Students residing in Southwest Portland may now have an easier time transferring to schools in Lake Oswego.

Under House Bill 3681, Oregon’s open enrollment law that went into effect last year, a school district may choose to accept transfer students without first receiving approval from the student’s home district after annually determining the number of open enrollment slots that will be available for the following school year. Students accepted via open enrollment are then considered resident students and the district receives the state funding allocated to each student.

For the 2013-14 school year, the Lake Oswego School Board has approved opening enrollment at Lakeridge High School to 50 incoming ninth-grade students and at Lakeridge Junior High School to 75 incoming students in grades six through eight from the area of Portland Public Schools north of Lake Oswego and south of Interstate 5, the boundaries for Stephenson Elementary School and a portion of the boundaries for Capitol Hill Elementary School

Open enrollment has also been extended to 25 incoming 10th-grade students from the area within the city of Lake Oswego tax boundaries not part of the Lake Oswego School District.

While the LOSD has opened its doors to Portland Public Schools students residing in Southwest, PPS has not given LOSD students the same option.

According to a press release published on the Portland Public Schools website Feb. 25: “In the first year of HB 3681 implementation, PPS had a net increase of 411 non-resident students entering the district through standard interdistrict transfer methods versus leaving through both open enrollment and standard methods.”

With that in mind, Portland School Board members approved a staff recommendation that Portland Public Schools not to participate in open enrollment.

The Riverdale School District, however, is another story. It has had a longstanding one-for-one reciprocal transfer agreement with LOSD in which the same number of students residing within LOSD boundaries are permitted to transfer to Riverdale schools as are Riverdale students permitted to transfer to schools in LOSD.

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