Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: How are we different than Missoula County Public Schools?

A: Missoula County Public Schools is a public school district. Our office is a county government office of an elected official.


Q: Who has authority over the school districts?

A: The Board of Trustees of each district sets policies. The Montana State Office of Public Instruction approves a school's accreditation status.


Q: How many school districts are in Missoula County?

A: Thirteen.   See our list of School Administrators.


Q: How many students are enrolled in Missoula County school districts?

A: For the 2019 academic year, we have a total enrollment of 14,218 students. 


Q:  Sunset School, in school year 2011-12, had only one child enrolled and the school stayed open.  Why would a school stay open with only one student attending?

A. Example:  If Sunset School closed, the district would be absorbed by either Potomac or Seeley Lake and taxpayers would be paying significantly more than what they pay now per $100,000 of residential property. See the matrix below:


                  Mills (FY11/12)          $ tax/$100,000 value             Relative difference
Sunset         51.47                          $81.48

Potomac      130.04                        $205.86                            130.04/51.47=2.53 or 253%
Seeley         112.04                        $177.36                            112.04/51.47=2.18 or 218%


Q: How can your child attend a different school district?

A: Call the district of choice and ask if they take out-of-district students. If the answer is yes, be aware that there may be a tuition charge.


Q: What's the difference between school districts and attendance areas?

A: Attendance areas are boundaries located inside a large school district; e.g. MCPS, District 1


Q: How can I find out what school district my children will attend?

A: Call our office at (406) 258-4860.  

If you think you may reside within the boundaries of MCPS District #1, search by Home Address using the Attendance Locator, click here.

Search using County's Property Information System, click here.


Q: Why doesn't the bus come to my house?

A: By law a school district is only obligated to transport students who live three or more miles from the school.


Q: What are some links to other areas of education in Montana?

A: Here are some websites that may be of some importance to anyone interested in education in Montana.