New York City parents are in a holding pattern. Once again, many of the most popular, General Education public schools in the city have wait-lists. And that's not wait-lists for kids outside of the zone who'd like to attend. That's wait-lists for kids inside the zone. See a complete list, here.
In fact, those figures are misleading. They only show the number of in-zone children who are wait-listed. They don't address how many are hoping for a spot out of zone. They also don't show unzoned schools, which often have over 800 applications for around 40 Kindergarten slots, because unzoned schools are open to every child in the district. No one is entitled to a spot, and thus they officially don't have a wait-list. Unzoned schools, however, do have an in-house wait-list.
When will these wait-lists start to move? History suggests it will be after Gifted & Talented placements are made in May, and accepted in June. Some families will opt for G&T seats, thus giving up seats in General Ed programs. Parents will snatch up top General Ed programs and some will give up seats in charter schools or private schools, which will prompt the wait-lists to move there, and so on and so on in a circle all the way up through the fall, and even into October, when the rolls officially close.
So what can an NYC parent do to increase their chances of getting off the wait-list and snagging a spot at a General Ed public school, zoned or unzoned? One Queens mom took the legal route, and beat the system. Find out how you can, too, here.