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    Exam Schools

     

  • Boston Public Schools has three exam schools: Boston Latin AcademyBoston Latin School, and the John D. O'Bryant School of Mathematics and Science. All three schools accept new students for grades 7 and 9. 

    The O’Bryant School will not accept grade 10 students for the 2022-2023 school year.

    Due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new exam school admissions policy approved by School Committee on July 14, 2021, the admissions process for the 2022-2023 school year will be based only on GPA. Students will not be required to take an admissions test.

     


  • Admissions Process Info Sessions

    Students entering grades 7 or 9 in September 2022 and residing in the City of Boston are eligible to apply to one of our exam schools (Boston Latin Academy, Boston Latin School, and O'Bryant School of Math and Science). Please join us at one of these upcoming virtual events to get additional information and details on the new registration process.

    Info Sessions:

    • Tuesday, December 7 - 5:30 PM | JOIN VIA ZOOM 

      Interpretation available in Spanish, Vietnamese, Haitian Creole, Cantonese, Mandarin, ASL

    • Thursday, December 9 - 10:30 AM | JOIN VIA ZOOM

      Interpretation available in Arabic, Somali, Cabo Verdean

    • Saturday, December 11 - 10:30 AM | JOIN VIA ZOOM

      Interpretation available in Spanish, Haitian Creole, Vietnamese, ASL

    • Tuesday, December 14 - 6:00 PM | JOIN VIA ZOOM

      Interpretation available in Cantonese, Mandarin, Cabo Verdean, Arabic, Somali

    View the Info Session Flyer

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  • Eligibility

    To be considered for admission to one of the city’s three exam schools, students must be currently enrolled in grades 6, 8, or 9 and live in the City of Boston.

    Families of students not currently enrolled in BPS must also verify their residency in the City of Boston. The deadline for residency verification has been extended to Friday, December 17, 2021.

    BPS grade 8 students currently attending an exam school are eligible to participate in the admissions process to apply for grade 9 at a different exam school.

    Students are required to meet the minimum GPA in order to be considered for an invitation to a BPS exam school.

    • Admissions for school year 2022-2023, applicants must have earned a B or higher average GPA based on marks in English Language Arts (ELA), Math, Science, and Social Studies from the completed marking periods between August 2021 and January 2022 of the current school year.
      • For BPS grade 7 applicants, this will be quarter 1 and quarter 2, or the first trimester of their grade 6 marks.
      • For BPS grade 9 applicants, this will be quarter 1 and quarter 2, or the first trimester of their grade 8 marks.
      • For private, parochial, and commonwealth charter school applicants, we will consider the marks from the completed marking terms between August 1, 2021 and January 31, 2022.


  • Residency Verification

    Parents/guardians of students who are not currently enrolled in Boston Public Schools are required to verify their City of Boston residency at a BPS Welcome Center as part of the application process. The deadline for residency verification has been extended to Friday, December 17, 2021.

    If the residency verification process is not completed by December 17, 2021, the student will not be considered for admission to a BPS exam school. 

    Students who must complete the Residency Verification Process include:

    • Students attending a private school
    • Students attending parochial school
    • Students attending METCO program schools
    • Students attending Commonwealth Charter schools (excludes UP Academy, Boston Green Academy, and other “in-district” BPS charter schools)
    • Students attending schools outside the City of Boston
    • Students being home-schooled must demonstrate that both the student and parent/guardian live in the City of Boston 

    As part of the verification process, parents/guardians are required to provide:

    • Two proofs of residency that list the student’s Boston home address (See list of acceptable documents here)
    • The student’s original birth certificate
    • The student's immunization record
    • Parent or guardian’s photo identification  
    • Rank order of exam school choices
    • Signed Release of Student Information

    Students who currently attend a public school outside the City of Boston (excluding METCO program schools) are required to provide a letter from the respective Superintendent of that city or town acknowledging the student’s Boston residency, as per our requirement, and verifying the student’s enrollment in their public school. The letter must be original, notarized, on school district letterhead, and must be presented to the registration specialist with the BPS required residency documents during the verification period.

    Note: The residency verification must be completed even if a family has other children enrolled in Boston Public Schools; a student is receiving special education services from BPS; the parent or guardian is a current city employee; or if  the student was previously enrolled in the BPS.

    There are two ways to submit an application:

    • In-person: Walk into one of the four BPS Welcome Centers and work directly with a Registration Specialist
    • By computer: Pre-register here and schedule an appointment here to complete the application with a Registration Specialist (follow-up appointment either in-person or over the phone is required).  Please select ’Pre-Register for BPS’ from the side menu and click the first option if you have never registered any child for Boston Public Schools, or select the second option if you already have an Aspen account.

    A list of required documents and Welcome Centers locations for the registration application can be found here: BPS Registration Document ChecklistBPS Welcome Center Locations & Hours

    Translated copies of the BPS Registration Document Checklist are available below.

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  • Grade Point Average (GPA)

    The exam schools admissions policy establishes baseline criteria for eligibility beyond residency. Students will need to have a Grade Point Average (GPA) of a B or higher to be eligible to apply.  Admissions for the 2022-2023 school year, the GPA will include only current year grades in English Language Arts (ELA), Math, Science and Social Studies.  Students must have grades in each subject for the GPA to be calculated.

    For students attending private, parochial, commonwealth charter, or METCO program schools, BPS will send schools detailed instructions on how to electronically submit student marks and current year report cards in January 2022.  The deadline for schools to submit information to BPS is Friday, February 11, 2022. 

    For students currently attending a BPS school, the student’s marks will be automatically downloaded from the BPS Student Information System or collected from the school in order to calculate the GPA and determine eligibility. BPS will notify families of students that meet the GPA requirement of a B or higher in February 2022. 

    All schools must also submit school certification that they represent performance against the Massachusetts curriculum framework grade level standards

    Changes in the transcription or computation of Grade Point Averages will not be accepted after February 11, 2022.

    The table below outlines which subject areas and grading terms are included for the 2022-2023 admissions cycle.

  • The July 2021 update to the Exam School Admission Policy stipulates that the district “develop and publish a coherent district equitable grading policy using an A-F scale wherein an A+ is treated like an A.” The 12 point grade scale from 0-12 will be rescaled to 0-11 where 0=F and 11 represents both A+ and A. This will result in the following crosswalk from letter to numeric grades that will be used in the GPA calculation. 

  • School personnel should advise parents and students of the importance of the Grade Point Average (GPA) in ranking students for possible invitations to the examination schools. 

    Composite Score Calculation

    The composite score calculation process combines GPA and additional points into one number on a 0-100 scale. Once the GPA has been calculated on an 11-point scale, it will be scaled to a full 100 points by dividing the GPA by 11 and multiplying by 100.  The additional points will then be added to the total score.  Students receiving additional points may get a maximum score of 110 or 115.  

    Additional Points

    In addition to GPA and test scores, students may be eligible to receive additional points to their application. Students living in housing owned by the Boston Housing Authority, in the care of the Department of Children and Families, or experiencing homelessness will receive an additional fifteen points. Students attending a school where 40% or more of the students enrolled come from economically disadvantaged families will receive ten points. Schools’ enrollment of students coming from economically disadvantaged families will be calculated using a five-year average. Points are not additive, therefore students receiving the 15 points cannot also qualify for the ten points.


  • Invitations

    In July 2021, the Boston School Committee voted to approve a new admissions policy for the city’s three exam schools. Under the new plan, applicants will be ranked from highest to lowest based on their composite score (GPA and additional points if applicable) and assigned to one of the eight socioeconomic (SES) tiers based on their home address. Families are able to use the SES Tier Map to learn what tier their child will be placed in.  For more information about the calculation of the socioeconomic tiers, please click here.

    A tier is a group of geographic areas in the city with similar socioeconomic characteristics, including:

    • Percent of persons living below poverty level
    • Owner-occupied households 
    • Single parent households
    • Non-English speaking households
    • Education attainment 


    Each tier will receive a socioeconomic score which determines which tier has the highest need.  The tier with the lowest SES score (largest percentage of high need populations) will be considered first and the tier with the highest SES score (lowest percentage of high need populations) will be considered last in each round.

    Each tier will have the same number of available seats.  Invitations will be awarded through 10 assignment rounds with 10% of seats available in each tier.  Students will be placed in a seat based on their preference.

     


  • Phase II of the Admissions Policy for the 2023-2024 school year

    The admissions policy for the 2023-2024 school year and onwards will require both the student’s GPA and test scores from the NWEA MAP Growth assessment.  The student’s GPA will account for 70% of their admissions score and their score on the NWEA MAP Growth assessment will account for 30%. Students may be eligible to receive an additional 10 or 15 points based on specific socioeconomic factors.

    Students will have two opportunities to take the assessment: Spring and Fall of 2022. 

    The GPA will be calculated based on marks from the last marking period from the 2021-2022 school year in English and Language Arts (ELA) and Math, and marks from the first two marking periods or first trimester/semester from the 2022-2023 school year in English Language Arts (ELA), Math, Science, and Social Studies.

    Additional information regarding the Spring test administration will be shared in January-February 2022.