Bellingham Public Schools has 22 outstanding schools and a variety of special programs to meet the needs of our families and students. We are confident that our families, students and staff make strong connections and build meaningful community, regardless of which school they attend.

Requests for both in-district (attendance area) and non-resident (out of district) transfers can be submitted any time, but priority is given to requests received between Feb. 15 and March 1 for the following school year.

Factors we consider when making a decision about a transfer request include: a financial, educational, safety or health condition affecting the student; proximity to a parent’s place of work or childcare; whether a parent/guardian is a district employee; other special circumstances.

What should families be aware of when requesting a transfer?

  • Requests are approved based on space and capacity in a school or program.
  • Families are responsible for their own transportation for transferred students.
  • Transfer requests are reevaluated every year, and placement is not guaranteed.
  • Because we need to evaluate enrollment numbers prior to accepting new transfers, we may not be able to provide a response to a request until right before or even right after the start of the school year.

Timeline

Our priority window for transfer requests is Feb. 15, 2021 through March 1, 2021. Applications submitted during this time period may receive a response as early as May 1. Kindergarten, sixth and ninth grade requests may not know acceptance status until mid-August or up to the fifth day of school.

Attendance Area Transfers

If you reside within Bellingham Public Schools but would like to transfer to a different school within the school district, please fill out the electronic Request for Student Attendance Area Transfer Form 3131.

  • If this is a new request, after you submit your transfer form, you can expect to have a conversation with the principal of your neighborhood school before your request to transfer is considered for approval. If you need a paper form or help filling out the online form, please contact your neighborhood school.
  • If this is a renewal of an existing approved transfer, your requested school will process your request. If you need a paper form or help filling out the online form, please contact the school your child attends.

Whether you are submitting a new request or a renewal, these forms must be submitted each year. If you have a question about this form contact your school office. You can also refer to our transfer  FAQ.

Non-resident Transfers

Pursuant to Policy 3141, any Washington State student who resides outside the boundaries of Bellingham Public Schools, may apply to attend school in Bellingham Public Schools. Non-resident acceptance into the district is for one academic year only. All non-resident students are inactive at the end of each academic year. Families must re-submit a transfer request form each year for continued enrollment in Bellingham Public Schools. Please follow the steps below to apply.

For students to transfer from their resident district into Bellingham Public Schools.

  1. Apply for release from your school district of residence through theWashington State Choice Transfer Request Portal. When you use this portal, your resident school district is notified of your transfer request.
  2. If you are unable to access the state’s online portal, please email Nancy Schubeck in the department of Teaching and Learning for assistance or call (360) 676-2787
  3. Fill out Non-Resident Transfer Request 3141 and submit to your desired school within Bellingham Public Schools.
  4. Collect required documents for your child(ren) and include with your transfer request. Please note: your non-resident transfer request will be considered once all the required documents are included.
  • Current attendance and discipline reports from the resident district for the school year
  • Current report card or transcript from the resident district for the school year
  • If student is receiving special education services, current Individual Education Plan (IEP) and Special Education Addendum (SPA), if applicable.

New Request or Renewal? Indicate “New Request” if the student has not attended the requested school before. Indicate “Renewal” if the student has attended the requested school. For example, If a student has attended a Bellingham Public Schools elementary their entire student career but are requesting to attend a BPS middle school the transfer would be a new request.

 For students to transfer out of Bellingham Public Schools into a different district. This could be an online school.

  1. Apply online via the Washington State Choice Transfer Request Portal. When you use this portal, your resident school district is notified of your transfer request.
  2. If you are unable to access the state’s online portal, please email Nancy Schubeck in the department of Teaching and Learning for assistance or call (360) 676-2787
  3. Submit a Non-Resident Transfer Request Form and any other required records to the desired district, following that district’s guidelines. It may be the same as or similar to the version used by Bellingham Public Schools, found here. 

For students to enroll part-time with Bellingham Public Schools and part-time with another district.

  1. Apply online via the Washington State Choice Transfer Request Portal. When you use this portal, your resident school district is notified of your request.
  2. If you are unable to access the state’s online portal, please email Nancy Schubeck in the department of Teaching and Learning for assistance or call (360) 676-2787 or use 3140F-2 FTE Interdistrict Agreement and return by mail to: Bellingham Public Schools, 1306 Dupont St. Bellingham, WA 98225

Non-resident Transfers (choice)

Nancy Schubeck

Exec. Admin. Assistant

In-district Transfers (attendance area)

Polly Johnson

Exec. Admin. Assistant