Nearly 19,000 students assigned to Charlotte area magnet programs through first lottery

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Nearly 19,000 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students were assigned to magnet programs during the first student-assignment lottery. Families will begin receiving notification late this week. The letters inform parents of the school their child was placed in through the lottery process and how to ask for reassignment.

Frequently asked questions:

How many families participated in the lottery?
CMS received more than 8,000 individual lottery applications through the online process and a total of 18,791 students were assigned to a magnet school. That includes students who were already assigned to magnet schools and automatically continue in those programs. Click here to see the list of magnet programs by school, the number of seats filled, and the number of students in the wait pools.

The three schools with the largest wait pools are: Morehead STEM Academy (624 students), Piedmont IB Middle (345 students) and Park Road Montessori (300 students).

Why didn’t my child get any of their choices?
Placement through the lottery is not guaranteed. Some magnet programs have far more applicants than seats available. Students who do not receive their first choice for a magnet program are automatically placed in that program’s wait pool.

How does the wait pool work?
Right now, 3,547 students are assigned to magnet-school wait pools. When more students apply to magnet programs than there are available seats, the lottery establishes a wait pool made up of the remaining first-choice applicants. Schools can access their wait pools in July. If a seat becomes available, the school will contact the next person in the wait pool and offer them a seat. Students may accept or decline the placement. The school will continue to contact students until all available seats are filled.

What should I do if I’m not happy with my child’s assignment?
Families who are not happy with their child’s placement have two options: request reassignment or apply to a magnet school with space (open-seat option). The reassignment period is open until March 23. Families should fill out the request online.
Requests are considered for four reasons:
• The student wishes to attend his/her home school (placement is guaranteed)
• Child of CMS staff member (placement is not guaranteed)
• Student’s medical and/or health condition (families must complete the CMS medical packet)
• Extreme hardship, which are circumstances that affect a family’s ability to support the student’s educational success. Hardship requests require a written explanation and supporting documents.

Families with students enrolled for the 2012-2013 school year can also participate in the second magnet lottery, which runs from March 14-June 4. The second lottery is an opportunity for families to fill seats that are still available in magnet programs. Instruction letters on how to apply for the second lottery will mail in mid-March and placement notification letters will mail in June.

Additional information on student placement and the magnet lottery are online. For specific information on student placement, families can contact 980-343-5335. For specific information on the CMS magnet program, contact 980-343-5030.

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