Schools of Choice Concept
All local school districts within the Mecosta-Osceola Intermediate School District (MOISD), including Big Rapids Public Schools, participate in a Schools of Choice plan. This includes the districts of Reed City, Evart, Chippewa Hills, and Morley Stanwood. Big Rapids Public Schools also participates in the section 105c Schools of Choice plan, which addresses students residing in any school district located within a intermediate school district that is contiguous to the MOISD borders.
Each school year, districts must decide whether they will accept non-resident students under the section 105 and 105c plans. The districts then publish the grades, schools, and special programs where they have space available for non-resident students. For the five districts in the MOISD, the intermediate office collects this information and will be publishing it in the local newspaper in July. If there is a limited number of openings for non-resident students and the district receives more applicants than it has openings, a random draw lottery system will be conducted to determine those non-resident students who have been suspended or expelled from other districts may be turned down.
The receiving district is not required to provide transportation for non-resident students. Furthermore, the regulations set forth in section 105c state that before a student receiving special education services can enroll, the district of residence and the receiving district must have an agreement in place stating which district will be responsible for the added cost of these special education services. Non-resident applicants who live in the same household will receive preference over other applicants and schools of choice students must meet the same criteria as residence students to be accepted for enrollment in a grade or specialized program. In addition, Michigan High School Athletic Association rules and regulations apply to all students wishing to participate in interscholastic athletics. Under the MHSAA transfer rule, unless residency is established, high school students who transfer through schools of choice from one high school to another are not eligible to participate in interscholastic athletics for one full semester.