According to Ed Code and Board Policy, TK-12th-grade students are required to attend school in the district of residence of their parents or legal guardian. When a parent has a compelling reason and wants their student to attend a school outside of the district of residence they must obtain an IDA (Interdistrict Transfer). Benicia Unified School District (BUSD) welcomes students seeking an IDA, however, IDAs submitted after the board-approved cutoff date of May 15th will be placed on a waitlist for the next school year. The waitlist is valid for one school year. If your IDA is not approved, you will need to re-apply for the next school year.
Please take note of the following three important points:
- Release approval by the home district does not guarantee, or imply, transfer approval by the BUSD.
- IDA requests are approved for the school district, not for a particular school site. If approved, BUSD will enroll your student at a non-impacted school.
- If your student is receiving Special Education and/or Speech Language Services, please attach the most recent IEP. Failure to disclose or adhere to timelines will be deemed an abandonment of the request.
BUSD begins accepting the applications for IDAs for the upcoming year after January 10th. These permits will not be processed until May 15th at the earliest. Students requesting an IDA must be in good standing at their current school with good attendance (no cuts, tardies, or excessive absences), average grades (2.0 or above), and no discipline issues. The most current grades, attendance, and discipline (if applicable) must accompany the transfer request or the request will not be considered. The District may deny an IDA if the student is not in good standing or the District does not have space in the required grade level or program. Below are the steps to obtaining an IDA (Interdistrict Agreement) also known as a transfer from one district to another:
What are the steps for the Inter-District process to attend school in Benicia Unified?
Step 1: Begin with your residing school district (even if your child has never attended school in your district). The family should also request the most recent transcripts or report cards and include attendance and discipline(if applicable) unless the student is entering school for the first time (TK or K). If the reasons for the request are employment or childcare, proof of such must also be included.
Step 2: The residing school district then decides whether to approve or deny. If the request is approved by the residing school district, they will then send the approved IDA to BUSD directly. If the request is denied by the residing school district, the process ends there.
Step 3: BUSD Review Process: BUSD reviews the request and makes a decision based on available space and appropriate grades, attendance, and discipline. The Superintendent may approve a transfer for these reasons: the parent(s) works in Benicia for 10 or more hours per week, the student is a victim of a proven act of bullying (EC 48900), to meet the childcare needs of the student, to meet the students special mental or physical health as certified by a physician or psychologist, when the student has siblings in the District, to allow the student to complete the school year, to allow the student to remain with their graduating class, when there is valid interest in a particular program, and when a student is moving to Benicia within a month and has documentation to show this. The approval process may continue after the start of the requested school year, while class size is being reviewed. IDAs are not processed until May 15th or later. Failure of the parent to meet any of these timelines or provide any requested documentation will deem the transfer process as abandoned/withdrawn. The parent is notified of the decision as soon as possible. If the IDA is approved, the parent/guardian must submit all required paperwork, along with the signed IDA contract, within 10 business days. If the IDA is denied for reasons other than grades, discipline or attendance, or space availability, the parent can appeal. This appeal is to the Superintendent or Designee of Benicia Unified School District. The appeal, supported by reason(s), copies of most recent grades, discipline and attendance must be done in writing within 10 days of the receipt of the denial letter.
Step 4: Approval Process/Timelines: Approved families follow the instructions on the New Student Enrollment page that is linked on the approval email to finalize enrollment directly with the approved school site.
NOTE: IDA’s are good for 5 years or until a student changes schools and can be revoked or rescinded for continued disciplinary problems, failing grades or continued unexcused absences, excessive absences or tardies. This revocation cannot be appealed and is final. Continuing students in grades 11 and 12 cannot have their IDA revoked/rescinded after June 30th following their 10th-grade year. Requests for new IDAs can be denied for any grade level.
Instructions for IDA's for Benicia students to attend school outside of BUSD
Step 1: Parents or Guardian must fill out the Inter District Agreement form located below. (NOTE: The document located below and titled “IDA Form for students requesting to leave BUSD” should be downloaded and filled out electronically then emailed to IDA@beniciaunified.org)
Step 2: The district of residence, BUSD, will review the IDA and will approve or deny for the student to leave the district. BUSD will then send this paperwork to the district the parent is requesting the student attend.
Step 3: The requested district then reviews the paperwork and makes a decision based on available space and appropriate attendance and behavior.
Step 4: The parent is notified of the decision by the district the parent is requesting.
Should you have any questions please email IDA@beniciaunified.org.