Can Students Still Attend Some School After Expulsion?

Schools after expulsion

Last Updated on August 20, 2021 by Michelle Ball

By Michelle Ball, Sacramento California Expulsion, Special Education, sports/CIF, College, Education and School Attorney/Lawyer for Students since 1995

No one likes to think about school expulsions or their child getting kicked out of school.  But what if the very worst happens?  What if a student expulsion from the school district actually occurs? Where will the student attend school?

Post-Expulsion School Attendance Rights

A student who is expelled, unless an exception is made in the expulsion decision and/or agreement, may not attend any school within the district from which the student was expelled.  

But, the student is still are entitled to an education.  Per California Education Code section 48915(d), a student who is expelled shall be referred to a program of study which meets the following conditions:

(1)  Is appropriately prepared to accommodate pupils who exhibit discipline problems.
(2)  Is not provided at a comprehensive middle, junior, or senior high school, or at any elementary school.
(3)  Is not housed at the schoolsite attended by the pupil at the time of suspension.

Continuation School Placement

What this law translates to post-expulsion, is usually a student move to a continuation school.  If the school district has their own continuation school set up, the student is shuffled there.  If the district does not, the students are usually referred to the county continuation school.  These are not the places most parents usually want a student to attend, but they do work for some students in the right circumstances.  

The reason continuation schools may be perceived as unsavory is, ironically, the fact that all the expelled (aka “bad”) students attend these schools. Most parents do not envision their children as one of “those bad kids” even after they are expelled.

Attendance At Designated School Not Usually Mandatory

One good thing- usually the student’s attendance at the assigned school is not mandatory (verify with your district), so a parent may attempt to enroll the student in another district, a charter school, a private school, or an on-line school.

Often an on-line school may be the only option, but the others may be worth a shot as well.  When applying, a parent must tell the new school they are trying to enter of the expulsion.  However, they can still attempt to persuade the school to admit the student.  A parent or attorney letter explaining the situation, how it was flawed, etc. may be helpful.

Rather than take a shot at the student expulsion hearing, and risk a bad placement, parents should do everything they can to fight before a school expulsion happens. Expulsions are a big deal- don’t chance it.

Michelle Ball is an expulsion defense lawyer for students, and can help across the state of California, in Roseville, Auburn, Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and anywhere within California as an education attorney for students.

[originally published July 5, 2011]