As of March 15, 2022
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 information provided below reflects the number of students who applied to charter schools but did not gain admittance as of March 15, 2022. This initial 2022-2023 waitlist report finds the following:
Figure 1. Unique Number of Students on Charter School Waitlists3
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 for the upcoming school year. These regulations, however, allowed schools to keep students on their waitlists who submitted applications before March 31, 2014. As shown and footnoted in the table below, two schools continue to include waitlisted students from prior years on their active waitlists.
Figure 2. Total Number of Applications Reported on Charter School Waitlists
Please note that the total number figure represents every student record found on each charter school's submitted initial waitlist.
† Atlantis Charter School and Springfield International Charter School reported 11 and 8 students who were waitlisted prior to March 31, 2014, respectively, in accordance with 603 CMR 1.05(10)(a).
* These 12 schools utilized the Boston Charter School Application online application system.
ɸ Community Day Charter Public School previously operated as three separate charter schools that were consolidated into a single school beginning in the 2022-2023 school year.
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 demand for the current 2022-2023 school year rather than exact numbers of students willing to accept offers at each school.
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 input 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., 2/28/2022) and student age. 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 including 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 continues to implement its matching process, which is refined and updated to increase accuracy in identifying students who applied for admission to more than one charter school.
The Department thanks all of the charter school administrators and staff who worked diligently to report their waitlists as accurately as possible. The Department appreciates the efforts made by schools to submit their waitlist reports as promptly as possible.
The appendix to this report contains the following numbers based on a March 15, 2022 data collection:
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. For further information regarding this report, please contact Brenton Stewart or the Office of Charter Schools and School Redesign at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Initial Report of Charter School Waitlist as of March 15, 2022
FY2023 Initial Waitlist Appendix
1 Please note that the reduction in the number of charters overall is due to the consolidation of three schools into one school for FY23.
2 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 Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education (Commissioner).
3 The Department works with schools to identify the students who were placed on waitlists prior to March 31, 2014 and continue to be maintained on a waitlist. Please note that the number of uniquely identified students who applied for admittance prior to March 2014 declined by 474 when compared to the 2021-2022 waitlist initial report. Only 19 students who were placed on waitlists prior to March 31, 2014 were reported for the 2022-2023 school year.
4 Of the 21,091 students who newly applied in 2022-2023, none were found on school waitlists established prior to March 31, 2014.
Last Updated: May 10, 2022
Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
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