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Petaluma City Schools |  AR  6181  Instruction

Alternative Schools   

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At the beginning of each school year, the "Notice of Alternative Schools" shall be sent to all parents/guardians as set forth in Education Code 58501. During the entire month of March of each year, a copy of this notice shall be posted at each school in at least two places normally visible to students, teachers and visiting parents/guardians. (Education Code 58501)

(cf. 5145.6 - Parental Notifications)

Copies of Education Code 58500-58512, providing for alternative schools, shall be placed in the district office and in the principal's office at each school and shall be made available to any interested parent/guardian, teacher or student. (Education Code 58501)


All proposals for the establishment of an alternative school or class group shall:

1. Address district program goals and academic standards

(cf. 0200 - Goals for the School District)

(cf. 6010 - Goals and Objectives)

(cf. 6011 - Academic Standards)

2. Demonstrate that the number of students interested in enrolling in the alternative school is sufficient to meet desired student/teacher staffing ratios

(cf. 6151 - Class Size)

3. Demonstrate that teachers are willing to work within the program

4. Demonstrate that the proposed operational plan conforms with district timelines and makes equitable use of district staff, facilities and resources

5. Provide a statement of the specific anticipated costs of implementing the proposal as well as funding sources, including outside funding sources and/or district support

6. Include a comprehensive plan for a yearly evaluation of the program to be carried out by the district

(cf. 0500 - Accountability)

(cf. 6190 - Evaluation of the Instructional Program)


Students enrolled in alternative schools shall be selected entirely from volunteers. (Education Code 58503)

The district may establish alternative schools in each attendance area and/or on a districtwide basis, with enrollment open to all students districtwide. (Education Code 58505)

(cf. 5116.1 - Intradistrict Open Enrollment)

Previous classroom performance shall not be a criterion limiting any student from the opportunity to attend an alternative school. (Education Code 58504)

When an alternative class group is established within a school, the Superintendent or designee shall ensure that students currently enrolled in the school will not be displaced.

A parent/guardian may request that a student's enrollment in an alternative school be rescinded at any time. Such requests shall be effective at the end of the school year in which they are received unless an earlier date is agreed upon by the principals of the schools involved or by the principal and teachers of the class groups involved.


The district shall maintain and fund alternative schools at the same level of support as other district educational programs for students of the same age level. (Education Code 58507)

Teachers employed in alternative schools shall be selected entirely from volunteers. (Education Code 58503)

Students who have satisfactorily completed the prescribed course of study in a district alternative school and have passed the state high school exit examination shall be awarded a diploma.

(cf. 6146.1 - High School Graduation Requirements)

(cf. 6162.5 - Student Assessment)

Students enrolled in alternative schools may be eligible for district transportation in the same manner as students attending other district schools.

(cf. 3250 - Transportation Fees)

(cf. 3540 - Transportation)

Program Evaluation

The Superintendent or designee shall conduct an annual evaluation of alternative schools which includes testing of basic skills for student participants and which identifies the variables that may have affected student academic achievement. The evaluation process shall include input from teachers, parents/guardians and students from the alternative school. Evaluation reports shall be sent for review, by August 1, to the Superintendent of Public Instruction. (Education Code 58510)


approved: June 25, 2002 Petaluma, California