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District Releases Results of Common Lottery System

Friday, April 1, 2016
Over 21,000 students participate in 3rd annual ‘My School DC,’ which matches students with DCPS and Public Charter Schools

(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser and Deputy Mayor for Education Jennifer Niles announced the results of My School DC, the District’s common lottery system for DC Public Schools (DCPS) and nearly all public charter schools.  This is the third year the District has held the lottery, which allows families to use a single online application to apply to the public school of their choice. My School DC received 21,208 applications from families interested in attending one of over 200 DCPS or public charter schools for the 2016-17 school year, an increase of nearly 1,000 applications over last year. The common lottery maximizes the number of students matched to a school they want to attend citywide.

“Washington, DC has the fastest improving urban school district in the country, which is why year after year, more families choose to send their kids to our public schools,” said Mayor Bowser. "My School DC simplifies the school selection process for families by eliminating barriers and centralizing information, so parents can access the District’s public school options with ease.”

Families use the lottery to apply to charter schools and all DCPS PK3 and PK4 programs, out-of-boundary, and selective citywide high schools.  Families can apply to - and rank - up to 12 schools for each child. Of the 21,208 students who applied before the deadline, 70 percent were matched through the lottery. Of those matched, 61 percent were offered a seat at their top choice, and 86 percent were offered a seat at one of their top three school choices. Students will be offered spots from waitlists over the spring and summer.

My School DC is a joint effort between the Deputy Mayor for Education, DCPS, the Public Charter School Board, the Office of the Chief Technology Officer, and public charter school leaders. It continues to serve as an innovative model of what true cross-sector collaboration can accomplish for the benefit of District families.  In response to parent feedback, My School DC will publish centralized data on the number of seats offered in the lottery by grade and school. It will also publish waitlist movement by grade and school so that families might see how many waitlist offers were made at different points in the summer. These data will be available by mid-April on the My School DC Resources page at www.myschooldc.org.

“My School DC makes it easier for families to navigate the wonderful school choices we have in the District,” said Deputy Mayor for Education Jennifer Niles. “Today, we celebrate another year of collaboration across education sectors to meet the needs of our families.” 

My School DC coordinated an extensive outreach campaign in multiple languages to make sure that families across the city were aware of the lottery and application process. The overall distribution of applications by students’ ward of residence increased this year and continues to reflect the current distribution of public school students in the city, as it has each year – an indication that families in every part of the city are able to access the application and participate in the lottery.

“The combined lottery format is a huge improvement over how the lottery worked when my oldest entered pre-k in 2009,” said Alex Page, a Ward 4 resident and member of the My School DC Parent Advisory Council. “Having a single process with all the information in one place is way easier for families.”

Families can log onto www.myschooldc.org and check their results or call the My School DC hotline at 202- 888-6336. Families who were matched through the lottery must submit their enrollment forms in person by May 2 to the school where they were matched. Anyone who was not matched with a school or missed the deadline may submit a post-lottery application at www.myschooldc.org.

For more information on the process and how to submit a post-lottery application, please visit www.myschooldc.org or call 202-888-6336.