CLA Enrollment Policy
In accordance with Section 59-40-50 of the South Carolina Code of Laws, Title 59, Chapter 40, CLA will admit all students eligible to attend ninth through twelfth grades residing in South Carolina, subject to space limitations. If the number of applicants exceeds the capacity of a program, class, grade level or building, the students will be accepted by lot, as specified in federal and state guidelines.
CLA will not limit, deny admission, or show preference to any individual or group of individuals except where allowed by law. CLA will recruit, register, and admit students without regard to race, creed, gender, national origin, ancestry, disability, immigrant status, English speaking status or need for disability services. CLA will market to all communities to ensure that the student body is representative of the Greater Horry County Area. Because CLA is sponsored through the Charter Institute at Limestone, there will be no limitations based on the student’s home district.
Enrollment into CLA is a two-step process, first a lottery application must be completed and if drawn for a seat in the lottery, the student moves to step two of completing the enrollment packet. A completed lottery application is required for submission prior to the open enrollment deadline whether via online or hardcopy. The lottery application asks only contact information from student and parent, sending school, birthdate, current grade and how the parent and student heard about CLA. No questions identifying any protected class will be requested until the student has been offered a seat at CLA through the enrollment packet. No fees are required to apply for the lottery. Post lottery applicants must follow the timeline deadlines to ensure students do not loose their seat.
Deadlines are as follows:
- Once notified a seat at CLA has been extended through the lottery parents have two weeks to accept or decline said seat. If no response is received the parent is notified the offer is retracted and the student will move to the bottom of the waiting list. The seat will then be offered to the first student on the waiting list.
- If the seat is accepted an enrollment packet is sent to the parent who has 30 days to submit to the school with accompanying documentation. If the packet is not returned within the 30 days and no extension has been requested the seat is retracted and the student will be moved to the bottom of the waiting list. The seat will be given to the first student on the waiting list.
- If no waiting list exist CLA will continue to accept students on a first come first served based until capacity has been reached
South Carolina law provides that priority status may be given to a sibling or siblings of a student currently enrolled or of a student that has attended the school within the last six years. Priority can also be given to children of charter school employees and founding charter school committee members but not to exceed 20% of enrollment. Siblings are exempted from the 20% limitation. CLA will honor these special circumstances for priority in the event a lottery is required.
Completed Enrollment packets and fees paid are required to fulfill the enrollment process. CLA will make every effort to work with parents including giving an extension to gather the required documentation but must be mindful that as a school enrollment is what drives the school financial stability so every seat must be filled. Students who qualify for pupils in poverty status are eligible for a reduction or exemption from school fees based on their status.
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Should CLA deny admission for a reason other than the results of a lottery, an appeal to the CLA Board may be made within five business days. The appeal must be made in writing and must state the grounds on which the appeal is based. If the parent is not satisfied with the decision of the CLA Board the parent has five days from notification of the decision to appeal to the Charter Institute at Limestone.
CLA Enrollment Procedures
- In order to ensure the integrity of the enrollment process, CLA will follow the following procedures:
- At initial contact with the parent the registrar explains the process to them
- Parent/guardian fills out an online application after which the registrar gets an email notification and it automatically puts information on a lottery spreadsheet
- OR, if parent is physically present in the school and wants a paper application one is provided although for better tracking purposes, the registrar will encourage an online application
- Once the registrar receives the application, the registrar prints it, physically writes the date and time on it (it is timestamped on the spreadsheet just not when it is printed)
- Parents receive an automatic reply via email once the lottery application is submitted. The registrar changes this reply according to the time of year, i.e., before lottery, after lottery, etc. Deadline for applications is the last day of February.
- If the number of applications exceeds the number of seats available a lottery will be held.
- A public lottery is held at the school the first week of March. Actual date is advertised on the school website
- Siblings of current students or former students within the last 6 years are given priority in the lottery
- Students of CLA employees are also given priority in the lottery
- Applicant names are written on an index card and put in a box
- A member of the board pulls a card, and the name and number are record until all names have been called
- Once all available spots are filled, the registrar places the remaining names on a waitlist
- The registrar then creates a spreadsheet and keeps track of any correspondence with any member of the family, any acceptances, rejections, waitlist, etc.
- The registrar also notes any correspondence on the printed application itself
- Families are given two weeks to notify the school whether or not they accept the offered seat. If yes, then they receive an enrollment packet to be returned to the school within 30 days, once the registrar receive the enrollment packet and required items (birth certificate, immunization records, proof of enrollment) the registrar uses the checklist created to keep track of all data (see attached Data Entry Checklist)
- If the application is received after the lottery
- The registrar will contact the parent to confirm the grade level and if a waiting list exist place the student at the end of the list. If no waiting list exist the parent is directed to proceed with completing the enrollment packet which is available online or give them the option receive a paper copy available at the school.
- Once the school receives the enrollment packet the registrar contacts the transferring school to get preliminary (unofficial) records such as, transcript, Quick Look Up page, and discipline/incident reports, sometimes but not always the sending school will send IEP/504 documents. The registrar should do this to make sure that the student has not been expelled or to ensure that any discipline/suspensions have been served
- If the registrar receives any preliminary reports, the registrar always shares the information with the Principal and Dean of Students, if the registrar receives an IEP/504 the registrar shares this with the Coordinator of Special Education and/or the MTSS Coordinator.
- The registrar highlights any special needs; allergies, medical alerts, any ESOL, special education needs, parent/guardian issues, etc. and shares this information with the appropriate staff member
- The registrar then starts the Data Entry Checklist
- The registrar requests official records
- The registrar also lets the SPED Coordinator know if a parent has indicated the child has an IEP/504. This is done on a separate shared google doc.
- Once records are received
- Everything is checked off on the checklist
- Copy of transcript is given to the Dean of Students
- Copy of the IEP/504 is given to the SPED Coordinator
- Copy of HLS or any ESOL records are given to ESOL Coordinator
- The registrar then enters a student in PS
- Once the student has been entered in PS, the registrar then enters any courses/grades listed on the incoming transcript into Historical Grades
- If anything is missing from the checklist, the registrar contacts the former school or parent and keeps the file as incomplete.
- If everything is in order, the registrar then files it in a locked file cabinet.