Massachusetts Charter School Waitlist Updated Report for 2017-2018 (FY18)
As of October 1, 2017 (Posted January 2018)
Each spring, charter schools send the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department) the number of students enrolled for the upcoming school year as well as the number of students who were placed on the schools' waitlists through each school's initial lottery, which is typically held in February or March. The Department's March 2017 waitlist collection included students who applied for admission for the 2017-2018 school year (the initial waitlist).
The information provided below is an update to the initial (March 2017) waitlist data as of October 1, 2017. The information reflects late offers of admissions, which may result in acceptances or declines, as well as any new lotteries for seats that may have opened up over the summer and into the school year.
For the March 2017 initial waitlist, 741 out of 80 charter schools had waitlists for which they reported 58,733 entries, with 31,600 unique students identified. Of that student headcount, 24,524 unique students newly applied for admittance to at least one charter school for the 2017-2018 school year; the remaining 7,076 unique students applied for admittance prior to March 2014.
The information provided below reflects the number of students who applied to charter schools for the 2017-2018 school year (FY18), but did not gain admittance and were reported on a charter school waitlist as of October 1, 2017. This updated 2017-2018 waitlist report finds the following:
- Of the 74 charter schools who submitted initial waitlist data in March 2017, 73 continued to maintain or had created a subsequent waitlist.
- The updated charter school waitlists contained 48,572 entries on all waitlists, representing 27,416 unique students.
- Of the 27,416 unique students, 6,333 students applied for admittance prior to March 20142; representing a decrease of 2,712 when compared to number of pre-2014 applicants first identified on the 2016-17 initial waitlist report.
- The remaining 21,083 unique students3 newly applied for admittance to at least one charter school for the 2017-2018 school year; representing an increase of 852 students when compared to the number of unique students who were still reported on the 2016-2017 waitlist report update.
- Of the unique students, 19,917 students appear on a single waitlist and 7,499 students (27 percent) appear on more than one waitlist.
As stated in the 2017-2018 initial waitlist report, 16 Commonwealth charter schools utilized the Boston Charter School Application online application system, which made it easier for families to apply to one or more of the participating charter schools. While this change in application process contributed to the overall increase in total waitlist records initially observed (58,733 in March 2017 compared to 44,250 in March 2016), it also resulted in similar a number of unique students applying for entry to the upcoming school year (24,524 in March 2017 compared to 23,602 students in March 2016) being maintained on more than one waitlist (27 percent in March 2017 compared to 17 percent in March 2016). Partially as a result of this initial overall increase, this year's updated waitlist report found approximately seventeen percent fewer total reported entries from March to October 2017. It is important to note that not every student on a charter school waitlist would accept an offer of admission if it were proffered. Some students may have been admitted to other schools that meet their needs, while others may be reluctant to switch schools after the beginning of the school year. Another factor contributing to the overall decrease is the number of schools that are continuing to grow due to age or recently granted expansion requests or have increased access to new seats by revising backfilling practices to exceed requirements.4
Figure 1. Unique Number of Students on Charter School Waitlists
|Number of Waitlists a Student Appears On
||Unique (Unduplicated) Number of Students on Charter School Waitlist(s)
|Unique (Unduplicated) Number of Students who Applied for Admittance and Were Waitlisted Prior to March 31, 2014
||Unique (Unduplicated) Number of Students who Applied for Admittance for the 2017-2018 School Year and were Waitlisted
In 2014, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education adopted regulations requiring charter schools to refresh their waitlists every year, based on the most recent application cycle. These regulations, however, allowed schools to keep students on their waitlists who submitted applications before March 31, 2014. As shown in Figure 2, 8 schools continue to include such students from prior years on their active waitlists. The table below (Figure 2) also identifies charter schools that have held subsequent lotteries and the number of students who were added to these school waitlists.
Figure 2. Total Number of Applications Reported on Charter School Waitlists
||Total Number of Applicants Reported on Initial Waitlists as of March 15, 2017
||Applicants Reported on Initial Waitlists that were Removed as of October 1, 2017
||Remaining Applicants that were added to Waitlists prior to March 31, 2014 as of October 1, 2017
||Remaining Applicants that were added to Waitlists by March 15, 2017 as of October 1, 2017
||Applicants Added to Waitlists after March 15, 2017 as of October 1, 2017
||Total Number of Applicants Reported on Updated Waitlists as of October 1, 2017
|Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School||CW||659||114|| ||545||0||545|
|Academy Of the Pacific Rim Charter Public School*||CW||1,329||351|| ||978||0||978|
|Advanced Math and Science Academy Charter School||CW||537||66|| ||471||0||471|
|Alma del Mar Charter School||CW||464||64|| ||400||0||400|
|Argosy Collegiate Charter School||CW||241||164|| ||77||105||182|
|Atlantis Charter School†||CW||431||140||36||255||123||414|
|Barnstable Community Horace Mann Charter Public School||HM||24||12|| ||12||0||12|
|Baystate Academy Charter Public School||CW||309||121|| ||188||0||188|
|Benjamin Banneker Charter Public School||CW||352||26|| ||326||0||326|
|Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School||CW||355||78|| ||277||0||277|
|Bentley Academy Charter School||HM||23||23|| ||0||32||32|
|Boston Collegiate Charter School*||CW||1,797||287|| ||1,510||0||1,510|
|Boston Day and Evening Academy Charter School||HM||55||49|| ||6||56||62|
|Boston Green Academy Horace Mann Charter School||HM||269||19|| ||250||0||250|
|Boston Preparatory Charter Public School*||CW||1,203||257|| ||946||0||946|
|Boston Renaissance Charter Public School*||CW||2,392||73|| ||2,319||0||2,319|
|Bridge Boston Charter School†||CW||1,322||58||1,068||196||0||1,264|
|Brooke Charter School*||CW||4,398||270|| ||4,128||0||4,128|
|Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School||CW||236||39|| ||197||0||197|
|Christa McAuliffe Charter Public School||CW||211||108|| ||103||0||103|
|City on a Hill Charter Public School Circuit Street||CW||319||319|| ||0||0||0|
|City on a Hill Charter Public School Dudley Square||CW||187||187|| ||0||0||0|
|City on a Hill Charter Public School New Bedford||CW||None initially reported||None initially reported|| ||None initially reported||12||12|
|Codman Academy Charter Public School*||CW||3,503||344|| ||3,159||0||3,159|
|Collegiate Charter School of Lowell||CW||214||145|| ||69||0||69|
|Community Charter School of Cambridge||CW||64||1|| ||63||28||91|
|Community Day Charter Public School - Gateway||CW||713||11|| ||702||0||702|
|Community Day Charter Public School - Prospect||CW||712||21|| ||691||0||691|
|Community Day Charter Public School - R Kingman Webster||CW||672||15|| ||657||0||657|
|Conservatory Lab Charter School*||CW||3,082||723|| ||2,359||0||2,359|
|Dudley Street Neighborhood Charter School||HM||346||194|| ||152||78||230|
|Edward M Kennedy Academy for Health Careers (Horace Mann)||HM||491||130|| ||361||22||383|
|Excel Academy Charter School*||CW||1,491||712|| ||779||0||779|
|Four Rivers Charter Public School||CW||90||21|| ||69||0||69|
|Foxborough Regional Charter School†||CW||2,104||1,032||777||295||0||1,072|
|Francis W Parker Charter Essential School||CW||199||75|| ||124||0||124|
|Global Learning Charter Public School||CW||349||102|| ||247||0||247|
|Hampden Charter School of Science East||CW||295||180|| ||115||0||115|
|Helen Y Davis Leadership Academy Charter Public School*||CW||210||20|| ||190||80||270|
|Hill View Montessori Charter Public School||CW||203||31|| ||172||0||172|
|Hilltown Cooperative Charter Public School||CW||261||34|| ||227||0||227|
|Holyoke Community Charter School||CW||88||53|| ||35||29||64|
|Innovation Academy Charter School||CW||221||71|| ||150||160||310|
|KIPP Academy Boston Charter School*||CW||2,187||245|| ||1,942||0||1,942|
|KIPP Academy Lynn Charter School||CW||1,360||127|| ||1,233||0||1,233|
|Lawrence Family Development Charter School†||CW||541||38||318||185||18||521|
|Libertas Academy Charter School||CW||75||75|| ||0||34||34|
|Lowell Community Charter Public School||CW||302||116|| ||186||0||186|
|Marblehead Community Charter Public School||CW||114||74|| ||40||25||65|
|Martha's Vineyard Charter School||CW||19||14|| ||5||0||5|
|Martin Luther King Jr Charter School of Excellence†||CW||186||99||2||85||55||142|
|MATCH Charter Public School*||CW||4,460||181|| ||4,279||0||4,279|
|Mystic Valley Regional Charter School†||CW||3,078||339||1,827||912||0||2,739|
|Neighborhood House Charter School||CW||3,697||909|| ||2,788||32||2,820|
|New Heights Charter School of Brockton||CW||134||0|| ||134||73||207|
|Old Sturbridge Academy Charter Public School||CW||99||9|| ||90||0||90|
|Phoenix Academy Public Charter High School Chelsea*||CW||178||178|| ||0||0||0|
|Pioneer Charter School of Science||CW||1,136||159|| ||977||218||1,195|
|Pioneer Charter School of Science II (PCSS-II)||CW||267||105|| ||162||60||222|
|Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School||CW||113||53|| ||60||20||80|
|Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School||CW||308||71|| ||237||0||237|
|Prospect Hill Academy Charter School||CW||269||124|| ||145||54||199|
|Rising Tide Charter Public School||CW||309||116|| ||193||10||203|
|River Valley Charter School†||CW||617||104||339||174||0||513|
|Roxbury Preparatory Charter School*||CW||856||800|| ||56||0||56|
|Sabis International Charter School†||CW||2,446||134||1,974||338||0||2,312|
|Salem Academy Charter School||CW||197||23|| ||174||26||200|
|Seven Hills Charter Public School||CW||343||63|| ||280||39||319|
|Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School||HM||127||92|| ||35||0||35|
|Sizer School: A North Central Charter Essential School||CW||63||40|| ||23||1||24|
|South Shore Charter Public School||CW||928||160|| ||768||7||775|
|Springfield Preparatory Charter School||CW||240||49|| ||191||0||191|
|Sturgis Charter Public School||CW||550||98|| ||452||0||452|
|UP Academy Charter School of Boston||HM||None initially reported||None initially reported|| ||None initially reported||12||12|
|UP Academy Charter School of Dorchester||HM||749||81|| ||668||8||676|
|Veritas Preparatory Charter School||CW||364||162|| ||202||0||202|
|Commonwealth (CW) Subtotal||56,649||10,978||6,341||39,330||1,209||46,880|
|Horace Mann (HM) Subtotal||2,084||600||0||1,484||208||1,692|
Please note that the total number represents every student record found on each charter school's submitted updated waitlist.
† These 8 schools have indicated to the Department that they included waitlist information established prior to March 31, 2014 in accordance to 603 CMR 1.05(10)(a).
* Of the 16 schools that utilized the Boston Charter School Application online application system, 12 schools still maintained a waitlist as of October 1, 2017.
The year's reports, for both the initial and update, build on last year's additional support and technical assistance provided by the Department to the field. The Department continues its efforts to increase the timeliness and accuracy of school waitlist reports. Each charter school is responsible for maintaining its own individual waitlist. To ensure uniformity, the Department created a waitlist collection template and required charter schools to use it to update waitlist data that was originally submitted by March 15, 2017, as well as input any new waitlist data. This template embedded tools that automatically flagged duplicate records, which each school could then remove before submitting its waitlist. The template also embedded tools that flagged the waitlist for other inconsistencies, such as unrealistic dates of birth (e.g., 10/1/2017). In order to verify student information and address overall waitlist accuracy, the Department corrected any transcription errors or inconsistencies in submitted charter school waitlists. Additionally, charter schools that self-identified as using waitlists established prior to March 31, 2014, as permitted by 603 CMR 1.05(10)(a), were required to identify each individual student who was included in those waitlists (and continued to remain on their waitlist) and each student who was removed from those waitlists. Finally, the Department continued to implement its matching process that was revised and updated last year in order to increase accuracy for identifying students who applied for admission to more than one charter school.
The Department has made significant improvements over the years in quantifying the exact number of students who may be actively waiting for admission to a charter school. The unique waitlist counts provided in this current report should be taken as the Department's best understanding and representation of the updated demand for the current 2017-2018 school year rather than exact numbers of students willing to accept offers at each school.
The Department thanks all of the charter school administrators and staff who worked diligently to report their waitlists as accurately and as promptly as possible.
The appendix to this report can be found in the attached Excel file, which contains updated numbers based on an October 1, 2017 data collection:
- the unique numbers of students on waitlists;
- the total number of pre-March 2014 applicants, remaining current year applicants reported on charter school waitlists by March 15, 2017, and current year applicants reported on charter school waitlists after March 15, 2017;
- the unique number of students on waitlists by grade;
- the unique number of students on waitlists by city/town;
- the total number of students on waitlists for each charter school by grade (with backfilling overlay);
- the total number of students on waitlists, by grade, for each charter school that includes pre-March 2014 applicants on their waitlist;
- the total number of students on waitlists for each charter school by city/town;
- the total number of students on waitlists for each city/town by charter school;
- the unique number of students on waitlists by city/town and grade;
- the total number of students on waitlists for each charter school by city/town by grade; and
- the total number of students on waitlists for each city/town by grade by charter school.
For more information on waitlist policy and procedures and the number of students found on previous cycles of charter school waitlists, see Charter School Technical Advisory 16-3: Enrollment Processes and FAQ's and Charter Schools Enrollemnt website, respectively. For further information regarding this report, please contact or the Brenton Stewart. Office of Charter Schools and School Redesign
Updated Report of Charter School Waitlist as of October 1, 2017
FY18 Updated Waitlist Appendix
1 The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education adopted changes to the charter school regulations in March 2014 (see 603 CMR 1.05(10)(a)), which has affected how charter schools collect waitlist data. Under the amended regulations, charter schools maintain waitlists only for the school year for which students applied (i.e., carrying over student names from enrollment lotteries from one year to another is no longer permitted). However, charter schools were allowed to maintain any waitlists that were established prior to March 31, 2014 until such waitlists are exhausted, provided that such maintenance is clearly articulated in the school's enrollment policy approved by the Department.
2 The Department has worked with schools to identify the students who were placed on waitlists prior to March 31, 2014. This additional information now allows the Department to identify students who submitted applications for admittance in the current year.
3 Please note: out of 21,083 new applying students in 2017-2018, waitlist updates indicate 371 were added to new waitlists while still remaining on other school waitlists based on applications submitted prior to March 31, 2014.
4 To meet the requirements of M.G.L. c. 70, § 89(n), charter schools must continue all reasonable efforts to fill vacant seats until February 15th, and if the school chooses, it may continue to try to fill the seat after February 15th. Unless the school's enrollment policy or a term of its charter requires, the law does not require charter schools to fill vacant seats in the last half of the grades offered and in grades 10, 11, and 12. If a school has an odd number of grades, more than half of grades offered are included in grades for which the school must fill vacant seats. For more information on these requirements and others regarding charter school enrollment processes, see the Department's Technical Advisory 16-3.
Last Updated: February 19, 2019