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Decision No. 14,397

Appeal of ALMA C. DE LA TORRE, on behalf of STEPHANIE VELEZ and JUAN PABLO VELEZ, from action of the Board of Education of the Islip Union Free School District regarding residency.

Decision No. 14,397

(June 27, 2000)

Ingerman Smith, LLP, attorneys for respondent, Neil Block, Esq., of counsel

MILLS, Commissioner.--Petitioner appeals, on behalf of her children, from a determination by the Board of Education of the Islip Union Free School District ("respondent") that her children are not district residents and may not attend school in the district without the payment of tuition. The appeal must be dismissed.

Petitioner previously resided at 22 Birch Street in respondent's district where her children attended school. Petitioner and her husband separated and, in April 1999, petitioner moved to 38 Howell Road in the Bay Shore Union Free School District. Petitioner's children live with her at the 38 Howell Road address, but have continued attending school in respondent's district.

Pursuant to 8 NYCRR 100.2(y), respondent's superintendent of schools determined that petitioner and her children no longer resided in respondent's district and, therefore, her children could no longer attend respondent's schools. Petitioner appeals that determination and requests that her children be permitted to "finish out the school year" in the Islip Union Free School District. By letter dated January 19, 2000 respondent's superintendent notified petitioner that her children would be permitted to continue to attend school in respondent's district pending a determination of this appeal.

Petitioner does not dispute that she and her children no longer reside in respondent's school district. In her petition, petitioner indicates that her lease at 38 Howell Street in the Bay Shore Union Free School District expired in April 2000, and she is not certain where she would next reside. Petitioner states that she does not wish to "uproot" her children from the Islip Union Free School District and move them to another school district until she decides where she finally will reside. She seeks a determination that her children are residents of respondent's school district so that they may complete the 1999-2000 school year in respondent's school district.

The appeal must be dismissed as moot. It is well settled that the Commissioner of Education will only consider matters in actual controversy and will not render a decision on a state of facts which no longer exists or which subsequent events have laid to rest (Appeal of a Student with a Disability, 38 Ed Dept Rep 91, Decision No. 13,990; Appeal of Lascala, 38 id. 17, Decision No. 13,974). In her appeal, petitioner admits she no longer resides in respondent's school district but requests that her children be permitted to finish the 1999-2000 school year in respondent's school district. In accordance with the January 19, 2000 letter from respondent's superintendent of schools, petitioner's children were permitted to continue to attend school in respondent's school district for the remainder of this school year. Thus, petitioner obtained the relief she sought. As the school year has ended, no further relief need be granted, and the matter is moot.

THE APPEAL IS DISMISSED.

END OF FILE