§ 115C-218.45. Admission requirements.
(a) Any child who is qualified under the laws of this State for admission to a public school is qualified for admission to a charter school.
(b) No local board of education shall require any student enrolled in the local school administrative unit to attend a charter school.
(c) Admission to a charter school shall not be determined according to the school attendance area in which a student resides, except that any local school administrative unit in which a public school converts to a charter school shall give admission preference to students who reside within the former attendance area of that school.
(d) Admission to a charter school shall not be determined according to the local school administrative unit in which a student resides.
(d1) A student who is not a domiciliary of the State shall be permitted to register to enroll in a charter school or participate in a lottery for admission to a charter school within the State by remote means, including electronic means, prior to commencement of the student's residency in the State if all of the following apply:
(1) A parent or legal guardian is on active military duty and is transferred or pending transfer pursuant to an official military order to a military installation or reservation in the State.
(2) Upon request by the charter school where the student seeks to register to enroll or participate in a lottery for admission, a parent or legal guardian provides a copy of the official military order transferring to a military installation or reservation located in the State.
(3) A parent or legal guardian completes and submits the charter school's required enrollment forms and documentation, except that proof of residency and documentation related to disciplinary actions pursuant to subsection (i) of this section shall not be required until the student transfers into the State, at which time they shall be required prior to commencing attendance.
A charter school shall make available to a student who registers to enroll or who participates in a lottery pursuant to this subsection the same opportunities available to a student enrolled or participating in a lottery contemporaneously with domicilia in the State, such as registering for courses and applying for programs that require additional request or application. A student enrolled pursuant to this subsection may not attend the charter school until proof of residency is provided in accordance with the requirements of the charter school. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to curtail a charter school's authority pursuant to subsection (i) of this section.
(e) Except as otherwise provided by law or the mission of the school as set out in the charter, the school shall not limit admission to students on the basis of intellectual ability, measures of achievement or aptitude, athletic ability, or disability. A charter school shall not limit admission to students on the basis of race, creed, national origin, religion, or ancestry. A charter school whose mission is single-sex education may limit admission on the basis of sex. Within one year after the charter school begins operation, the charter school shall make efforts for the population of the school to reasonably reflect the racial and ethnic composition of the general population residing within the local school administrative unit in which the school is located or the racial and ethnic composition of the special population that the school seeks to serve residing within the local school administrative unit in which the school is located. The school shall be subject to any court-ordered desegregation plan in effect for the local school administrative unit.
(f) The charter school may give enrollment priority to any of the following:
(1) Siblings of currently enrolled students who were admitted to the charter school in a previous year. For the purposes of this section, the term "siblings" includes any of the following who reside in the same household: half siblings, stepsiblings, and children residing in a family foster home.
(1a) Siblings who apply to the charter school for admission beginning in the same school year, such as when a sibling was not initially admitted due to grade level capacity.
(2) Siblings of students who have completed the highest grade level offered by that school and who were enrolled in at least four grade levels offered by the charter school or, if less than four grades are offered, in the maximum number of grades offered by the charter school.
(2a) A student who was enrolled in a preschool program operated by the charter school in the prior year.
(3) Limited to no more than fifteen percent (15%) of the school's total enrollment, unless granted a waiver by the State Board of Education, the following:
a. Children or grandchildren of persons (i) employed full time by the charter school or (ii) working full time in the daily operation of the charter school, including children of persons employed by an education management organization or charter management organization for the charter school.
b. Children or grandchildren of the charter school's board of directors.
(4) A student who was enrolled in the charter school within the two previous school years but left the school (i) to participate in an academic study abroad program or a competitive admission residential program or (ii) because of the vocational opportunities of the student's parent.
(5) A student who was enrolled in another charter school in the State in the previous school year that does not offer the student's next grade level.
(6) A student who was enrolled in another charter school in the State in the previous school year that does not offer the student's next grade level and both of the charter schools have an enrollment articulation agreement to accept students or are governed by the same board of directors.
(7) A student who was enrolled in another charter school in the State in the previous school year.
(g) Lottery procedures for siblings:
(1) If siblings apply for admission to a charter school and a lottery is needed under subsection (h) of this section, the charter school may enter one surname into the lottery to represent all of the siblings applying at the same time. If that surname of the siblings is selected, then all of the siblings shall be admitted to the extent that space is available and does not exceed the grade level capacity.
(2) If multiple birth siblings apply for admission to a charter school and a lottery is needed under subsection (h) of this section, the charter school shall enter one surname into the lottery to represent all of the multiple birth siblings applying at the same time. If that surname of the multiple birth siblings is selected, then all of the multiple birth siblings shall be admitted.
(g1) If a procedure for a weighted lottery reflecting the mission of the school has been approved by the State Board as part of the charter, and a lottery is needed under subsection (h) of this section, the lottery shall be conducted according to the procedure in the charter.
(h) During each period of enrollment, the charter school shall enroll an eligible student who submits a timely application, unless the number of applications exceeds the capacity of a program, class, grade level, or building. In this case, students shall be accepted by lot. Once enrolled, students are not required to reapply in subsequent enrollment periods.
(i) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, a charter school may refuse admission to any student who has been expelled or suspended from a public school under G.S. 115C-390.5 through G.S. 115C-390.11 until the period of suspension or expulsion has expired. (1995 (Reg. Sess., 1996), c. 731, s. 2; 1997-430, s. 5; 1997-443, s. 8.19; 1997-456, s. 55.4; 1998-212, s. 9.14A(a); 1999-243, s. 8; 2001-462, s. 1; 2004-118, s. 3; 2004-203, s. 45(b); 2006-69, s. 3(e); 2006-137, s. 2; 2007-59, s. 2; 2007-126, s. 2; 2007-323, s. 28.22A(o); 2007-345, s. 12; 2009-239, s. 1; 2009-563, s. 2; 2010-10, s. 2(a); 2011-93, s. 2(a); 2011-145, s. 7.29(b); 2011-164, s. 4; 2011-282, s. 9; 2012-142, ss. 7A.1(f), 7A.3(c), 7A.11(b); 2012-145, s. 2.5; 2012-179, s. 1(c); 2013-307, s. 1.1; 2013-355, s. 1(f); 2013-359, s. 1; 2013-360, ss. 8.43(a), 9.7(q); 2014-101, ss. 4, 4.5, 7; 2015-248, s. 3(b), (c); 2016-79, s. 1.5; 2017-173, ss. 4, 5(b); 2018-5, s. 7.18(a); 2020-78, s. 2.3(a); 2022-71, s. 2.3(a).)