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Open Enrollment Transportation Assistance


The transportation reimbursement for the 2016-2017 school year for open-enrolled families that qualify according to income guidelines is $480.  Transportation assistance is only available to families that open enroll between contiguous districts. The cost of transportation reimbursement incurred by the resident district should be deducted from the tuition sent to the receiving district for a student who is open-enrolled.  For students with an individualized education program (IEP) requiring transportation, resident district pays as special education cost and is not deducted from the actual tuition costs.  If the application for transportation assistance is filed after the beginning of the school year, the cost of providing the transportation should be pro-rated.

If a parent/guardian qualifies for school transportation assistance, the resident district has the authority to determine how the transportation assistance will be provided.  The type of transportation assistance is not a parent/guardian choice.  The resident district may meet its statutory obligation in one of three ways:

  1. The resident district may provide transportation for the pupil(s) to a stop on the bus line of the receiving district.
  2. The resident district may allow the receiving district to enter the resident district to pick up the pupil(s) if the receiving district requests this arrangement. If either the sending or receiving district does not approve the arrangement, the resident district is still obligated to provide transportation assistance.
  3. The resident district may provide a parent/guardian with a cash reimbursement at $480 per child per year for up to four children per family.  The maximum number of children can include only one secondary child and up to three elementary children.

The amount of open enrollment tuition for the 2017-2018 school year for a regular education student is $6,591, which is the State cost-per-pupil from the previous fiscal year.  For a student served pursuant to an IEP, open enrollment tuition is calculated on actual costs of special education rather than the prior year's State cost-per-pupil amount.  Open enrollment tuition is billed and paid on a quarterly basis.  Under special circumstances that terminate or suspend open enrollment status, it is necessary to prorate tuition in a quarter on a per diem basis.

For more information about this including the income guidelines, see the 2016-17 Open Enrollment Handbook on the Open Enrollment webpage.

For additional information, contact Eric Heitz, 515-281-4726.


Printed from the Iowa Department of Education website on November 18, 2017 at 9:25am.