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Petaluma City Schools |  AR  5123  Students


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Acceleration from Kindergarten to First Grade

A student enrolled in kindergarten may be admitted to the first grade at the discretion of the Superintendent or designee and with the consent of the parent/guardian, upon determination that the child is ready for first-grade work. (Education Code 48011)

Admission shall be subject to the following minimum criteria: (5 CCR 200)

1. The student is at least five years of age.

2. The student has attended a public school kindergarten for a long enough time to enable school personnel to evaluate his/her ability.

3. The student is in the upper five percent of his/her age group in terms of general mental ability.

4. The physical development and social maturity of the student are consistent with his/her advanced mental ability.

5. The parent/guardian of the student has filed a written statement with the school district approving the placement in first grade.

Continuation in Kindergarten

Students who have completed one year of kindergarten shall be admitted to first grade unless the parent/guardian and the Superintendent or designee agree that the student shall continue in kindergarten for not more than one additional school year. (Education Code 48011)

Whenever a student continues in kindergarten for an additional year, the Superintendent or designee shall secure an agreement, signed by the parent/guardian, stating that the student shall continue in kindergarten for not more than one additional school year. (Education Code 46300)

Retention at Other Grade Levels

The Superintendent or designee shall identify students who should be retained or who are at risk of being retained at the following grade levels: (Education Code 48070.5)

1. Between grades 2 and 3

2. Between grades 3 and 4

3. Between grades 4 and 5

4. Between the end of the intermediate grades and the beginning of the middle school grades

5. Between the end of the middle school grades and the beginning of the high school grades

Students between grades 2 and 3 and grades 3 and 4 shall be identified primarily on the basis of their level of proficiency in reading. Proficiency in reading, English language arts and mathematics shall be the basis for identifying students between grades 4 and 5, between intermediate and middle school grades, and between middle school grades and high school grades. (Education Code 48070.5)

(cf. 6142.91 - Reading/Language Arts Instruction)

(cf. 6142.92 - Mathematics Instruction)

Students shall be identified on the basis of either statewide assessment results or grades and other indicators of academic achievement, as established by Board policy.

(cf. 5121 - Grades/Evaluation of Student Achievement)

(cf. 6162.5 - Student Assessment)

If a student is identified as performing below the minimum standard for promotion, the student shall be retained in his/her current grade level unless the student's regular classroom teacher determines, in writing, that retention is not the appropriate intervention for the student's academic deficiencies. This determination shall specify the reasons that retention is not appropriate for the student and shall include recommendations for interventions other than retention that, in the opinion of the teacher, are necessary to assist the student in attaining acceptable levels of academic achievement. (Education Code 48070.5)

If the teacher's recommendation to promote is contingent on the student's participation in a summer school or interim session remediation program, the student's academic performance shall be reassessed at the end of the remediation program, and the decision to retain or promote the student shall be reevaluated at that time. The teacher's evaluation shall be provided to and discussed with the student's parents/guardians and the principal before any final determination of retention or promotion. (Education Code 48070.5)

(cf. 6177 - Summer School)

(cf. 6179 - Supplemental Instruction)

If the student does not have a single regular classroom teacher, the principal or designee shall specify the teacher(s) responsible for the decision to promote or retain the student. (Education Code 48070.5)

When a student is identified as being at risk of retention, the Superintendent or designee shall so notify the student's parent/guardian as early in the school year as practicable. The student's parent/guardian shall be provided an opportunity to consult with the teacher(s) responsible for the decision to promote or retain the student. (Education Code 48070.5)

(cf. 5145.6 - Parental Notifications)

The Superintendent or designee shall also provide a copy of the district's promotion/retention policy and administrative regulation to those parents/guardians who have been notified that their child is at risk of retention.

The teacher's decision to promote or retain a student may be appealed consistent with Board of Education policy, administrative regulation and law.

The burden shall be on the appealing party to show why the teacher's decision should be overruled. (Education Code 48070.5)

To appeal a teacher's decision, the appealing party shall submit a written request to the Superintendent or designee specifying the reasons that the teacher's decision should be overruled. The appeal must be initiated within 10 school days of the determination of retention or promotion.

The teacher shall be provided an opportunity to state orally and/or in writing the criteria on which his/her decision was based.

Within 30 days of receiving the request, the Superintendent or designee shall determine whether or not to overrule the teacher's decision. Prior to making this determination, the Superintendent or designee may meet with the appealing party and the teacher. If the Superintendent or designee determines that the appealing party has overwhelmingly proven that the teacher's decision should be overruled, he/she shall overrule the teacher's decision.

The Superintendent or designee's determination may be appealed by submitting a written appeal to the Board within 15 school days. Within 30 days of receipt of a written appeal, the Board shall meet in closed session to decide the appeal. The Board's decision may be made on the basis of documentation prepared as part of the appeal process or, at the discretion of the Board, the Board may also meet with the appealing party, the teacher and the Superintendent/designee to decide the appeal. The decision of the Board shall be final.

(cf. 9321 - Closed Session Purposes and Agendas)

(cf. 9321.1 - Closed Session Actions and Reports)

If the decision of the Board is unfavorable to the appealing party, he/she shall have the right to submit a written statement of objections which shall become part of the student's record.

(cf. 1312 - Complaints Against the Schools)

(cf. 5125 - Student Records)

(cf. 5125.3 - Challenging Student Records)

Involuntary Transfer

A decision to transfer a student involuntarily into continuation/small necessary/community day education classes shall be based on a finding that the student meets either of the following conditions: (Education Code 48432.5)

1. The student committed an act enumerated in Education Code 48900.

Involuntary transfer shall be made only when other means fail to bring about student improvement. However, a student may be involuntarily transferred the first time he/she commits an act enumerated in Education Code 48900 if the principal determines that the student's presence causes a danger to persons or property or threatens to disrupt the instructional process. (Education Code 48432.5)

(cf. 5144.1 - Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)

2. The student has been habitually truant or irregular in legally required school attendance.

(cf. 5113 - Absences and Excuses)

(cf. 5113.1 - Truancy)

3. The student has been suspended 20 days during the current school year.

4. At the conclusion of each semester for students grades 7-12 an audit of credit acquisition will be done at each comprehensive site. If a student is at or below the following number of credits for each grade level, the student may be involuntarily transferred to a Community Day School (7-8) or an alternative school (9-12) This will be determined by the following:

Adequate Student Progress

1. Junior High Students

a. 7th grade

Fall - 20

Spring - 50

b. 8th grade

Fall - 80

Spring - 110

2. High School Students

a. 9th grade

Fall - 15

Spring - 40

b. 10th grade

Fall - 70

Spring - 100

c. 11th grade

Fall - 130

Spring - 160

d. 12th grade

Fall - 190

Spring - 220

For students at or below the credit totals above, their comprehensive school site may submit a transfer request to the Petaluma City Schools Transition Team for consideration. The request shall contain current academic, attendance, and discipline records, and shall also detail site intervention attempts including but not limited to: teacher/student/parent meeting(s), counselor/student/parent meeting(s), selective class scheduling, referral to on-site counseling support, Student Study Team(SST) actions, Site Attendance Review Team(SART).

Prior to an involuntary transfer, the student and parent/guardian shall be given written notice that they may request a meeting with the Superintendent or designee. (Education Code 48432.5)

(cf. 5145.6 - Parental Notifications)

At the meeting, the student or parent/guardian shall be informed of the specific facts and reasons for the proposed transfer. The student or parent/guardian shall have the opportunity

to inspect all documents relied upon, question any evidence and witnesses presented, and present evidence on the student's behalf. The student may designate one or more representatives and witnesses to be present with him/her at the meeting. (Education Code 48432.5)

A written decision to transfer, stating the facts and reasons for the decision, shall be sent to the student and parent/guardian. It shall indicate whether the decision is subject to periodic review and the procedure for such review. (Education Code 48432.5)

The persons making the final decision for involuntary transfer shall not be members of the staff of the school in which the student is enrolled at the time. (Education Code 48432.5)

No involuntary transfer to a continuation/small necessary/community day school shall extend beyond the end of the semester following the semester when the acts leading to the involuntary transfer occurred unless the parent/guardian agrees to maintain current school enrollment. For consideration for a transfer back to a comprehensive site, the parent/guardian will initiate an application to the Transition Team on behalf of the student. (Education Code 48432.5)

However, at the request of a student or parent/guardian, the Superintendent or designee shall conduct an annual review of the involuntary transfer.

Voluntary Enrollment

With the consent of the Superintendent or designee, a student may voluntarily enroll in continuation/necessary small/community day classes in order to receive special attention such as individualized instruction. Students so enrolled may return to a comprehensive school at the beginning of the following school year, or at any time the Superintendent or designee gives consent. (Education Code 48432.5)


approved: June 25, 2002 Petaluma, California

revised: November 12, 2013