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DOC Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to frequently asked questions about the District of Choice (DOC) program.

General District of Choice (DOC) Questions

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What is the District of Choice (DOC) program?

The District of Choice program allows a student to transfer to any district that participates in this program. Districts of Choice agree to accept a specified number of transfers and may not use a selective admissions process. For more information, please refer to California Education Code (EC) Section 48300 through 48316. External link opens in new window or tab.

What is a DOC?

A District of Choice is a district in which the governing board has elected to operate the school district as a school district of choice and accept transfers from school districts of residences. For more information please refer to California Education Code (EC) Section 48301(a) (1). External link opens in new window or tab.

Where can I find data regarding the number of pupils transferred in and out of DOCs, the number of requests granted, denied or withdrawn, or just general data about DOC information?

Data on DOC transfers may be found on the District of Choice web page.

When will the DOC program become inoperative?

“This article shall become inoperative on July 1, 2023, and, as of January 1, 2024, is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, which becomes effective on or before January 1, 2024, deletes or extends the dates on which it becomes inoperative and is repealed.” EC Section 48315. External link opens in new window or tab.

County/District DOC Information

Are districts participating in the DOC program required to register with the California Department of Education (CDE) and their respective County Office of Education (COE)?

Yes, districts electing to participate in the DOC program are required to register with the California Department of Education (CDE) and their respective County Office of Education (COE) no later than October 15.

When is the deadline to register with the CDE for participation of a district in the DOC program?

October 15 of each year.

What is the CDE window of registration for DOC participation?

Generally, the CDE DOC registration window is open annually from September 15 – October 15.

Our district elected to operate as a DOC, how do we register as a DOC with the CDE?

Information on registering as a DOC with the CDE is available under the Registration and Withdrawal Process section of the District of Choice web page during the registration period. During the non-registration period you may contact CDE DOC staff by phone at 916-327-1824, or by email at DistrictofChoice@cde.ca.gov.

What is the process of withdrawing from the DOC program?

Under EC Section 48301(g), External link opens in new window or tab. if a district chooses to no longer participate in the DOC program, it shall inform both the CDE and their COE of this decision. Districts shall notify the CDE of their decision to no longer participate in the DOC program by completing the DOC Registration/Withdrawal survey between September 15 to October 15.
In addition, the district’s governing board must adopt a resolution to no longer accept the transfer of pupils as a District of Choice. Until such a resolution is adopted, the district remains a District of Choice and is subject to all requirements.

What is Average Daily Attendance (ADA)?

Please refer to EC Section 48307 External link opens in new window or tab. for a complete description of ADA.

How is ADA calculated for DOCs?

Please refer to EC Section 48308 External link opens in new window or tab. for more information on how ADA is calculated for DOCs.

What basic aid can a district receive for being under ADA?

Please refer to EC Section 48310 External link opens in new window or tab. for more information on basic aid and ADA.

Is a district required to provide transportation services under the DOC program?

Upon request of the pupil’s parent, each DOC that admits a pupil under this article to any school or program of the school district may provide to the pupil transportation assistance to that school or program, to the extent that the school district otherwise provides transportation assistance to pupils. EC Section 48311 External link opens in new window or tab.

Parent/Family DOC Information

I am a parent, how will I know about new information regarding new programs?

School districts are encouraged to hold informational meetings and make public announcements on the current educational programs the school district is offering so that parents may provide input to the school district on methods to improve the current programs and so that parents may make informed decisions regarding their children’s education. EC Section 48302 External link opens in new window or tab.

How do I apply to transfer for my child to a DOC?

Parents shall refer to the district’s application process. Districts shall post application information on their website, including applicable forms and timelines.

What is the deadline for applying to a DOC?

Transfer applications should be submitted to the DOC by the district’s posted deadline. Per EC Section 48308 (a)(1), External link opens in new window or tab. in general, transfer applications shall be submitted before January 1 of the school year preceding the school year for which the transfer is being requested.

My student was accepted through DOC, do I need to reapply each year?

Transfers will be renewed automatically each year unless the DOC elects to no longer accept any transfers through this program. EC Section 48308 (d) External link opens in new window or tab.

Can DOCs reject transfer applications from specific student groups, such as students with disabilities, English Learners, or other student groups?

No. EC Section 48303 (b) External link opens in new window or tab. is intended to ensure that special education, bilingual, English learner, or other special needs pupils are not discriminated against by the DOC because of the costs associated with educating those pupils. All students may take full advantage of the choice options available under the DOC program.

Can a DOC give priority to certain students?

(a) A school District of Choice shall give first priority for attendance to siblings of children already in attendance in that district.
(b) A school District of Choice shall give second priority for attendance to pupils eligible for free or reduced-price meals.
(c) A school District of Choice shall give third priority for attendance to children of military personnel. EC Section 48306 External link opens in new window or tab. (a), (b), (c)

 

Questions: District of Choice | DistrictofChoice@cde.ca.gov | 916-327-1824 
Last Reviewed: Friday, June 25, 2021
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