How to Enroll in Charter Schools

Use the Charter School Directory to find the elementary, middle, and high school charter schools in your borough. The directory tells you each school's

  • mission and model
  • lottery and enrollment preferences
  • location and community school district
  • contact information
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You can also find charter schools using Find a School:

Open Enrollment

Charter schools must admit students of all kinds. They cannot exclude students on the basis of:

  • disability
  • race
  • creed
  • gender
  • national origin
  • religion
  • ancestry
  • intellectual ability
  • measures of achievement or aptitude
  • athletic ability

Lottery and Enrollment

The deadline to apply for most charter schools is April 1.

For information about a specific charter school and its enrollment deadline, contact the school directly.

  • If the number of students who apply to a charter school is more than the number of available seats, schools will use a random selection process, such as a lottery.
  • If you miss the charter school’s deadline, you can still apply, but your child will be placed at the bottom of the waitlist.
  • Each school has its own application form, but many use the NYC Charter School Center’s Common Application (contact the school directly for more information).

Enrollment Preferences

Charter schools give enrollment preferences to:

  • returning students
  • siblings of students already enrolled
  • students living in the same community school district as the school

Charter schools may also give preferences to the following groups (if law and the school’s authorizer allow):

  • English language learners
  • Students who are eligible for free or reduced price lunch
  • Single-sex charter schools are allowed
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