The 2016-17 Magnet Application Highlights

The 2016-17 Magnet Application Highlights
by Tanya Anton | GoMamamGuide.com

Hey LAUSD Residents: With just under three weeks left, it’s time to get your Magnet applications in!

What’s a Magnet?

Magnet programs are court-ordered voluntary integration programs that provide a diverse, enriched, theme-based educational environment for lucky lottery winners. With 210 magnet programs throughout LAUSD, there are lots of specialized school opportunities to apply to, with transportation provided if you qualify.

Additionally, since it’s based on a weighted lottery system, there are those confounded POINTS! If you’ve picked up one of my guidebooks or attended one of my talks, you should be well-versed in the ins and outs of magnet point collection and selection strategy: How to get in. How NOT to get in. How to maximize your options for future years.

(Confused? Don’t panic, I’ll walk you through it! Either by phone or my new step-by-step webinar!)

In any case, between Oct 1st and Friday, November 13th, 2015 BEFORE 5p, LAUSD residents can apply online to the Magnet programs of their choosing for the following year. Visit echoices.lausd.net to apply. It’s paperless. It’s easy. And it’s free.

The Basics:

– Must be an LAUSD resident to be eligibleFalsified applications will be disqualified and removed from the program.

– No longer accepting late applications. But you can amend your online app up until the Nov 13th 5pm deadline.

– First round of Notification letters will go out by the end of March and will be sent via email if applied online. After that, additional admissions opportunities will be offered in the order of the wait list until all seats are full.

– If you “Don’t Answer” the call/email it’s still considered a pass – and you lose all accumulated wait list points.

– Students MAY be contacted with an opening up until the 4th week of school.(This DOES happen. The late notification.) Waitlist points will finalize after the 4th week of school if you haven’t gotten an offer.

So, let’s get those Magnet apps in!

The Highlights:

– You can select UP TO 3 MAGNET Choices on the application. Points will only attach to your 1st choice. (Optional 2nd and 3rd choices will be entered with 0 points.) If you aren’t selected in any of your choices during the initial automated lottery, you are placed back on the waitlist of only your 1st choice.

– You are not required to select 3 choices. If accepted to ANY magnet program at any point and turn it down, you will lose ALL accumulated waitlist points.

– Only submit ONE application per child. (Check with other parent to make sure you didn’t both apply.) Must be applying for the correct and appropriate grade for 2016. State Law governs age eligibility:  5 by Sept 1st for Kinder, 6 by Sept 1st for 1st Grade.

– You may change your selection(s) every year. The points follow the child.

– Student info (address, telephone, grade) MUST MATCH info at child’s current LAUSD school. Any changes of address must be made at your child’s LAUSD school of attendance before the application deadline to be considered for the assignment of priority points. It’s the Parents’/Guardians’ responsibility to verify student info.

– Twins are treated as individuals and require separate apps. There is a space to enter sibling info on each app. If only one gets in, sibling points will apply the following year.

– If currently attending a Magnet and wish to stay there…DO NOTHING! If you apply elsewhere and are selected into another magnet, you will be unceremoniously dropped from your current magnet program and auto-enrolled in the new one. (This has happened to folks trying to collect points while attending a magnet program. No! That’s what Matriculation points are for.)

– Gifted/High Ability and Highly Gifted applicants must provide verification AHEAD of the Nov 13 deadline. See: echoices.lausd.net/Magnet/GiftedCriteria.

If this seems overwhelming or you want to discuss strategy or how the points work, please contact me for a consultation. Or sign up for one of my upcoming Magnet Webinars HERE. I’m happy to help. Magnets are just one of many public school options.
– Tanya Anton | gomama@mac.com

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School Boundary Changes – It Can Happen

LAUSD RSI Map Shopping for a new home? Want to make sure you land in the right school footprint?

This is the time of year where there is a lot of real estate movement as families relocate in advance of the coming school year.

But before you commit to a new lease or escrow, make sure you double check the address by plugging it into the LAUSD Resident School Identifier to verify which specific elementary, middle, and high school it is assigned to. Realtors are not always accurate. You don’t want to buy on the wrong side of the street. And it’s true, from time to time, school boundaries do change. Just because you can “see” that lovely school down the road, doesn’t necessarily mean you automatically get to “attend” it.

First, let’s get the lingo right. Every local neighborhood school has a designated zone around it which admits area residents who reside within that boundary. Sometimes this “zone” is also called an “attendance area,” “footprint” or “encatchment.” To confuse parents even further, some folks also refer to this school boundary as a “district” or “local district” which in my opinion is an unfortunate choice of wording that only tends to confound parents even more in an already confounding arena of uncertainty and cloudiness.

The use of the word “District,” in my opinion, should be reserved for allocating which “school district” as in which city we are talking about, such as Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), or Santa Monica-Malibu United School District (SMMUSD) or Beverly Hills Unified School District (BHUSD) or Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD)…you get my drift. These are actual municipalities with their own collective of schools, governed and overseen by their own Local Education Agency (LEA), aka School District.

Because LAUSD is so large (2nd largest school district in the country under New York City), it is also organized by it’s own internal collection of “local districts” also known as Educational Service Centers divided geographically (ESC West, ESC North – which will be splitting into ESC NE and NW next year, ESC South and ESC East), so you see where the language, specifically the term “district” or “local district” can certainly get confusing.

(Magnets and charters and other types of school options do not typically come with attendance areas, so you will never be zoned to a magnet school or an indie charter. Caveat: there are exceptions to that last statement. But let’s press on. We’re talking about our local NEIGHBORHOOD schools. And their attendance areas. And more importantly, Boundary Changes.)

You should also know that occasionally local attendance areas can (and do) change.

Why? When the District determines they need to better balance enrollment in a specific area, they may move certain boundary lines to alleviate overcrowding in one school and fill available space in another nearby school.

Boundary changes, while infrequent in stable neighborhoods, can happen in response to shifts in demographics, population growth, urban development – think new high-rise multiple unit condo developments, the opening (or shuttering) of schools, and frankly what we’re seeing the most of – families that are either cramming into certain “hot” neighborhoods in order to attend the local “halo” school, opting out of certain “undesirable” neighborhood schools, or just generally being priced out of certain areas thereby prohibiting new families with young school-aged children from moving into the area. All of these neighborhood fluctuations – whether growing or declining – impact local school enrollments. Changing neighborhoods, changes in school performance and reputation, shifts in affordable real estate, not to mention the growing menu of school options that are NOT neighborhood schools (magnets, charters, language immersions, specialized academies), all directly impact neighborhood school enrollment.

Ivanhoe changesRecent population explosions in areas such as Carpenter and Colfax Elementary in Studio City, Ivanhoe Elementary on the Eastside, and the current debate raging at Westwood Charter Elementary in WLA (here and here) have angered residents who thought they had paid a premium just to live within a school’s footprint, only to find out that boundaries had or will likely change to accommodate the incoming swell of students. Conversely, while Santa Monica High School is at capacity, many of the Santa Monica elementary schools are actually under-enrolled due to the prohibitively high cost of buying even a condo, let alone a single-family starter home in that coveted Westside area.

Is there a way to avoid a local boundary change? Generally, this is out of parents’ domain and is determined by the Facilities Division of the local school district. If you are looking into real estate in order to attend a specific local school, my advice would be to land well within the center of the area, not on the periphery or outskirts of the attendance area. (Hard to predict, I know.)

If my local school boundary changes, is there a choice? It depends. In most cases, certain blocks along a perimeter will be re-assigned. Sometimes they will offer a phase-in reassignment for only the incoming new Kinders, then K-1 the following year, etc, until the phase-in is complete. Sometimes there will be a hard cut-off in the next year and all incoming new students of all grades will be impacted by the new boundaries. Younger siblings of existing students may also be impacted but will try to be accommodated on a space-available basis.

How do I know if my school boundary has changed? Check this LIST. If you’re not on the list, you are fine. If your school is on the list, click the link for more details.

The list is good for the upcoming school year. The new calendar year begins July 1st.

Links:
LAUSD Resident School Finder
The List of 2015-16 Boundary Changes
FAQ

Further reading:
Enrolling My Child In School – What I Need To Know

For HELP with school placement:
That’s what I’m here for.
PhoneIn-Home Consults 

Navigating LAUSD with Twins

(This is a re-print of an article I originally wrote for WLAPOM – The West LA Parents Of Multiples Organization.)
bksandapplesWhen it comes to schools, one thing we do have in Los Angeles – the second-largest school district in the country – is choice. While it’s tricky to understand all your public school application and lottery choices and their respective timelines, it can get even trickier navigating it with twins or multiples. Sometimes you actually have an advantage. Sometimes not so much. But the key to it all is understanding your options.
Here is a quick outline of how to navigate finding a public school with twins or multiples.
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Your Neighborhood School
Every address is zoned to a local elementary, middle and high school. This is your neighborhood school, your assigned school. Take the time to look it up, tour it, assess it, and talk to some of the current community involved. If you want this to be your family’s school, as long as can show proof of residence and get your enrollment papers submitted during “The Roundup” in the spring, (generally March-April), it’s a sure thing. Your neighborhood school will automatically accept all zoned residents, including multiples. Moving into the footprint of a great local school, if possible, is the ideal situation.
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Magnets
Magnet programs are voluntary integration programs that provide a diverse, enriched, theme-based educational environment for lucky lottery winners, with transportation provided if you qualify. This is also where that crazy weighted point system kicks in. If you’ve picked up one of my guidebooks or attended one of my talks, you should be well-versed in the ins and outs of point collection and strategy. The downside is that twins are treated as individuals. They both could get in, or only one might get in. If the latter happens, the second child would have to attend elsewhere until the following year when sibling points will almost assuredly get him/her into the program. But don’t let that dissuade you. There are plenty of twins who make it through the magnet system. Apply online at echoices.lausd.net Oct to mid-Nov for the following school year.
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Charters
LA has more students enrolled in charter schools than anywhere else in the country.
Independent Charters are free to design, implement and operate their schools apart from district and union policies, budgets and bureaucracy. Anyone from anywhere can apply to their open lotteries, (usually Jan/Feb), and the successful independent charters have long lists of applicants. But twins and siblings get special treatment: if one sibling gets in, typically all the other siblings get in too. This gives you multiple chances to win the lottery over “single” child applicants.
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Affiliated Converted Charters are district-union run hybrid charters with less autonomy than the independent charter, but maintain the original district building, facility and neighborhood attendance area. Usually 98.5% of incoming students are residents (those who reside within the school’s attendance area) who get first priority enrollment, but every year any remaining seats go up for lottery to non-resident applicants. Each school runs their own lottery (typically Feb/Mar) and most offer the “sibling advantage” – if one gets in, they all get in — but it will be space-dependent.
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In addition to the above possibilities, there are also LAUSD schools offering easy Open Enrollment, Schools for Advanced Studies (for Gifted students), Pilot schools, Language Immersion programs, Specialized Small Learning Academies (at secondary schools), and the possibility of transfers both within and out of the district to look into. In most cases schools prefer to keep families together rather than separated, however it will depend on the number of seats available and the order of being drawn if there is a lottery.
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For a color-coded map of public schools including magnets and charters by area, please visit my free Google mash-up maps at GoMamaGuide.com/schoolfinder. If this seems overwhelming and you want to discuss specific schools or strategy, we can always set up a consultation.

Enrolling My Child In School – What I Need To Know

EnrollmentJust relocated across town in order to get into a fancy new school footprint?

Enrolling your first child into Kindergarten and wondering what paperwork you’ll need?

Here’s how it will go down and what you need to gather before they just hand over your enrollment packet.

Note: This information applies to enrolling in your neighborhood public school. It will be a slightly different process to enroll in a charter, magnet, or specialized school such as a language immersion, although aside from the first step, much of the paperwork requirements will be similar. 

Also note that the more desirable (full) the school is, the more stringent you can expect the paperwork requirements to be. On the contrary, an under-enrolled school might be a little more lax about paperwork requirements for incoming students. Ok, let’s get started.

The first and biggest step is Proof of Residency 

You will need to bring a recent utility bill such as your DWP, Edison or Gas Co bill, (NOT a phone bill), showing your address lies within the attendance area of the school. Some schools, in addition to the utility bill, will also need to see a rental/lease agreement, escrow papers or homeowners property tax bill, or some other official US Government mail (IRS, Social Security, CA State tax) with the same residential address. Most schools need one or both of the above AND you will also need to show your CA Driver’s License that matches the address. Copies will be made and kept on file.

Having just renewed my drivers license and asked them this very question recently, by law you are required to update any change of residential address within 10 days of moving. Your drivers license should reflect your current residential address, not a mailing address. (I know many people don’t follow that rule, but that is the law.)

If you have just moved over the summer, get your driver’s license taken care of ASAP so you have no problem enrolling. For what it’s worth, my drivers license renewal came within about a week to 10 days of turning in the paperwork at the DMV.

You will also need to show Proof of Child’s Birthdate

In order to prove your child has met the state’s Kindergarten Age Requirement, you will need to present your child’s birth certificate, passport, or baptism certificate showing proof of age. CA state law requires your child must turn 5 by September 1 in order to enroll in Kindergarten that fall.

Once you pass those two hurdles, (Proof of Residence and Proof of Child’s Birthdate), you will be handed your enrollment packet. Thud.

paperwork I will not lie to you, for Kindergarten it is usually about a stack of forms 1″ thick, somewhat intimidating, with many different pages of requests for info and documents to sign. You will have until just before the start of school to get that baby turned in. (For LAUSD that is mid-August!) The earlier you do this, the better. Don’t wait until the day before school starts.

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What’s inside?

In the enrollment packet you will be asked for general family contact information, immunization records including dates administered, healthcare provider and insurance carrier info, other health history questions including developmental milestones (just do the best you can to fill in all the Qs), last dental visit info, home language survey, an emergency contact card – where you list relatives and who to call if they can’t reach you in an emergency situation, previous school enrollment info, release of records and transcripts if you are transferring into a grade higher than Kinder, a meal application to see if you qualify for free/reduced lunch, a blanket release authorization should your child be photographed and the district wants to use it, and likely the school’s bell schedule and events calendar will also be included.

You might also find additional requests for info from the PTA/PTO or Booster Club including parent liaison/room parent contacts, opportunities to join committees and such, opportunities for summer family meet ups, and a school roster info request. If the school is uber-organized, they may even start hitting you up for money for their annual giving campaign or invite you to upcoming fundraiser events.

Let me tell you, this pack of paperwork is not something you can just stand at the counter and fill out. You will definitely need to take all this home, gather the necessary information and fill it all out, then bring it back to the school office before the start of the school year.

Just a heads up, most school offices tend to open up about 2-3 weeks before the start of school, and will be shut down for most of July.

And, remember, you are not officially enrolled until you have submitted all your paperwork to the office and they have added you to their system.

If you’re looking ahead to next year, most neighborhood schools hold a “Kindergarten Roundup” sometime in early spring (late February to mid-March) where local residents meet the principal, hear a pitch about the school, some of the kids may perform or special projects are displayed prominently, and the parent organization extends the welcome wagon out to incoming neighborhood families. With proof of residency, you can pick up your enrollment packet right then and there and get started filling that out.

If you just moved into the neighborhood this summer, get on that enrollment packet asap.

Hope you found this helpful. Good luck!

It’s Charter Season!

Now that the Magnet deadline is fully behind us, it’s time to get your charter school applications in for next year. Each charter school is responsible for running their own admissions and application timelines, so be sure to check with the charter schools you are interested in to get all the specific details.

To learn more about what a charter school is, go HERE.
To learn more about affiliated conversion charters, go HERE.
To peruse my color-coded school finder maps, go HERE. (Charters are in green.)

For guidance on which charters are the best fit for your family, consider either an in-home of phone consultation with me, read more HERE.

Independent charters open their lotteries to anyone from any district. Affiliated conversion charters, an LAUSD hybrid type charter, gives first priority to those residing within the school’s attendance area with any remaining seats lotteried off to non-residents.

All charters give preference to siblings of existing students, and some charters offer other priorities, such as to founding families or staff members, students residing within LAUSD, or students qualifying for Free/Reduced Meal Plan (ie. low socio-economic status.)

Each lottery is independently operated and instituted by each individual charter school. Applications are handled directly with each school site. There are no points involved, thankfully. If you applied and were waitlisted last year, you need to reapply this year.

While not an exhaustive list by any means, here’s a quick list of some of the more popular charter tours, application deadlines and lottery dates around town. Most applications can be downloaded online on the school’s website, and either mailed or physically handed in to the school’s office.

Ok, here’s that (partial) list.

Select 2014 Elementary School Charter Deadlines:
(child must turn 5 by Sept 1, 2014 for entry into Kinder 2014)

Palisades Chtr Complex ELs (Canyon, Palisades, Kenter Cyn, Marquez, Topanga – all share same deadlines) — apps avail now in each office, deadline March 21 12p, lottery April 25 8:30a

Ocean Charter School (TK-8) — apps avail online now, deadline Jan 24,
lottery Feb 27 10a


WISH (DK-7) —  apps avail shortly, deadline March tbd, lottery March 28 8:30a
EL tours: Feb 19 9a, Mar 12 6p
www.wishcharter.org

Citizens of the World Charter/Mar Vista (TK-3) – apps avail online now, deadline March 3, lottery March 28 4p
tours: Jan 31 8:50a, Feb 12 7p
Citizens of the World Charter/Hollywood – apps avail online now, deadline March 3 4p, lottery March 24 4p
tours: Jan 28 6:15p, Feb 11 6:15p, Feb 20 9a
Citizens of the World Charter/Silver Lk – apps avail online now, deadline March 3 4p, lottery March 20 7:30p
tours: Feb 11 10:30a, Mar 4 6:30p
cwcsilverlake.org


Goethe
 — apps avail online now, deadline Feb 28,  lottery in March 18 6p
tours: Jan 30 9a
www.goethecharterschool.org

Larchmont Charter/Hollywood (K-12) & WeHo (K-8) — apps avail online now, deadline Feb 19 5p, lottery Mar 1 9a
www.larchmontcharter.org  and www.larchmontcharterweho.org

Los Feliz Charter Schl Arts (K-6) — apps avail online now, deadline Mar 4 12p (by mail/fax) lottery Mar 4
tours: Jan 21 5p, Feb 4 5p, Feb 18 5p
Valley Charter Schl EL — apps avail online now, deadline Feb 7 4p, lottery Feb 21 3:30p
tours: Jan 14 8:45a or 9:15a, Sat Feb 1 Community Fair
elementary.valleycharterschool.org
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Chime Institute (K-8) — apps avail online now, deadline March 7 3p, lottery March 14
tours: Feb 5 9a, Feb 12 9a, Feb 19 9a, Feb 26 9a, Mar 5 9a
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Our Community School (K-8) —  apps avail online now, deadline for K: Mar, deadline for Gr 1-8: May
tours: Feb 5, 8a, Feb 19 8a, Mar 5 8a, April 9 8a (818) 350-5000

SELECT 2014 Middle School Charter Deadlines: 

Animo WS MS — apps avail online now for wait list, deadline Dec 6 5p, lottery Dec 19, 2013 5p
 
The City School — apps avail online now, deadline Mar 3 10p, lottery Mar 13 4p (new location tbd)
tours: Jan 25 10a, Feb 1 10a, Feb 6, 7p, Feb 22 10a
 
Larchmont Charter/Hollywood (K-12) & WeHo (K-8) — apps avail online now – one application for all campuses, deadline Feb 19 5p, lottery Mar 1 9a
 
Magnolia Science Academy 4 — apps avail online now, deadline tbd
tours: Every Weds 3p
 
Magnolia Science Academy 6 — apps avail online now, deadline tbd
 
New LA Charter — apps avail online soon, deadline Mar 7 6p, lottery Mar 13 6:30p
tours: Jan 23 7p, Jan 31 8:45a, Feb 11 7p, Feb 22 3p, Feb 26 7p, Mar 7 6p (deadline)
 
New West Charter — apps avail at mandatory tour, deadline Apr 9 4p, verification Apr 11-15, lottery Apr 23 4p
tours: Jan 25 10a, Feb 5 6p, Apr 3 6p @SaMoHi
Ocean Charter School — apps avail onsite, deadline Jan 24 3p, lottery Feb 26 10a
Info mtgs: Jan 7 8:30a & 6p, Jan 9 8:30a, Jan 23 8:30a & 6p
Paul Revere Charter — apps closed for 2014, deadline Jan 17 4p, lottery Feb 19 7p
can apply for the 2nd non-resident wait list
 
Westchester Secondary Charter (6-10) — apps avail online now, deadline Mar 21 5p, lottery Mar 24 6p
tours: Feb 3 9a, Feb 17 9a, Mar 3 9a, Mar 17 9a
 
Wish Charter  — questions can be sent to wish secondary@gmail.com or call 310.642.9474
MS Info: Jan 29 6p, Feb 12 6p, Mar 12 9a app deadline Mar 12, Lottery Mar 28 8:30a
Other – NOT a charter, but a semi-autonomous District school of innovation:
Incubator Pilot School — no enrollment info yet for 2014
Chime Institute (K-8) — apps avail online now, deadline Mar 7 3p, lottery Mar 14
tours: Jan 22 9a, Feb 5 9a, Feb 122 9a, Feb 19 9a, Feb 26 9a, Mar 5 9a
Our Community School (K-8) —  apps avail online now, deadline for K: Mar, deadline for Gr 1-8: May
tours: Feb 5, 8a, Feb 19 8a, Mar 5 8a, April 9 8a (818) 350-5000
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Valley Charter MS — apps avail Sept 1, 2013, deadline Oct 23, lottery Oct 25, 2013
tours: Jan 28 9:30a, Jan 30 9:30a, Feb 6, 11, 13 @9:30a
middle.valleycharterschool.org
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For more info and schools, please view my color-coded school finder maps HERE.

Updated Flier: Westside Middle School Forum Thurs, Oct 24

Middle-School-Forum-Final

Shopping Middle Schools on the Westside? Then you’ll want to check this out.

Thurs, October 24th starting at 6p, a dozen area middle schools will be under one roof at Mark Twain Middle School presenting their pitches, power points and pamphlets. Come, listen, learn. Afterward there’ll be a chance to walk up to each school table and ask questions.

And of course, I’ll be there to help focus you on your options.

WESTSIDE MIDDLE SCHOOL FORUM!
Thurs, October 24, 2013 6-8:30p
at Mark Twain Middle School
2224 Walgrove Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90066
It’s FREE!

Westside Middle School Forum, Oct 24 6p

Middle-School-Forum-Final

Shopping Middle Schools on the Westside? Then you’ll want to check this out.

Thurs, October 24th starting at 6p, a dozen area middle schools will be under one roof at Mark Twain Middle School presenting their pitches, power points and pamphlets. Come, listen, learn. Afterward there’ll be a chance to walk up to each school table and ask questions.

And of course, I’ll be there to help focus you on your options.

WESTSIDE MIDDLE SCHOOL FORUM!
Thurs, October 24, 2013 6-8:30p
at Mark Twain Middle School
2224 Walgrove Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90066
It’s FREE!

Thanks to organizers Julia Morgan and Sandi Wise, and the VNC Ed Committee. Thanks also to Mark Twain for hosting. No thanks to Venice HS (originally pegged to host) who had so much school pride they wouldn’t allow their space to be shared with a mix of charters, pilots, and magnets. Well, likely it was only the charters and pilot. Seriously? How HS of them!

2014 Magnet/eChoices Site is LIVE!

It’s Magnet Time Again!
by Tanya Anton | GoMamaGuide.com

Choices2014It’s time.

The site is LIVE. The 2014-15 Magnet/eChoices brochure is now available and the application window has officially opened. Apply online now!

Beginning today, Tuesday, October 1, 2013 through the deadline Friday, November 15, 2013 at 5p, LAUSD residents may apply to the Magnet Program or Permits With Transportation (PWT) program for next year.

Visit echoices.lausd.net. It’s ONLINE. 24/7. It’s easy. It’s fast. It’s paperless.

Highlights for 2014:

– No longer accepting late applications. But you can make changes to your online app up until the final Nov 15 deadline. You’ve got 6 weeks to do this folks. Don’t be late. Do this now, get those apps in on time!

– NO NCLB PSC Program! No Option B Magnet/PSC Program Combo!
Due to LAUSD’s NCLB waiver being approved by the US Dept of Ed in August 2013, the NCLB PSC option for students enrolled in PI (Program Improvement) schools is no longer available and will be phased out for current PSC students. (Don’t know what I’m talking about? Don’t worry. It’s not available anymore.)

– Notification letters will go out by the end of March and will be sent via email if applied online.

Students MAY be contacted with an opening up until the 4th week of school. (This DOES happen. The late notification. It happened to us this year.) Waitlist points will finalize after then. *Students may also be called during the first 2 weeks of the spring semester. (I don’t personally know anyone who got this call, but beware, it’s in the fine print.)

eChoices screenshot

The Basic Highlights: (Covered in much more detail in my Guidebooks)

Must be an LAUSD resident to be eligible. Falsified applications will be disqualified and removed from the program.

– Can select UP TO 3 MAGNET Choices. Points will only attach to your 1st choice. 2nd and 3rd choices will be entered with 0 points. If you aren’t selected in any of your choices during the initial automated lottery, you are placed back on the waitlist of your 1st choice.

– You are not required to select 3 choices. If accepted to ANY magnet program at any point and turn it down, you will lose ALL accumulated waitlist points.

– Only submit ONE application per child. (Check with other parent to make sure you didn’t both apply.) Must be applying for the correct grade for 2014. State Law governs age eligibility:  5 by Sept 1st for K, 6 by Sept 1st for 1st.

– Student info (address, telephone, grade) MUST MATCH info at child’s current LAUSD school. (Think robo-call info.) It is the parent’s responsibility to complete the application correctly or it will be rejected.

– Twins are treated as individuals with separate apps. There is a space to enter sibling info on each app. If only one gets in, sibling points will apply the following year.

– If currently attending a Magnet and wish to stay there…DO NOTHING! If you apply elsewhere and are selected into another magnet, you will be dropped from your current magnet program. (This has happened to people I know trying to collect points while attending a magnet program. No, No, NO! That’s what Matriculation points are for.)

– If NOT currently in a Magnet and would like to be for next year, apply now. Apply every year until you get in. Waitlist points only go back 3 consecutive years.

– Gifted/High Ability and Highly Gifted applicants must provide verification AHEAD of the Nov 15 deadline. See: echoices.lausd.net/Magnet/GiftedCriteria

– To find more detailed info about each Magnet program, click on the 7 digit school code. To find out which Magnet programs are near you, use my School Finder maps.

If this seems overwhelming or you want to discuss strategy, please contact me for a consultation. I’m happy to help. Magnets are just one of many public school options.
– Tanya Anton | gomama@mac.com

Open Enrollment Applications Accepted Now Through May 24th

OpenEnrollment Every year LAUSD offers up a list of schools that have seats available to anyone who would like to apply for them through a process called Open Enrollment (OE). This is an easy way to transfer to another school without having to jump through all the hoops one typically does with the permitting process.

Every year the District determines which schools will have open seats and how many for the following fall, then posts the list in May on their website. Schools are listed under their Educational Service Center: North, South, East, or West.

During the application window, which opened this year on Mon, May 6th and closes on Fri, May 24th, you may go to as many of the OE schools listed and apply for a seat. Applications are available at each school site, and are a brief one-page transfer request.

At the end of the application period, if there are more seats than applicants, everyone who applied will be offered enrollment. If there are more applicants than seats, the school site will hold its own lottery to determine who gets offered enrollment and the sequence of their waitlist. You may apply to as many OE schools as you like. Once enrolled on an OE transfer, you do not need to reapply each year.

For more info, see

LAUSD OE info page:
http://tinyurl.com/lyg2aj3

2013-14 Open Enrollment List 
http://tinyurl.com/k6qn8rq

SAS Applications Accepted Now Through April 30th

GATEIf your child qualifies, NOW is the time to get those SAS applications in. (SAS stands for Schools For Advanced Studies.) The deadline to apply to an SAS school is Tuesday, April 30th for the 2013-14 school year. Acceptance notifications will come out May 6-10th.

In order to apply to an SAS school, students must meet eligibility requirements, either by being identified as GATE (Gifted and Talented), verified by their teacher and principal, or by meeting specific testing thresholds.

If your child is wait listed at their magnet choice and you haven’t yet heard if they got into that charter school, SAS programs (if they qualify) can be another school option to consider. You may apply to more than one SAS program, you apply directly at the school site, and the school will determine which applicants get accepted or not at the end of the application period. Sometimes its handled on a first-come first served basis, other schools base student enrollment on a more selective criteria and student review.

For more on SAS (Schools for Advanced Studies) programs, including eligibility requirements and the list of school programs in each local area, see:

http://www.lausd.net/lausd/offices/GATE/prog-opt-3.html