New Legislation Provides Assistance to High Mobility High School Students

Lozano Smith Client News Brief
December 2022
Number 57

On September 30, 2022, Senate Bill (SB) 532 was enacted with the purpose of improving educational outcomes for certain “high mobility” high school students who transfer between schools.  SB 532 seeks to provide efficient transfer procedures for these students.  The bill assists students who are in foster care, homeless, recent immigrants, migrant students, former juvenile court school pupils, or from a military family. 

Fifth Year Option for Transferring Students

Existing law provides the option of an exemption from all coursework and other requirements that are more than statewide course requirements for high school graduation, when mobile students transfer to new schools after their second year of high school. 

SB 532 requires school districts to:

(1) offer an optional fifth year of high school to mobile students in order to complete statewide graduation course requirements; and

(2) consult with students and the students’ educational rights holders regarding how enrolling in the fifth year of high school or accepting an exemption from the local educational agency’s graduation coursework requirements, may potentially impact the student.

Transcript Requirements for Transferring Students

SB 532 also clarifies procedures that require a transferring student’s prior school to forward the student’s full and partial credits to the student’s new school.  This process prevents a transferring student from unnecessarily retaking a course.  Specifically, SB 532 requires a transferring school to issue to the new school all full and partial credits and list them on the student’s official transcript.  The bill also requires that the new school accept and issue the credits forwarded by the transferring school.  If the new school is aware that full or partial credits are not in the student’s transcript, the new school must contact the transferring school within two business days.  The transferring school must then issue the appropriate credits and provide all academic records of the credits to the new school, within two business days of the request.

The addition of these deadlines is intended to ensure transferring students are placed in the proper academic courses when entering a new school and that they do not miss opportunities for academic growth at their new school.

Expanded Educational Record for Students in Foster Care

Existing law establishes procedures for the transfer of foster care students between schools including the transfer of the student’s educational records.  SB 532 now requires the educational records of transferring foster care students to include a determination of days of enrollment or seat time, or both if applicable, and an official transcript with full and partial credits earned, or any measure of full or partial coursework being satisfactorily completed.  This bill expands what constitutes a complete educational record for transferring students in foster care and assists in ensuring that students will get full credit for the coursework they completed at their prior school. 

If you have any questions about SB 532, please contact the author of this Client News Brief or an attorney at one of our eight offices located statewide.  You can also subscribe to our podcast, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn or download our mobile app.

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As the information contained herein is necessarily general, its application to a particular set of facts and circumstances may vary. For this reason, this News Brief does not constitute legal advice. We recommend that you consult with your counsel prior to acting on the information contained herein.