Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program (AEP)
Georgia's Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program began as a state grant funded program in 1994 and was known as the Crossroads alternative education program. With the passage of the A+ Education Reform Act of 2000, Crossroads grants were eliminated and Quality Basic Education (QBE) funds began providing for the Alternative Education Program for students in grades 6-12. Effective May 2010, the State Board of Education adopted the name, Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program (AEP).
Georgia's Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program is designed to provide some program flexibility at the local level. Local school systems must provide a disciplinary alternative education program. Local school systems may collaborate with other districts, Regional Educational Service Agencies (RESAs) or contract with an external vendor to provide services to disruptive students.
A local school system may provide the following:
An attendance recovery program
A choice alternative education program
A community-based alternative education program
A credit recovery program
Other alternative education program models that otherwise meet the requirements of the State Board of Education Rule 160-4-8-.12 Alternative/Non-traditional Education Programs.
Additionally, the local alternative education program may function as a single-system or multi-system program and may be located on or off a regular school campus.
Alternative Education Programs
Each LEA shall ensure that all Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program(s)/School(s) only provide curriculum aligned to Common Core Georgia Performance Standards (CCGPS). Curriculum may be delivered through computer assisted instruction and online courses.
Each LEA shall ensure that all Alternative/Non-traditional Education Programs/Schools provide counseling services to enable the student to make academic progress.
Each LEA shall ensure that all Alternative/Non-traditional Education Programs/Schools operate in full compliance with federal and state laws and State Board Rules governing special education students and students with special needs.
For students in grades 9-12, each LEA may award course credit based on the student's demonstrated competency on course examination(s) for course work completed while enrolled in the Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program/School in lieu of the 150/135 clock hours of instruction as required by SBOE rules. Each Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program/School shall adhere to all instructional time requirements for all other grades.
For students in grades 9-12, each LEA may determine the length of time students will be in classes in the Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program(s)/School(s) in lieu of the requirement of as specified in SBOE Rule 160-5-1- .02. Each Alternative/Non-traditional Education Program/School shall adhere to all instructional time requirements for all other grades.
School systems must provide their alternative education programs with the same instructional materials, resources, and textbooks as provided to the traditional program. Adherence to all requirements as stated in State Board of Education Rule 160-4-8-.17 Case Management Consultation for Agency Placed Transfer Students is required.
Magnet schools offer a wide range of distinctive education programs. Some emphasize academic subjects, such as:
- Language immersion
- Visual and performing arts
According to the United States Department of Education, “…the term ‘magnet school' means a public elementary school, public secondary school, public elementary education center, or public secondary education center that offers a special curriculum capable of attracting substantial numbers of students of different racial backgrounds.”