School of Choice


Notice: School of Choice (SOC)

Parents/guardians of students may apply for School of Choice (SOC) to attend a school outside of their designated attendance area. This process is outlined in district policy JCA/JFBB-R. Students who reside within the designated attendance area for the school shall have priority. When there is space available in a grade level and/or program the established procedures for SOC can allow access for other students to attend the school.

Except as otherwise stated below, priority among applicants will be determined by the time stamp/date of application on a space available, first come, first served basis.

  1. An applicant who attends a public school that is required to implement a turnaround plan pursuant to C.R.S. 22-11-406 or that is subject to restructuring pursuant to C.R.S. 22-11-210 shall have priority over any other applicant for the School of Choice process.
  2. A resident student who applies for School of Choice that has a parent who is a staff member at the choice school or who has a sibling already attending the choice school shall have priority over other applicants (other than the scenario cited immediately above).
  3. Resident students shall be given priority over nonresidents of the District.

Procedures for applying for the School of Choice Option are as follows:

  1. The School of Choice Application will be available starting at 10:00 a.m. on January 12, 2024, and will be accepted until 4:00 p.m. on January 26, 2024. The application is available in electronic form only and is available at the District’s website at

  2. Applications will be done through ParentVue. If you do not have a ParentVue account please create one prior to January 12, 2023. If you have questions, please contact your school.

  3. Complete the application and make sure to submit it when finished. Applications will be time stamped upon submission of the electronic form, not when the form is opened.

  4. All students wishing to attend a different school other than the one that is assigned to them according to their residence must submit a School of Choice application, unless the student is continuing in the same school in which a School of Choice was granted last year and space is still available.

  5. If you do not have access to the internet, please go to the Emerson Building at 930 Ute Avenue, 2nd floor anytime between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, or your child’s school office.

  6. Parents will be notified of their acceptance or denied status on January 31, 2024 via email.

    • Parents must submit their notice of acceptance by February 7, 2024 in order to attend the school that was requested.

For a listing of schools and programs that are NOT part of the school of choice process, refer to the School of Choice FAQ document.

If you have questions regarding School of Choice, please call the Office of Site Leadership and Support at (970) 254-5311.

PLEASE NOTE: Transportation will NOT be provided for students who live outside of the attendance area and attend school under School of Choice.

School of Choice (SOC) FAQs

Although the Board of Education has endorsed a neighborhood school concept based upon structured attendance areas, it recognizes that students residing outside the District may desire to enroll in District schools and programs and that resident students may desire to attend a school or participate in a school program located in an area other than that of their assigned school. In conformity with policy JCA/JFBB, parents/guardians of nonresident students may apply for enrollment of their children in a District school or school program and parents/guardians of resident students may apply for their children to attend a school or school program outside their assigned attendance area if such application is made during the application window known as School of Choice. Resident students must register in the school serving their attendance area even though a request is pending for School of Choice or transfer to another school. Nonresidents of the District must register in the school they seek to attend once they are accepted through the School of Choice process.

Which school is my homeschool or school of residence?

  • Type your address in the school locator to determine the three schools associated with your address (elementary, middle and high).

When should someone apply for School of Choice:

  • SOC is open for a two week period of time, and acceptance is valid for the following school year.

  • Dates for this process will be posted on the district website, shared with media outlets and on district social media pages prior to the start of the SOC process. Information will be made available to families already enrolled in the district via email.

Who should apply for School of Choice?

  • All families who wish to attend a school that is different from the school that is considered their home school or school of residence?

Which schools or programs are not part of the SOC process?

  • Lottery schools: Dual Immersion Academy and New Emerson. Application deadlines and information are posted on their websites.

  • Charter schools associated with District 51: Independence Academy, Juniper Ridge, Mesa Valley Community School. Application and registration processes are set by these schools.

  • School programs that require an eligibility requirement are: STEM, PTech at Central High School, International Baccalaureate (IB) at Palisade High School, PTech at Grand Junction High School, and Challenge Program at Orchard Mesa Middle School.

Who should not apply for SOC?

  • If your child was approved previously for SOC at the same school you are applying to.

    • If you are unsure if your child is approved with a transfer request instead of a school of choice application, contact your child’s school. Transfer requests are valid for one year only.
  • If your child lives in the attendance area of the school you are applying to.

What is different between the School of Choice and the Transfer process?

  • Both application processes allow for a student to attend a different school than the one that is considered their home school or school of residence.


    • The main difference is that a transfer only allows a student to attend a different school for the remainder of the year in which the application was approved.

    • Transfers can have criteria stipulating good attendance, and behavior as part of the acceptance which also means they can be revoked.

    • Parents whose children are attending a school through a transfer request are encouraged to apply for School of Choice in order to continue at that same school.

    School of Choice:

    • Approved applications for School of Choice will grant attendance at the receiving school or program throughout the grades served by the school unless space is no longer available.