Kindergarten

In her classroom, a young Latina student wears ladybug earrings and smiles at the camera

Happening Now: Kindergarten Waitlists

What You Can Do Without Leaving Home 

Your family’s health is important to us! Here's what you can do online with MySchools:
  • See the waitlists your child is on 
  • Add your child to additional waitlists 
  • Check your child’s position on each waitlist 

Don’t have a MySchools account?

Learn about waitlists by calling 718-935-2009 or emailing ESEnrollment@schools.nyc.gov.

Questions? We’re Here to Help 

For updates, please keep checking this page and sign up for our kindergarten admissions email list. 

**New to NYC and need a kindergarten placement for the fall? Learn what to do now on our New Students page.**

Learn How Students Get Offers

Watch this animation to learn how students of all ages get offers to NYC public schools, including kindergarten programs:

Who Can Apply?

Every five-year-old in New York City is guaranteed a seat in a public school kindergarten program. Children start kindergarten in the September of the calendar year they turn five. If your child was born in 2015, you will apply to kindergarten this winter, and your child will start kindergarten in Fall 2020.

We welcome all of the following to apply to kindergarten: current pre-K students at DOE public schools, Pre-K Centers, NYC Early Education Centers, charter schools, and private and parochial schools; students with disabilities; students with accessibility needs; students learning English; students in temporary housing; and LGBTQ and gender nonconforming students.

Find Elementary Schools

Start exploring kindergarten programs around the time your child starts pre-K.

Two Paths to Elementary School

There are two paths to kindergarten admissions.

  1. Apply to Kindergarten. During the application period, submit your kindergarten application online, by phone, or in person at a Family Welcome Center.
  2. Participate in Gifted & Talented Admissions (Optional). Children applying to kindergarten can also test to apply to kindergarten Gifted & Talented (G&T) programs. The registration period to schedule the test for the 2019-2020 school year has closed.

School Types

There are two types of schools that you can add to your kindergarten application.

  1. Zoned Schools. If you live in an area zoned for a specific school, your children have priority to attend that school.
  2. Non-Zoned Schools. These schools do not have a zone. Families who live anywhere in the district or borough can attend them. Districts 1, 7, and 23 have no zoned schools—students living in District 1, 7, or 23 have priority to attend all schools in their district.

Please note that Gifted & Talented programs use a separate admissions process; you cannot list G&T programs on your child's kindergarten application.

Your Kindergarten Choices

  • MySchools. During the application period, use MySchools to learn if you have a zoned elementary school, find choices for your child’s application, and apply to kindergarten. Year-round, you can call 311 to learn your district and zoned school.
  • 2020 Kindergarten and Gifted & Talented Admissions Guide. Learn more about kindergarten admissions and view maps of the kindergarten programs in each district. Find information about each school, such as grades served, accessibility, any Dual Language or G&T programs, and whether non-zoned students got offers to that school last year. When schools are in session, contact them directly to get the most up-to-date information about their programs and services. Scroll down to the Documents section of this page to download this guide or read it online.

Diversity in Admissions

Elementary schools across the city are participating in a pilot initiative to increase diversity within their schools.

Charter Schools

Charter schools have a separate admissions process. Contact charter schools directly to learn how to apply.

View Our Open House Calendar

*Please note that NYC public school buildings are currently closed. During this time, we encourage you to visit schools' websites to learn more about them.*

Find open house dates in the calendar below, but contact schools directly for the most recent information, such as whether they will hold virtual open houses or information sessions.

How to Apply

The kindergarten application is currently closed. However, NYC families of children born in 2015 can still add their children to waitlists: learn more at the top of this page.

When the application period is open, you can add up to 12 schools to your child's kindergarten application. Submit only one application per child. If your child has a zoned school, it is a good idea to add it to their kindergarten application—your child has priority to attend their zoned school.

You can submit your kindergarten application one of three ways:

  • Online with MySchools in English, Spanish, Chinese, Bengali, Russian, Arabic, Urdu, Haitian Creole, Korean, or French. We’ll let you know when the application opens and you can apply online!
  • By phone at 718-935-2009
  • By contacting a Family Welcome Center

Interpretation services are available in more than 200 languages for phone and in-person applications. You can ask questions and request information about admissions in any language when you call us or contact a Family Welcome Center.

Kindergarten admissions is not first come, first served—all applications submitted online, by phone, or in person by the deadline will be treated the same based on admissions priorities.

Get Your Kindergarten Offer

Kindergarten offers were made in June. Your offer letter will tell you where your child will go to kindergarten this fall. It will also tell you where your child is waitlisted.

Waitlist Offers

A school has a kindergarten waitlist when there are more students that apply to it than kindergarten seats available. Your child will automatically be on the waitlist for any school you listed higher on your kindergarten application than the school where your child got an offer. Schools will contact you directly if they are able to offer your child a seat from the waitlist.

G&T Scores and Results

If your child took the G&T test, you will receive their results in the spring. If your child receives an eligible score, they will also be able to apply to G&T programs. Families who submit a G&T application will get a G&T results letter in June. This letter may or may not include a G&T offer. If your child does get a G&T offer, you will have to choose to accept the G&T program or your child's kindergarten placement.

Accept Your Offer and Register

First, accept your kindergarten offer to secure your child's seat. You can accept your offer in one of the following ways:

  • If you applied online, you can accept your offer online at MySchools.nyc
  • If you applied by phone or in person, you can accept your offer:

Then contact the school directly to learn how and when to register. Learn what you'll need to provide when you register for kindergarten in this checklist.

Students Who Move During the Admissions Process

If your family moves during the admissions process, call 718-935-2009 or contact your new zoned school to update your information and talk about changes to your kindergarten application or program.

  • If you're unsure what your new zoned school is, enter your home address here.
  • If you don't have a zoned school, learn what to do on the New Students page.
  • Your child’s priority to attend certain programs may change if you move.

Documents

  • Learn about kindergarten admissions and see programs listed by borough in the 2020 NYC Kindergarten Admissions Guide. Download it in your language below. Or for an accessible experience, read the digitally accessible edition of this admissions guide online and use the digitally accessible MySchools Directory experience to learn about kindergarten programs.
  • Use the Pre-Registration Checklist to learn what you need to provide when you accept your child's kindergarten offer.
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