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Transfer Student Question and Answer

The transfer student question and answer document contains information pertaining to transfer students in New York State.  A transfer student is a student who enters a New York State school from another state, another country, or another New York State school.

New York State Transfer Credit regulations (Commissioner's Regulations Part 100.5[d][5]) provide information about transfer students.  NYSED's Transfer Students webpage contains additional information. 

Questions regarding transfer students can be directed to the Office of Curriculum and Instruction at (518) 474-5922 or emscurric@nysed.gov.  

Credits (Evaluating, Awarding, Requirements)

C1. Who evaluates and grants transfer credit for students enrolling in a New York State school? 

The principal, in consultation with relevant faculty, evaluates the transcript or other records of a transfer student enrolling in a New York State school and awards the appropriate units of transfer credit. 

Transfer credit must be awarded if credit was previously awarded by any registered New York State high school

Transfer credit may be awarded if  the work completed at other educational or cultural institutions is deemed to be consistent with the New York State commencement level learning standards and is of comparable scope and quality to that which would have been done in the school awarding credit.

C2. Who evaluates and grants transfer credit for students previously receiving home instruction, now enrolled in a New York State school?

The principal, in consultation with relevant faculty, evaluates the Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP) and other records and awards the appropriate units of transfer credit.  Transfer credit may be awarded if the home instruction included work consistent with the New York State commencement level learning standards and of comparable scope and quality to that which would have been done in the school awarding credit.

C3. When a student transfers from one registered New York State high school to another registered New York State high school, must the receiving high school accept all the high school credits earned by the student? 

Yes. The principal must grant transfer credit for all credit awarded by any registered New York State high school.

C4. Can a student earn transfer credit for work done at other educational or cultural institutions and for work done through independent study? 

The principal, after consulting with relevant faculty, may award transfer credit for work done at other educational and cultural institutions and for work done through independent study. The decision should be based on whether the student’s record indicates that the work is consistent with New York State commencement level learning standards and is of comparable scope and quality to that which would have been completed in the school awarding the credit. 

C5. To receive a Regents diploma or a Regents diploma with advanced designation, must students who transfer to a New York State school meet the same unit of credit requirements in a language other than English (LOTE) as other students? 

Yes.  Any student wishing to earn a Regents diploma or a Regents with Advanced Designation must meet the same unit of credit requirements as other students.  This includes at least 1 unit of credit in LOTE unless they are exempt from LOTE on their IEP.  Additional information on earning diploma credit in LOTE can be found in the LOTE Frequently Asked Questions.

C6. Is a transfer student who is exempt from the one diploma credit in LOTE also exempt from the LOTE sequence required for advanced designation?

Yes.  Any student who is exempt from the one diploma credit in LOTE is also exempt from the sequence requirement for advanced designation.  A LOTE exempt student who seeks a Regents diploma with advanced designation does NOT have to complete the 5-unit sequence in the Arts or CTE in lieu of LOTE in order to meet the assessment requirements for the advanced diploma.

C7. To receive a Regents diploma with advanced designation, do transfer students need to achieve three units of credit in LOTE and take and pass a locally developed Checkpoint B examination in LOTE  if they have a five-unit sequence in either career and technical education (CTE) or the arts? 

No.  Students may choose a 3 unit sequence in LOTE and the Checkpoint B exam  or they may opt for a five-unit sequence in either career and technical education (CTE) or the arts.  Regardless of the selection, all students are required to achieve at least one unit of credit in LOTE unless they are exempt from a language other than English on their IEP.  Any student who is exempt from the diploma credit in LOTE is also exempt from the sequence requirement for advanced designation.

C8. Must students transferring in grades 11 or 12 , wishing to  meet the Regents diploma with advanced designation, and choosing a sequence in LOTE, earn all 3 units of LOTE credit in the same language? 

A student transferring between high schools in grade 11 or 12 may be exempt from the second language requirements of three units of credit in a single  language for a Regents diploma with advanced designation, if the language in which the student began a second language sequence in grade 9 or 10 is not offered in the school to which the student has transferred. In such cases, the student must complete three units of credit in second languages, but not necessarily in a single language.

Assessment Requirements / Exemptions

A1. Are students who enroll in high school after being on home instruction in New York State eligible for any assessment exemptions?

No. Out-of-state transfer assessment exemptions do not apply to students instructed in New York State.  This includes students who received home instruction in New York State, as well as students  who were enrolled in a registered or non-registered public or nonpublic New York State high school.

A2. If a transfer student was granted an appeal to graduate with a lower score on a Regents exam, does the receiving high school have to accept the appeal?

Yes. Since the appeals process, review, and decision were made in the sending district, the receiving district must accept that determination.

A3. What are the assessment requirements for students who transfer between New York State high schools? 

Students who transfer between high schools in New York State must meet the same assessment requirements as other students enrolled in the receiving high school.  When students transfer from NYS schools that do not administer Regents exams, they are still required to fulfill all the assessment requirements to earn a local or Regents diploma.  There are not any assessment exemptions for in-state transfers.

A4. May Department-Approved Alternative Examinations be used in place of Regents examinations when reviewing a transfer student’s record? 

Yes.  A current list of all  Department-Approved Alternative Examinations Acceptable for Meeting Requirements for a Local or Regents Diploma is available on the Office of State Assessment website.

A5. Must transfer students who are exempt from taking certain State assessments have their transcript and permanent records annotated? 

Yes.  The manner in which exemptions are annotated is locally decided, but exemptions should be noted on students’ transcripts and permanent records.

Out-of-State Transfer Students

O1. What are the assessment requirements for out-of-state transfer students who enter grade 9 or grade 10 in a New York State school for the first time? 

Transfer students who enter a New York State high school for the first time in grade 9 or grade 10 must meet  all assessment requirements applicable to the diploma they wish to receive .  There are no assessment exemptions for students entering in grades 9 or 10.

O2. What are the assessment requirements for an out-of-state transfer student who enters a New York State high school for the first time in grade 11 in or who re-enters a New York State high school in grade 11 after spending 3 or fewer semesters in a New York State high school, and who wishes to receive a Regents or local diploma? 

To receive a Regents or local diploma, grade 11 out-of-state transfer students must pass the Regents examination or the Department approved alternative examination  in English, U.S. History and Government, one mathematics, and one science.  The principal may exempt the student from the requirement to pass a Regents Examination in Global History and Geography. In this situation, the student need not pass an additional +1 pathway assessment.

O3. What are the assessment requirements for an out-of-state transfer student who enters a New York State high school for the first time in grade 12 or who re-enters a New York State high school in grade 12 after spending 3 or fewer semesters in a New York State high school, and who wishes to receive a Regents or local diploma? 

To receive a Regents or local diploma, grade 12 out-of-state transfer students must pass a Regents examination. or the Department approved alternative in English, U.S. History and Government, and one mathematics.  The principal may exempt the student from the requirement for the Regents examination in science and the Regents examination in Global History and Geography. In this situation, the student needs only to pass 3 examinations for a Regents or local diploma.  

O4. Are out-of-state transfer students who utilize transfer assessment exemptions eligible for appeals to graduate with a lower score on a Regents exam? 

Yes.  Transfer students using exemptions are still eligible to appeal to graduate with a lower score on a Regents examination.

O5. If an out-of-state transfer student, entering for the first time in grade 11 after spending 3 or fewer semesters in a New York State high school, desires to earn a Regents diploma with advanced designation, what exams would the student need to pass?

An out-of-state transfer student entering in grade 11 would need to pass the following assessments (Regents examinations or Department-Approved Alternatives) to earn a Regents diploma with advanced designation:

  • English
  • U.S. History
  • 2 Science (one life, one physical)
  • 3 Mathematics

Such students would still need to complete all credit requirements and a sequence in CTE, the Arts, or LOTE with a locally developed Checkpoint B exam.

O6. If an out-of-state transfer student, entering for the first time in grade 12 after spending 3 or fewer semesters in a New York State high school, desires to earn a Regents diploma with advanced designation, what exams would the student need to pass?

An out-of-state transfer student entering in grade 12 would need to pass the following assessments (Regents examinations or Department-Approved Alternatives) to earn a Regents diploma with advanced designation:

  • English
  • U.S. History
  • 2 Science (one life, one physical)*
  • 3 Mathematics

Such students would still need to complete all credit requirements and a sequence in CTE, the Arts, or LOTE with a locally developed Checkpoint B exam.

*Note, students entering a New York State high school for the first time in grade 12, would still need to pass two science assessments.  For additional information, reference NY-CRR 8 §100.5(b)(7)(v), Earning a Regents diploma with advanced designation.

O7. May out-of-state transfer students who transfer to a New York State school for the first time in grades 11  or 12, and have either one or two Regents examination(s) waived, receive an honors endorsement?   

Yes.   The requirements to receive a high school diploma with honors remain the same, except with a fewer number of required Regents examinations. 

O8. Does a student who transfers to a New York State high school after spending 1 or more semesters in an out-of-state high school need to earn 2 credits in Physical Education to meet the diploma requirements? 

Students who enter a New York State high school from outside the state must enroll in Physical Education for every semester they are in a New York State high school and must earn 1/4 credit for each semester they are enrolled in the New York State school.

Transfer Students Receiving Special Education Services

SE1. What are the requirements for transfer students with disabilities who have individualized education programs (IEPs) and who transfer within New York State, according to Commissioner’s Regulations Section 200.4(e)(8)? 

If a student with a disability and an individualized education program  (IEP) in effect in New York State transfers from one school district to another in the State in the same school year, the new school district must provide, in consultation with the student’s parents, services comparable to those described in the IEP from the previous school.  That IEP will remain in effect until a new IEP that is consistent with Federal and State law and regulations is developed and implemented.   

SE2. What are the requirements for transfer students with disabilities who have IEPs who transfer from outside New York State, according to Commissioner’s Regulations Section 200.4(e)(8)? 

If a student with a disability had an IEP that was in effect in another State transfers to a New York State school within the same school year, the new school district must provide, in consultation with the student’s parents, services comparable to those described in the IEP from the previous school.  That IEP will remain in effect until a new IEP that is consistent with Federal and State law and regulation is developed and implemented.

SE3. What are the requirements for obtaining records for transfer students with disabilities who have IEPs? 

The new school district in which the student enrolls must take reasonable steps to obtain the student’s records promptly from the previous school.  These records include the IEP, supporting documents and any other records relating to the provision of special education services to the student from the previous school.  (34 C.F.R. section 99.31(a)(2), Code of Federal Regulations, 2009 edition, Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Stop SSOP, Washington, DC 20402- 0001: 2009 – available at the Office of Counsel, New York State Education Department, State Education Building Room 148, 89 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12234). 

SE4. If a student with a disability has been declassified or has a 504 Accommodation Plan and the student's last IEP or 504 Plan has documented the availability of testing accommodations or safety net options, do these recommendations apply when the student transfers to a new school district?

Yes. These recommendations would continue if the student transfers to a new school district unless the new district revises the last IEP or 504 Plan.

SE5. If a student with a disability has an IEP which indicates exemption from the LOTE requirement for graduation, does this exemption apply when the student transfers to a new school district? 

Yes.  The student would be exempt from the LOTE requirement when the student transfers to a new school district if, prior to transferring, the Committee on Special Education (CSE) determined that the student's disability adversely affects the ability to learn a language and and has recommended that the student be excused from the LOTE requirement for graduation.  This action must be documented on the student’s IEP.  The exemption would continue when the student transfers to a new school district unless the new district develops, adopts, and implements a new IEP.