Neighborhood School Transfer Options

Everything you need to know about student transfers!

Atlanta Public Schools (APS) and the state of Georgia supports the concept of neighborhood schools and community involvement. During the 2012-2013 school year, APS began operating according to a cluster model. APS uses the cluster model to build alignment and collaboration across schools that feed into a neighborhood high school. All students will have access to music, arts, foreign language and core academic programs that are high quality and well-coordinated from kindergarten through Grade 12.

APS allows families (residents and non-residents) to transfer to an APS school using one of four transfer varieties: School Choice, Children of APS Employees, Mid-Year Transfer, and Hardship Transfer.

For more information on each type of transfer, select the transfer type below.

Transfer Types

General Administrative Transfers (School Choice)

Application Window: March 7 - March 25

Residents interested in attending an APS school, but live outside of the city of Atlanta, may attend if space is available, and pay non-resident tuition. For current non-resident tuition rates, contact the Office of Student Assignment and Records via email at or via phone at 404-802-2233.

APS offers two types of School Choice transfers:

  1. General Administrative Transfers – permits students to attend an out-of-zone school until the highest grade of school.

  2. Georgia Special Needs Scholarship Transfers – permits eligible special education students to request a transfer to another APS school on the basis of special needs.

School Choice Transfer Dashboard: Click Here

Georgia Special Needs Scholarship

Application Window: March 7 - March 25

To newly qualify for the Georgia Special Needs Scholarship Program for the upcoming school year a student must meet ALL the following requirements:

  • Student Eligibility Criteria 1- A student have must a parent/guardian who currently lives in Georgia and has been a resident for at least one calendar year.

  • Student Eligibility Criteria 2- A student was enrolled and completed the 2021 – 2022 school year in a Georgia public school in grades kindergarten through twelfth.

  • Student Eligibility Criteria 3- A student was reported as attending a Georgia public school by a school district(s) during mandatory student counts conducted in October 2021 and March 2022.

  • Student Eligibility Criteria 4 - A student does not need to have an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for the entire school year to qualify for the GSNS Program. A student must have received special education services at some point during the 2021 – 2022 school year through an IEP. A student must be reported by a school district(s) in either the October 2021 OR March 2022 student counts OR in final student record as a student receiving special education services by the end of the 2021 – 2022​​​ school ye​ar.

At the end of the school year, school systems update student records for students served by an IEP after the March count to reflect that they are special education students. By mid-July the database for the scholarship calculator is updated to include these students.

If a student meets the eligibility criteria for the GSNS Program; a parent/guardian has the right to request a transfer from a student’s current public school to:

  • Another public school within their district of residence; or

  • Another public school district outside their district of residence; or

  • One of the three state schools for the blind or deaf; or

  • A private school authorized to participate in the GSNS Program. Funds received through the GSNS Program can only be used to pay for tuition and fees at a private school authorized by the State Board of Education to participate in the program.

Funds cannot be used to pay the costs of out of district tuition, charter schools, or other options available under public school choice. ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Children of Employee

Application Window: Rolling admissions for the 2021-22SY

APS board policy and regulation offers children of full-time APS employees (custodial parents or legal guardians with whom a child lives) the choice of attending an APS school. Temporary (including part-time) and substitute employees are not eligible. Out-of-district tuition is waived for full-time employees residing outside of the city of Atlanta.

APS offers two types of transfer options for children of employees:

  1. General Administrative Transfers – permits students to attend an out-of-zone school until the highest grade of the school.

    1. Full-time employees (non-residents of the city of Atlanta) who are not requesting a transfer for their child to attend school at their worksite, are required to apply through the general administrative transfer process.

    2. APS employees (1) who are transferring their child into APS after the transfer application window, (2) who are newly employed by the district, or (3) who are enrolling their students after the beginning of the new school year are eligible to request a general administrative transfer to any school that had unfilled spaces at the conclusion of the random lottery.

  2. Students of Employees Worksite Transfers – permits full-time employees assigned to a school worksite to apply for their child to attend school at the same worksite.

Student of Employee Worksite Transfer Application: Click Here

Hardship Transfer

Application Window: May 30 - June 10, 2022

Hardship transfer applications are accepted annually each June. Applications received after the annual application window, will be accepted on a case-by-case basis. Applications without supporting documentation will not be considered.

Hardship transfers are permitted based on definitions described in the board policy manual; a few of these scenarios are listed below. For more information, visit the Atlanta Board of Education policy, Student Assignment to Schools – Student Transfers, JBCCA-R(2) Board Policy Manual §1.4.

Hardship transfers may be granted due to:

  • Death of parent or legal guardian

  • Military parent deployment

  • Services unavailable at zoned school

  • Court order

  • Medical reasons

  • Curriculum continuity

  • Dual Immersion Program

  • Siblings

  • Other

Grievances arising from parent-school conflicts, discipline and/or attendance problems, and general dissatisfaction with a school are not considered hardships. Parents experiencing these situations should refer to the Parent/Guardian Concerns, Complaints, & Issues protocol found in the APS Student Handbook.

Parents also have the right to request a transfer to another school during the annual School Choice application window.

Hardship Transfer Application: Click Here

Transfer to Continue Enrollment

Application Window: Whenever a move has occurred.

A Transfer to Continue Enrollment Application may be requested from the Office of Student Assignment & Records whenever a change in residence has occurred and the parent is requesting the student to continues enrollment at the same school.

Students Who Move During the School Year

When a family informs the school that they have moved out of the school zone, the following rules apply:

Students who move from one school attendance zone to another during the school year may continue to attend the APS school of origin for the remainder of the semester in which they moved. No APS transportation will be provided.

Students who are in transition grade levels 5, 8, 11 and 12 may remain in the school through the end of the year. Students who move after they have accumulated enough credits to be promoted to grade 11 may continue to attend the APS high school of origin until graduation. No APS transportation will be provided.

If a student wishes to remain at the school after this semester, the parent must secure an approved transfer from the Office of Student Assignment (please refer to Policy JBCCA and associated regulations). Midyear transfers shall be granted to students for the purpose of maintaining academic stability if space is available in the school. No APS transportation will be provided. Students must maintain regular and timely attendance to remain enrolled. The parent/guardian must apply for a school choice transfer during the transfer window in the spring to remain in the school for the following academic year.

Students Who Move Out of the City of Atlanta During the School Year

If a family moves out of the city, out-of-district tuition will not be required for the remainder of the semester. If the family wishes for their student(s) to continue enrollment in the APS school beyond the semester, they must secure an approved transfer and pay out-of-district tuition unless the family is homeless or has a documented hardship.

Student Athletics

Student athletic eligibility may be impacted by an approved out-of-zone transfer. For additional information regarding student athletic eligibility, click here.