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Transitioning students from preschool to kindergarten, elementary to middle school, and middle school to high school
The promotion process is a system that the Special Education Department uses to help move students from preschool to kindergarten, elementary school to middle school, and middle school to high school.
The district wants to support you and your student in making a smooth transition. The IEP team, which includes the parents and student (if appropriate), makes the placement decision. Discussions about placement for the following school year usually begin in January.
Promotion process procedures may differ between schools. It is a good idea to review the following information with your student's Individual Education Plan (IEP) Manager.
Steps and Timeline of Promotion Process
Schedule for placement discussions, decision making, and introduction to new school
Discussions about placement for the following school year begin
Contact the student’s present school if you haven’t been invited to a meeting to discuss next year’s placement. This meeting can happen outside of an IEP meeting, but the placement decision may then be reflected in a change of the IEP. This discussion should include issues such as:
- School your student will attend
- Program they will be in
- Classes your student will take
- New IEP manager
- IEP support
Current IEP team meets with new IEP team
The IEP team at your student’s present school meets with the school for the next year to share information about your student. Parents are not part of this meeting, as they have already been part of the placement meeting in January.
Members of the IEP team from the new school may observe your student at their present school.
Once the school placement decision is made, fill out any necessary registration information for the new school. Your student’s IEP team can help you get these forms.
Student's file sent to new school's IEP team.
Transportation Department contacts parents
LWSD is responsible for transportation if the student attends their home school or if the IEP team decides on placement at another school. Special transportation needs should be reflected on the IEP. The Transportation Department will contact you about your student’s bus route one week before school begins. Contact Transportation at 425-936-1120 if you haven’t heard from them by then.
Introducing you and your student to the new school
Each school handles orientation in its own way. Contact your student’s IEP manager or your student's new school to find out when their Open House will be held. Contact the school to arrange for a visit at a different time if you feel it would be less stressful for your student.
Variances and Choice Schools
Considering placement in other schools
Work with your student’s IEP team to decide if transferring to a school other than the assigned school would be a good placement for your student. You must apply for a variance in order to transfer your student to a different school within the district if this school differs from the IEP team recommendation.
Choice schools are schooling alternatives within the Lake Washington School District that put emphasis on specific educational interests and needs. If your student is accepted into a choice school, no variance is required. Be aware that choice schools don’t always have special education staff on site. Work with your student's IEP team to decide if a choice school would be appropriate for your student. Visit the Choice School web page to learn about the various options, how to apply to choice schools, and to find contact information for each school.
A variance or Choice School attendance may require you to provide your own transportation.