If you are placed at a school that is inappropriate, ask your guidance counselor to file an appeal or file one yourself with the office of student enrollment. You can pick up an appeal form at the district or enrollment offices. While the initial placements are made by computer, human beings handle the appeals. Your guidance counselor may write a letter explaining why you need a different placement: get her on your side.
Reasons for an appeal You'll have the most luck with the following reasons:
- Change of address (new address at least 90 minutes distance from school)
- Lack of appropriate special education services or accommodations at the matched school
- Lack of appropriate language instruction (for students learning English)
- Desire to attend one of the new small high schools (if the school's formation was announced after the official application process)
There is also a category for "other" appeals and you'll get a chance to explain why you want another school. This is the place to bring up anything that was missing from your first application, such as a big leap in your grades or a mistake in the application. If the school to which you were assigned does not have a college-preparatory curriculum, that may be grounds for appeal as well.