He said it’s actually an issue of whether a school board should have the right to deny transfers to students who live outside the district. That’s always been a power given to local school boards, he said.
“We certainly think every student has a right to attend school in their own district,” the superintendent said. “It’s a privilege to attend a school in someone else’s district.”
Western School Corp. Superintendent Randy McCracken agreed with Caddell.
In September, he said the property taxes that people living in the district pay help support the buildings and the transportation that transfer students take advantage of. Because of that, the district has to maintain the high expectations the community has for the schools.
“This high expectation includes the transfer students we accept,” he had said.
Caddell is worried a lottery system would affect graduation rates at his high school — a statistic the state monitors closely and one that could soon be tied to the school’s performance report from the state.
He said he had a student last year who was a junior and wanted to transfer to Eastern, but he had only four high school credits. The student wanted to be closer to his girlfriend, Caddell said.
Some students are so behind when they apply for a transfer that there isn’t any way Eastern could help them catch up and graduate on time, Caddell said.
Under this legislation, those students would have to be entered into a lottery if there were open seats in the district.
Karickhoff’s legislation says the only way a school board can deny a transfer request is if the student has been suspended in the previous year for 10 or more days, for causing a physical injury, for possessing a firearm or for violating drug or alcohol rules.