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How Does Your School District Handle Residency Fraud?

LakeWashingtonLakeWashington Registered User Posts: 9,315 Senior Member
On the one hand, I have empathy for families trying to escape mediocre schools. On the other hand, taxpayers expect their resources to be used for their own kids and not those from neighboring towns. And I don't like people who rationalize cheating; especially when they can afford private school tuition or religious school tuition.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dc-politics/secret-probe-points-to-widespread-enrollment-fraud-at-acclaimed-dc-high-school/2018/02/27/e20d2684-1b33-11e8-b2d9-08e748f892c0_story.html?utm_term=.515a271b3091
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Replies to: How Does Your School District Handle Residency Fraud?

  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 76,598 Senior Member
    Are the schools in VA and MD near DC seen as "undesirable" by many parents and students?
  • LakeWashingtonLakeWashington Registered User Posts: 9,315 Senior Member
    edited February 2018
    Reportedly, Duke Ellington School of the Arts is a highly regarded public high school. It would be interesting to know if any NOVA parents attend Duke Ellington in D.C. STEM students in NOVA have the option of T. Jefferson H.S. (if they can get in), but would any NOVA performing arts students like to attend Duke Ellington School of the Arts? According to the news article, about 100 parents [families] of D.E. students pay tuition at 12K a pop. The rest, of course, are D.C. residents who pay no tuition.
  • MaterSMaterS Registered User Posts: 1,846 Senior Member
    It is not uncommon in my area for parents to rent an apartment in a desirable school district for the high school years. High schools require residency verification for every year of attendance not just Freshman year.
  • MassmommMassmomm Registered User Posts: 3,894 Senior Member
    This is a complicated issue for certain districts in the Boston area. There is a program, METCO, that allows inner city kids to apply and be bused out to high-performing suburban schools. Parents whose kids are in the program have to be seriously committed, and the receiving communities have to find families willing to host kids for a few hours on early release days until the late bus can bring them back to the city. So you have kids whose parents are not paying taxes in the community being educated there.

    And then you have parents lying about where they live so that their kids can go to school in, say, Lexington or Winchester. It doesn't seem fair that they would benefit when they don't pay the high taxes people must pay to live in those communities, but they could probably argue (and have done so, when caught) that the METCO kids don't, either.
  • ccprofandmomof2ccprofandmomof2 Registered User Posts: 480 Member
    Our "good" public schools in the area tend to look the other way when the donations are big, and kick out kids the week before final exams when donations are not. Sorry, but I'm jaded by the politics of so-called public schools where the inequities and corruption that I've witnessed first-hand is far worse than the private schools I know.
  • tutumom2001tutumom2001 Registered User Posts: 1,185 Senior Member
    It's rampant here. I don't know what percentage of parents lie, but it sure seems like a lot. Parents use the addresses of relatives. If they own a business in a desirable district, they'll use that address. People "rent" rooms from friends or have their names put on their utility bills. They'll rent houses in desirable areas and then sublet them. They'll rent an apartment for a month and then move.
  • fendrockfendrock Registered User Posts: 3,188 Senior Member
    I live in the Boston area and don't consider METCO to have any bearing on this situation.

    METCO is an effort to provide low income inner city kids with the kind of education that is only available in the high income suburbs.

    Of course it is not fair that only a limited number of low income kids can benefit from the program, but it is a legal means to obtain a better education.
  • romanigypsyeyesromanigypsyeyes Registered User Posts: 33,922 Senior Member
    Our district is school of choice so outside students can enroll and bring their tax money with them.
  • adlgeladlgel Registered User Posts: 793 Member
    Our district submitted a bill for the cost of education to a family that their investigation had shown was living out of the district while attending our school
  • alwaysamomalwaysamom Registered User Posts: 12,435 Senior Member
    This is a good reason that educational funding shouldn't be primarily tied to local taxes.
  • HamurtleHamurtle Registered User Posts: 2,173 Senior Member
    edited February 2018
    Pretty prevalent in Silicon Valley. It was quite common at Lynbrook and Monta Vista a few years ago. I would imagine the same would be true for Gunn, Paly, and Saratoga.

    The rule is that the student must be resident for 4 and a half days a school week in the address on record. Some districts have hired private investigators to check. There might be some leeway if the student is a joint custody minor with 2 different addresses.
  • VeryHappyVeryHappy Registered User Posts: 18,571 Senior Member
    Our town did the same thing as @adigel mentioned in #9.
  • rhododendronrhododendron Registered User Posts: 320 Member
    I suspected that one of my kids' high school friends was not living in our town. She would wave vaguely in the direction of some apartments when asked where she lived but always wanted a ride to a sandwich shop instead of to her home. I chose not to ask any questions that might lead to knowing exactly what was going on. I suppose that made me somewhat complicit in whatever was happening.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 76,598 Senior Member
    Wouldn't be surprised if districts' willingness to enforce were based on how close they were to target enrollment, given the existing facilities and staffing levels. I.e. if they are underenrolled, they may not be too aggressive in enforcement (because an extra student brings some state money in while filling space that would otherwise be wasted) compared to if they are filled to capacity or overflowing.
  • TooOld4SchoolTooOld4School Registered User Posts: 3,295 Senior Member
    Sounds like a good argument for vouchers and school choice. At least it would be above board.
This discussion has been closed.