When buying our first home, we considered what school district the home was in. We researched schools, the ratings, the teachers, and neighborhood violence but ultimately bought the home we thought would best fit our growing family. Me, like thousands of Portlanders, considered the possibility of a school transfer if we did not feel that the school within our district was the best option for our child.
Recently, the Portland Public Schools board approved changes to its in district transfer policy that went into effect this school year. The board faced scrutiny and even a protest regarding the changes to the transfer policy.
Passing with a four to one vote, Portland Public Schools switched from a lottery system to a petition system. The website: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/departments/enrollment-transfer/schoolchoice.htm#Process allows you to look up how to submit your petition and what they will be considering when reviewing the petitions.
The petition system will allow the school district to monitor and analyze the transfer requests. This will be giving the officials a better understanding of the desire for switching. There are obviously many reasons that parents may want their child to change schools and the Portland Public Schools office even created a spreadsheet for parents to walk through why they may be switching. Find that here: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/files/enrollment-transfer/Petition_reasons_chart.xlsx
As a parent and fellow PSU student, I see the petition system as being more effective and fair. The prior system known as the lottery system, left too much up for chance. Education of our children is not something to be left within the hands of luck. I view the petition system as giving education the priority over logistics of school boundaries.
For more information visit the official Portland Public schools website here: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/departments/enrollment-transfer/schoolchoice.htm#Process and read local articles such as: http://www.pdxmonthly.com/articles/2015/1/28/did-portland-public-schools-get-its-transfer-policy-right-february-2015 and http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2015/01/portland_public_schools_board_6.html