Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Watch Live


San Diego Unified School Choice Deadline Approaches

Students are shown at Franklin Elementary School working in class on Feb. 11, 2015.
Matthew Bowler
Students are shown at Franklin Elementary School working in class on Feb. 11, 2015.

Even though it's not yet spring time, parents are thinking about next fall’s first day of school.

But, for some parents, that means not sending children to their neighborhood school. San Diego Unified’s School Choice Program provides students with the opportunity to attend a school other than their neighborhood school. Students may apply to any school within the district. The deadline for School Choice Program is Sunday, Feb. 15. The district offers an online application.

This district also offers magnet schools, which are programs designed to attract students by offering unique opportunities for in-depth studies in specific areas of study.


Magdalena Tavasci is principal of Franklin Elementary, a popular magnet school.

“Some schools, more than others, it's harder to get in, because they’re very well established with their magnet status, and there are waiting lists,” Tavasci said.

Franklin is a S.T.E.A.M. — Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math — magnet school. Tafaschi said parents choose her school for more than just the subject matter.

“The academics, yes, is big on people's minds. But, I think if you put everything together, it's about the feel of a school,” Tavasci said.

Tavasci said that parents of students who choose a magnet school expect more from the school and their children.


“They are the kind of parents that are looking for something unique in education," Tavasci said. "They look at magnets, because magnet schools are very unique.”

Each of San Diego County’s 42 school districts admit students into its schools in its own way. For example, Sweetwater Union High School District lets students transfer into any of its schools at any point in time if there’s a spot open. Whereas, Cajon Valley Union School District officially accepts applications from Jan. 15 to March 1, but you can apply after the deadline and hope a spot opens up.

However, parents can always register students at their neighborhood schools at any time.