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Decision Number
Joseph Steven McGrath
Tricia McGrath
Iowa High School Athletic Association
Full Text

Joseph will be a sophomore during the 2003-04 school year. He and his family moved from Missouri into the Mason City Community School District during the summer. They choose to rent a rural residence located approximately one mile from the boundary of the Clear Lake Community School District. The family intends to build a new home on an acreage owned by her parents in a few years. After deciding to rent an acreage in the Mason City District, Joseph's parents filed for open enrollment.

The applications for Joseph and his younger sister were approved. During the hearing, Appellant testified that the family has continued to search for suitable housing within the Clear Lake District to no avail. Appellant argued that this transfer was not an open enrollment transfer because Joseph never enrolled in or attended school in the Mason City District.

To accept the argument would mean that open enrollment was available only to those students who actually had been enrolled in or attended school in their resident districts. This is contrary to the Open Enrollment statute that makes the process available to many students who would not have been enrolled in or attended their resident district.

This is clearly an open enrollment transfer. All of the exceptions were mandated by the Iowa General Assembly in Iowa Code 282.18(13). This agency has no authority to create any additional exceptions. Joseph is allowed by the rules to practice with the team and enjoy the camaraderie of his teammates. He may be with the team on the sidelines during a game and may even contribute to the team effort, as for example, a statistician. He may not compete, however, with or for his teammates during interscholastic competitions for the first 90 consecutive school days.

That the June 14, 2003, decision of the Board of Control of the Iowa High School Athletic Association, declaring Joseph Steven McGrath ineligible to compete in interscholastic athletics at the Clear Lake Community School District for a period of 90 consecutive school days was affirmed.