must be claimed as a dependent on the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). Parents/legal guardians in the Reserve or National Guard and/or placed on active duty for annual training requirements will not be provided a preference in the Choice lottery. Official orders showing current active duty status and proof of dependency such as the student's military ID card must be uploaded with the application submission.

Priority SAC preference is provided to applicants residing in designated attendance zones if applying for one of the following six schools: Morikami Park Elementary, Northboro Elementary, Poinciana Elementary, S.D. Spady Elementary, Bak Middle School of the Arts, and Suncoast Community High School—Innovative Interactive Technology only.

Sibling preference is provided to applicants who have a sibling currently attending the Choice school in which the applicant is applying to as his/her first choice preference. The sibling must be scheduled to continue enrollment at the school during the following school year. The sibling must be listed on the “Sibling” section of the Choice application so the preference can be verified. Siblings who are currently in grades 5, 8 or 12 will not be considered eligible siblings for this preference as they will not be scheduled to attend the school the following school year. Although siblings applying to the same Choice school will not receive preference in the lottery, it is important to indicate this on the application so they can be easily identified as siblings applying together. A separate application must be submitted for each student as each sibling is considered a separate lottery applicant. The siblings must be listed on the “Sibling” section of each Choice application so it can be verified. Siblings applying together are not guaranteed to be assigned together. Pre–K siblings are considered if they are enrolled in a full Choice school only.

Strand preference is provided if the applicant has completed a similar preparatory Choice themed program (Arts, IB, STEM, Dual Language, etc.) at a lower grade level. applicants applying for a 6th grade program must have completed grades 4–5 of a similar preparatory Choice theme to receive this preference. Applicants applying for a 9th grade program must have completed grades 7–8 of a similar preparatory Choice theme. Strand preference for IB*/IB MYP students—First choice applicants for the high school continuation of the IB*/IB MYP program who have satisfactorily completed grades 7 and 8 (MYP Levels 2 and 3) and who meet the IB eligibility requirements will be assigned to the partner high school MYP:

Carver MS > Atlantic HS
John F. Kennedy MS > Suncoast HS
Conniston MS > Forest Hill HS
Pahokee MS > Pahokee HS
H.L. Watkins MS > Dwyer HS*

POST-LOTTERY PROCEDURES
To complete a lottery assignment into a Choice program, parents/guardians must accept the seat from their parent dashboard. The schools will send Choice program related documents that must be returned to the school by the school’s requested deadline date. All Choice programs require, as a condition for admission, that students and parents/legal guardians sign a contract agreeing to meet the academic, attendance and conduct expectations of the Choice program. Students who are selected and accept placement into a Choice program must agree to participate on a full time basis. Students who wish to participate in Dual Enrollment/Early Admit must exit their Choice school/program and return to their zoned school if it impacts their ability to complete required coursework for their Choice program.

PRIVATE SCHOOL STUDENTS
Eligible Private school students must be full-time residents of Palm Beach County. In order to determine eligibility for many programs, student’s report cards, transcripts and/or portfolios must be submitted to the applicant's school(s) for determination of eligibility, no later than February 1, 2019. The eligibility documentation may also be uploaded to the online application through January 25, 2019. Contact the Choice Coordinator at the school(s) for more information.

PROBATION & EXIT PROCEDURES
If a student exits a Choice school program, voluntarily or involuntarily, the student is not eligible to remain at the school as a non–Choice student. The parent or guardian has the right to withdraw the student at any time but removal at the end of the semester or year is highly recommended. Background checks will be conducted for select programs.Students who do not pass their background check will be exited from the program at the end of the first marking period. All Choice programs require students to maintain academic, attendance and conduct expectations. Students not meeting these requirements will be put on probation. If a student does not meet the terms of probation by the end of the designated marking period, or a Level 3 or 4 incident according to SDPBC Student Code of Conduct occurs, a diverse committee of school and district representatives, including appropriate team members supporting the student (ie: ESE, 504, ELL, SBT, etc) will be established to review, discuss, and recommend the appropriate action, including program exit as per the school program requirements. Schools may only exit students at the end of a trimester/semester unless a serious offense warrants such removal (Discipline Level 3 or 4 or recommendation of the school committee) Parents/legal guardians, on behalf of the student, may appeal an involuntary exit decision from a Choice school or program as outlined, below.

A request for an Involuntary Exit Appeal must be submitted, in writing, using the appropriate form (PBSD 2418), within five (5) school days from the school’s written notice of its decision to exit the student. At the time of application, parents are required to sign a statement acknowledging that they have five days to appeal and no appeal will be available after the five day window following the school’s written notice of its decision to exit the student. To download the PBSD 2418 Choice Appeals application, go to www.palmbeachschools.org/Forms/Documents/2418.pdf.

RESULTS OF CHOICE LOTTERY
The results of the Choice Lottery for the 2019–2020 school year will be released on March 29, 2019.* The results will be posted on your parent dashboard at www.mypbchoiceapp.com, as well as communications sent to the email address(es) on the application. Results will not be provided over the phone. Once the results are released, the parent/legal guardian of assigned students must accept or decline the assignment with the following conditions:

· When there are more students than available seats in a program, a computerized random selection is used to select students. Students who are not selected for a seat are placed into a wait pool.

· If eligible, students may only receive an assignment to one program; this will be indicated on the application status as ‘Assigned.’

· Students who received an assignment to their first choice program cannot decline the seat to remain in the wait pool for their second choice program.

· If a student declines their first choice assignment, the student must attend their zoned school.

· If a student was assigned to their second choice program, he/she can decline the seat to remain in the wait pool for their first choice, if they met the eligibility requirements for that program.

· An eligible applicant may not be selected for either one of his/her choices. If this occurs, the student is placed in a wait pool for the eligible program(s) and may be assigned for any openings reported by the schools.

· If seats become available at a school, additional computerized random selections from the wait pool may be made through 3:00 p.m. on the first day of school.

· Students assigned to a Choice program are eligible to participate in athletic and extracurricular activities at the Choice school they are attending.

· If a student is not selected to attend a Choice program prior to the start of the 2019–2020 school year, a new application must be submitted for the 2020–2021 school year.

TRANSPORTATION
Transportation is provided for Choice students in the form of bus stops within the Choice Transportation Zone for each school. Bus stops to Choice schools may be limited and located significantly farther from the student’s home than transportation to the student’s zoned school. Bus stops for Choice schools may not be within walking distance of a student’s home. Additional bus stops for Choice students will not be created. It is the parent’s responsibility to safely transport the student to the nearest bus stop or school regardless of where the student resides.

VIRTUAL SCHOOL STUDENTS
Eligible, full-time Virtual school students must be full-time residents of Palm Beach County. In order to determine eligibility for many programs, student’s report cards, transcripts and/or portfolios must be submitted to the applicant's school(s) for determination of eligibility, no later than February 1, 2019. The eligibility documentation may also be uploaded to the online application through January 25, 2019. Contact the Choice Coordinator at the school(s) for more information.