Sunday, December 30, 2012

Question From Reader: Transfers into SFUSD 2nd Grade

From a reader, "I really appreciate all of the information about the numerous schools.  Unfortunately, I have noticed that almost all of the information is about the "normal" feeder grades, K, 6th and 9th.

My family will be moving to SF when our son is entering 2nd grade.  Where can we go to get more information about transferring into SFUSD in 2nd grade?  What are our chances of getting into various schools then?

Thanks you for your time!"

Readers - Can you help?

8 comments:

  1. I'd move in January, middle of the year, if I were you. If you move in August, you'll get caught up in the politics and they may not let you into any of your top few choices. If you move in January, someone always moves out and there are spots available at all the top schools and as a new resident you'll have priority over any transfers. Most hard to get into schools have spots open now for anyone transferring from another district or private, I knew a family who went private for only 4 months and used this and then got all 3 of their kids into Clarendon. I know another who did this for 2 kids from Rooftop, because of sibling preference.

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  2. The process is that you show up at 555 Franklin with the required documentation (list available on the SFUSD website) and an idea of where you'd like your child to go. Depending on what time of year it is, you either wait a short or a long or a very long time to meet with a counselor, who will let you know which (if any) of the schools you want have a slot.

    We came into the district about a week into 5th grade. There were spots available in a bunch of desirable schools -- we were somewhat limited by our transportation requirements, so weren't able to take advantage of "the best" schools.

    Since 2nd grade is a pretty uncommon time to change schools, you actually have a pretty good chance of getting a school that meets your needs. K, 6 and 9 are the "normal" times to change schools. There's a fair amount of movement at the beginning of 1st grade, since families who weren't thrilled with their K assignment and experience (or who went to private K as a stop-gap) enter the 1st grade lottery. By the end of 1st grade, most families have made peace with where they are -- so there isn't a ton of inter-school movement at the beginning of 2nd.

    Michelle

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  3. I would tour schools in the fall and see if there is a grouping of schools that you like which are in the same geographic area. For instance, Miraloma, Rooftop, Glen Park, Sunnyside, and Sloat are fairly close to one another. If you had a preference for one of these schools, move into the attendance area and see if you can secure a spot. Or see what is available, tour and move near the school. You definitely want to be near your school as driving around SF in the mornings can be a bit hectic. I would contact parents for public schools. They are a non-profit organization who help parents in their public school search. Public schools have different start times and before and aftercare options which you might want to look into if both parents are working full time.

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  4. Great comments. I am also planning relocation to the bay area with rising (for the 13/14 school year) Kindergartner, 2nd and 4th graders. The rising 2nd and 4th graders have been in a great spanish immersion program in Minnesota. Do you have any advice about where I might be able to find info about bay area immersion programs (public or private)?

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  5. To the original poster.. You will want to start reviewing neighborhoods and schools now, so that you can submit a list of choices when you move. Keep in mind that outside of K, 6 and 9, most of the openings that occur actually happen right before school begins or after the first week of school. That means, when you arrive in the summer, you will want to submit a list of your choices to SFUSD and meet with a counselor to see if there are any immediate openings in a school that might be on your list. If there is nothing available, you will submit your list and wait until the first week of school, when they do a count at all the classrooms and determine any available spots. This means you could be offered a spot at one of your desired schools after the first week of school. This is tough on your nerves but you should be able to get something. In order to keep yourself from going crazy, you should probably look into also securing a spot at a private or parochial school as a back-up in case nothing that you want comes through from SFUSD. Also keep in mind that if you happen to choose to live in a CTIP zone (Mission District), you will be at the top of the list for any spaces that are available. Good Luck!

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  6. To the commenter relocating from Minnesota... There are lots of great Spanish Immersion public options in San Francisco. You should be able to find great placements for your children. Take a look at Marshall, Fairmount, Alvarado, Buena Vista, Daniel Webster, Paul Revere and Flynn. There could be 1-2 others but definitely check-out these schools. It is easier to transfer into Spanish Immersion schools in the upper grades because there is much less competition - only Spanish proficient speakers can transfer into these schools after 1st grade. Good Luck!

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  7. RE: Spanish Immersion. Buena Vista and Paul Revere are K-8 so if you'd like to keep your children at one school, you might want to tour those schools first. Most privates have some Spanish language program as part of their normal curriculum. The San Francisco School has a very robust Spanish language program in middle school. One option would be to look at privates for middle school and publics for K-5. Fairmount, Alvarado, Buena Vista, Marshall, Daniel Webster (all publics) are also in a similar geographic area as Children's Day, Friends, Live Oak, and San Francisco School (all private K-8). St. Finn's Barr is a parochial school that has a good Spanish program as well. Once again, you do not want to drive all over San Francisco every school day picking up and dropping off your children so looking at locations and start times will be important. Consult Parents for Public Schools and SFUSD. Get the all schools map and that should help you.

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  8. Marin Prep is a Spanish "infusion" private school to consider.

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