AUSTIN -- Monday night the Austin Independent School District announced 29 schools will be frozen to transfers during the 2014-15 school year, while another 24 schools will be re-evaluated after priority transfers are approved.
Each year, the district determines which schools should be frozen to transfers because they have, or are expected to have, enrollments that exceed their capacities. Also, some schools are frozen to maintain stability in tracking patterns.
Parents may submit requests for student transfers beginning Monday, Jan. 6. There are two types of transfers -- priority and non-priority.
Priority transfers include requests for siblings to attend the same school and for the district to maintain tracking patterns. They also include requests for students to transfer from a school where they are a member of an ethnic group that comprises more than half of a school's population to one where their ethnic group comprises less than half of the population. The board has identified two groups eligible for priority transfers: Black/African American and Hispanic students combined and American Indian/Alaskan Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander combined.
Parents whose children are eligible for a priority transfer (sibling, tracking or majority-to-minority) must submit the request Jan. 6-31 for the request to be considered as a priority transfer. Parents whose children are not eligible for a priority transfer who wish to have a transfer request considered during the first round, lottery process also must submit the request Jan. 6-31.
The schools frozen to transfers in 2014-15 are:
High schools: Akins, Anderson, Austin, Bowie and McCallum
Middle schools: Burnet, Gorzycki, Murchison, O. Henry and Paredes
Elementary schools: Baldwin, Baranoff, Blazier, Brentwood, Bryker Woods (grade 5), Casey, Casis, Clayton, Doss, Graham, Highland Park, Hill, Kiker, Langford, Lee (grades 3 and 5), Menchaca, Pickle, Rodriguez and Travis Heights.
The schools to be monitored and possibly frozen to transfers in 2014-15 are:
Middle Schools: Bedichek, Dobie, Kealing, Lamar, Martin, Small and Webb
Elementary Schools: Andrews, Cook, Davis, Gullett, Harris, Hart, Houston, McBee, New North Central Elementary, Odom, Palm, Patton, Perez, Ridgetop, Summitt, Sunset Valley and Wooldridge.
The administration constantly will monitor space in all schools as boundary changes and/or reassignments are approved by the Board of Trustees. Any effects on the school freeze recommendations as a result of these changes will be brought to the attention of the board and the community.
During the board meeting, the district also provided an update about the student demographics at Lamar and O' Henry middle schools and McCallum high school:
The balance of ethnic groups at Lamar and O. Henry middle schools and McCallum High School has changed from predominantly Black/African American and Hispanic to predominantly American Indian/Alaskan Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander and white.
Students wishing to attend a magnet program at Fulmore or Kealing middle schools or LASA must apply directly to those programs. Students interested in attending a school or program that requires an application must apply directly to those programs. This includes Lamar Middle School and the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders and the international baccalaureate program at Anderson High School, the fine arts program at McCallum High School and the district's two-way, dual language program.