Demand for DC Public Charter Schools Remains High
For Immediate Release: April 8, 2015
Contact: Tomeika Bowden 202-328-5543
Washington, D.C. —Demand for public charter school education continues to rise as evidenced by the waitlist analysis released today by the DC Public Charter School Board. Overall, there are 8,526 individual students on waitlists to attend one or more participating public charter school in the upcoming school year, an 18% increase over last year’s 7,205 students.
PCSB released this analysis based on data from My School DC on the first round of the public and public charter school lottery. Results from My School DC’s second round of the lottery will be released after Round 2 results become available on May 29.
Applicants to schools on MySchoolDC rank their desired schools by preference. Students are placed on waitlists only for schools that they ranked higher than the school to which they were offered admission.
“We are providing this information in order to assist those parents with children who are not matched with their top choice to see which schools have shorter waitlists or no waitlists at all,” said Darren Woodruff, Chair of PCSB. “Parents can find this information at data.dcpcsb.org"
As in previous years, the biggest demand is for the early grades. According to the data, there is a waitlist of more than 9,000 names for a space in grades PK3 through kindergarten. Because many students are on multiple waiting lists, the more than 9,000 names represent an unknown number of duplicates. (View school-by-school information, by grade).
“These waitlist numbers are yet another indicator that there is significant demand for quality schools in the District,” said Scott Pearson, Executive Director of PCSB. “We look forward to working with school leaders and community members to create more quality options for the thousands of students on charter waitlists and the thousands more moving into the District each year.”
In the last two years, PCSB has approved six new public charter schools and expanded more than a dozen schools rated “Tier 1” on the School Quality Reports. This includes allowing the replication to a second campus for Two Rivers Public Charter School, which has the longest waiting list of any public charter school in the District.
PCSB is currently considering five new charter applications as part of its regular application cycle. A Twitter Town Hall will be held tonight at 5:30 p.m to discuss these applications. Tweet questions to @dcpcsb using #AskPCSB.
Of the 112 public charter school campuses in the District, 96 participate in My School DC, with most of the non-participating schools focused on adult or alternative education or offering highly specialized programs such as boarding.