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EAChung

18 Year Old Transfer Student too old to enroll in High School in California

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I would very much like some advice on this situation.  I work in education overseas - Europe.  One of our outstanding students is moving with her family because her mother has now been employed in California.  The family has visited the office in the San Mateo school district.  School here starts at the age of 7. The young woman turned 18 in May.  She would be entering her senior year of high school in Europe.  We assumed that she would just transfer for her senior year at a California public school.  Excellent grades, excellent English language skills.  However, the family was told that because the daughter had turned 18 in May that she would not be eligible to attend high school.  Instead she would need to attend an adult education program. I was quite stunned to hear this.  Any information or advice on this matter would be greatly appreciated.  I have never run into anything like this, so I am a bit shaken up and am trying to help the family resolve this situation.  Thanks to anyone who has an answer. 

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That would be the policy of the specific school district. There is nothing in the law of California that prohibits an 18 year old from enrolling in high school. While 18 is the maximum age for which school is mandatory, it is not the maximum age to attend school.

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She's not a transfer because she is coming from another country, she would be consider a new enrollment and they generally don't newly enroll 18 year olds.  Once the family has established residency in the district along with all prior school records, they can try again but the school district may insist that she attend the adult school.  There's also the option of on-line schooling in CA now. 

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I'm slightly surprised as it is not unusual for a senior to start their senior year at 18. Still, an adult ed program would still get her a diploma. She will have to ask what that means as far as attending classes. Many adult ed programs are in the evening as the clientele is considerably older than 18 and often work during the day.

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