As the parent of a student who receives special education in our school system, we wanted to let you know about your options to exercise public and private school choice. Under a new state law passed by the Georgia State Legislature in 2007, parents of students who receive special education may choose to transfer their child to another public school or private school in Georgia.
Public School Choice Options
A parent can request a transfer to another public school within their school system as long as there is available space at that school and the school has a program with the services agreed to in the student´s existing individualized education program. If the parent chooses this option, then the parent shall be responsible for transportation to the school.
The parent may request a transfer to a school in another school system if there is available space and the system and school has a program with the services agreed to in the student´s existing individualized education program. A school system must agree to accept the student however. If the parent chooses this option and the school system accepts the child, then the parent shall be responsible for transportation to a school in that system.
The parent may also request a transfer to one of the state schools for the deaf and/or blind operated by the State Board of Education. Acceptance into a state school will depend if that setting is appropriate for the student´s needs. If the parent chooses this option, then the parent shall be responsible for transportation to the state school. Please contact the Georgia Department of Education for more information about transferring to a State School.
Private School Choice Option
If you are interested in transferring your child to a private school in Georgia, you may be able to take advantage of a Georgia Special Needs Scholarship. These scholarships provide funding that can be used to offset tuition costs at participating private schools in the state of Georgia. For more information on the Georgia Special Needs Scholarship and the parent application process, please visit the Georgia Department of Education’s website at http://public.doe.k12.ga.us/.
Special Education Director, Ben Hill County Schools