What are "priorities?"
Sometimes a school doesn’t have room for every student who lists it as a choice. When this happens, the computer assigns students based on choice and priorities. Sibling priority is one of our highest priorities, and other priorities include EEC/ELC priority, present school priority, and East Boston/Non East Boston priority.
We try to assign children in the same family to the same school if the parent requests it. If you want your children to go to the same school, ask the Welcome Center staff how to apply for sibling priority. However, sometimes a school doesn’t have room for all the siblings who apply for it; so we can’t guarantee sibling assignments. Be sure to list sibling preference the first time you apply.
Present school priority gives a student priority to a program in his/her school over another student attending a different school. For example, a student currently enrolled in grade 3 at the Hennigan School will receive a priority to a grade 4 AWC (Advanced Work Course) seat at the Hennigan over a grade 3 student attending the Mendell School who has selected the Hennigan AWC program.
Students completing grade 1 at an Early Learning Center (ELC) or Early Education Center (EEC) that does not have a Pathway school will be assigned to available grade 2 seats before students new to the BPS or those applying for transfers from other elementary schools.
When assigning these students to grade 2 seats, including assignments from wait lists, the usual factors will be considered, including the registration period when the students applied, priorities, and their random number. Exceptions may include program seats for English Language Learners, services for some students with disabilities, and middle school-age students because some East Boston elementary schools have pathways to middle schools in Charlestown.
Due to its unique location, East Boston general education students beginning in K2 have a guarantee to an assignment in East Boston, if they so choose.
The computer gives each application a random number. Random numbers are used to break “ties” between students who have the same priorities for the school.
How does this work? Let’s say there is one seat left for K2 at the Kenny School. All applicants with sibling have been assigned. Three additional students, all without sibling priority, listed the Kenny as their first choice. The student with the lowest (“best”) random number will be assigned.