Lottery FAQs

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How do I enroll in a KIPP school? How do I have my child entered into the KIPP lottery?

KIPP Houston Public Schools (KIPP) is a tuition-free network of public charter schools. However, KIPP does not “enroll” or “register” students like traditional public schools. You must submit a KIPP lottery/interest form online to enter into our process. Between November 1, 2016 and February 10, 2017, KIPP schools accept student lottery forms. All of these forms will be placed into a lottery. If the number of applicants interested in a specific grade at a KIPP school exceeds the number of seats available for that grade, names are drawn through a random automated process on March 1, 2017 and families are notified of their admission status soon afterward.

If the number of lottery forms received by February 10 is fewer than the seats we have open, all children with completed forms will be automatically admitted. 

After February 10, 2017, families can still fill out an interest form for a KIPP school online or in person at a KIPP school but these forms are not included in the March 1 lottery. Children of these families are eligible for open seats available post lottery on a first-come, first-served basis and are otherwise added to the waitlist.

Please note that you can only enter one KIPP lottery form for one KIPP school per child. If you accidentally submit more than one form, the most recent form will be entered into our process.

What is a lottery form?  What is an interest form?

lottery form is used to enter your child’s information into the lottery for a specific KIPP school from November 1, 2016 to February 10, 2017. After February 10, the lottery is closed.

After February 10, 2017, families can fill out an interest form for a KIPP school online or in person at a KIPP school but these forms will not be included in the March 1 lottery.  Children of these families will be eligible for open seats available post lottery on a first-come, first-served basis and will otherwise be added to the waitlist.

Please note that you can only enter one KIPP form for one KIPP school per child. If you accidently submit more than one form, the most recent form will be entered into our process.

If I am submitting a lottery form at a school, when are the schools open?

For PreK3, PreK4 and Kindergarten families:  To submit a lottery form for PreK3, PreK4, or Kindergarten, you must complete the form in person at a KIPP school and bring the child’s birth certificate and proof of home address.

Families can come to a KIPP Houston school and submit a lottery form Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. during regular school days. Please review the school calendar for vacation days, here or contact the school directly.

Staff will be on hand to help assist you in filling out an interest form. For 1st through 12th grades, you may also fill out an interest form online.

If your lottery form is not turned in at a school by 4:00 p.m. on February 10, 2017, or online on the KIPP Houston Public Schools’ website before midnight of February 10, 2017, your child is not eligible for the lottery on March 1, 2017. However, forms submitted after February 10 are eligible, on a first-come, first-served basis for open seats that are not filled in the March 1 lottery. 

If there are not enough open seats available at a KIPP school, children are placed on a waitlist. If and when seats become available at a KIPP school, we notify families in the order of where they are on the waitlist.

Please note that you can only enter one KIPP form for one KIPP school per child. If you accidently submit more than one form, the most recent will be entered into our process.

When is the deadline for submitting a lottery form?

All lottery forms must be submitted either at a school by 4:00 p.m. on February 10, 2017, or online on the KIPP Houston Public Schools’ website by 11:59 p.m. February 10, 2017.

If your child is entering PreK3, PreK4, or Kindergarten, you must complete the lottery form in person at a KIPP Houston school. Please bring the child’s birth certificate and proof of home address with you.

How do I submit a lottery form?

You may fill out and submit a lottery form beginning November 1, 2016 through February 10, 2017. A form can be submitted online beginning on November 1, or by going to a KIPP Houston school near you beginning November 1.

If your child is entering PreK3, PreK4, or Kindergarten, you must complete the lottery form in person at a KIPP Houston school. Please bring the child’s birth certificate and proof of home address with you.

Can I submit more than one lottery/interest form or try to get my child into more than one KIPP school?

You may only enter one KIPP lottery form at one KIPP school per child. If you accidently submit more than one form, the most recent form will be entered into our process.

What happens after I submit a lottery/interest form?

Between November 1, 2016 and February 10, 2017 KIPP schools accept lottery forms. All of these forms are placed in a lottery that will take place on March 1, 2017.

If the number of children interested in a specific grade at a KIPP school exceeds the number of seats available for that grade, names are drawn through a random automated lottery process on March 1, 2017 and families are notified of their admission status soon afterward.  If the number of lottery forms for a specific KIPP school and grade received by February 10 is fewer than the seats we have open, all children with completed forms are automatically admitted.
If there are not enough open seats available at a KIPP school, children are placed on a waitlist; if and when seats become available, we will notify families in the order of where they are on the waitlist.

After February 10, 2017, families can fill out an interest form for a KIPP school online or in person at a KIPP school but these forms will not be included in the March 1, 2017 lottery.  Children of these families are eligible for open seats available post lottery on a first-come, first-served basis and are otherwise added to the waitlist.

If a child is not admitted through the KIPP Houston lottery, you may research other school options for your child by visiting Families Empowered, an organization committed to helping families find great public school options.

How does the lottery work?

Students’ names are drawn at random and every student is given a number in the order his/her name was drawn.

Each KIPP school is focused on, when possible, serving families in the community near each school. Families fill out a form for a specific school. We encourage families to fill out a form for the KIPP school where they have priority based on their ZIP code. Click here to learn more.

Where open seats are available, children receive priority in the lottery for each KIPP school in the following order:

     1. Brothers and sisters of KIPPsters who live in the ZIP code zone for a specific KIPP school or who live outside of any KIPP ZIP code zone; and children of KIPP staff

     2. All children who live in a specific KIPP school’s ZIP code zone

     3. Brothers and sisters of KIPPsters who are zoned by ZIP code to a different KIPP school that could serve that child’s grade level

     4. All children who live outside the ZIP code zone of the KIPP school to which they are applying

When does the lottery take place?

March 1, 2017

May parents/guardian attend lottery drawings?

No, school lotteries remain private because the lotteries can be a very personal time for families. To protect everyone’s privacy and feelings, we feel it is best to let families know individually if their child’s name has been drawn. The lottery is observed by witnesses; in the past, these witnesses have included a representative from the U.S. Department of Education. We are committed to making the lottery fair for everyone.

What if my child’s name is drawn in the KIPP school lottery?

Soon after March 1, 2017, you will receive a call or letter if your child’s name is drawn in the lottery.
If your child’s name is drawn, we will schedule a home visit with you and your child so that you can learn more about what it will be like to attend a KIPP school. During the home visit, you can commit to enrollment.

What if my child does not make the lottery this school year?  What is a waitlist?

If your child’s name is not selected in the lottery or all of the open seats at your zoned KIPP school in the appropriate grade level are filled, your child’s name will be placed on the school’s waiting list for that school year only.

The order of the waitlist for each school is determined first by KIPP Houston’s prioritization in lottery. Within each of these four prioritized categories, children are placed on the waitlist randomly in the order in which they are drawn and after available seats are filled.

     1. Brothers and sisters of KIPPsters who live in the ZIP code zone for a specific KIPP school or who live outside of any KIPP ZIP code zone; and children of KIPP staff

     2. All children who live in a specific KIPP school’s ZIP code zone

     3. Brothers and sisters of KIPPsters who are zoned by ZIP code to a different KIPP school that could serve that child’s grade level

     4. All children who live outside the ZIP code zone of the KIPP school to which they are applying

Waitlists do not carry over from one year to the next.  You must fill out a new lottery form each school year. If you have not heard from KIPP Houston by April 1, please contact the school whose lottery you applied for regarding your child’s lottery status.

If a child is not admitted through the KIPP Houston lottery, you may research other school options for your child by visiting Families Empowered, an organization committed to helping families find great public school options.

Does KIPP serve students in all grade levels?

KIPP Houston Public Schools serves students in PreK3 through 12th grade, but not all campuses serve all grade levels…yet. As we open new schools, most KIPP schools start with one grade. Each year, the school adds another grade level until they reach full size.

Primary schools at full size serve students in grades PreK3 through 4. Middle schools serve students in grades 5 through 8. High schools serve students in grades 9 through 12.

Click here for information about grades offered at each school.

How do I know my zoned KIPP School?

Each KIPP school is focused on, when possible, serving families in the community near the school.  Zoning is generally based on which ZIP code you live in, although some ZIP codes are divided. In some instances, ZIP codes may be shared across two schools. If both schools offer the same grade level, you may select either of these schools as the school for which you are entering the lottery.

You can determine for which school you are zoned by:
     1. Calling 832-328-1051
     2. Searching for the KIPP school nearest you to which you are zoned

If families do not live in any KIPP ZIP code zone, a child may still fill out a lottery form to attend a KIPP school if open seats are available, but we will not be able to offer transportation.

You may only enter one KIPP lottery form for one KIPP school per child. If you accidently submit more than one form, the most recent form will be entered into our process.

What does KIPP offer for a Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten grades?  How do I apply?

All PreK3 classes are half day, either morning or afternoon. Tentative times are below and subject to change. The following PreK4 schools have full day classes: ZENITH, Peace, Legacy, SHINE, Explore, and Dream.

Morning: 7:25 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Monday through Thursday and 7:25 a.m. to 10:25 a.m. on Friday.

Afternoon: 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Friday.

KIPP Houston offers PreK3 classes at specific schools for children who will be 3 years old by September 1, 2017.

KIPP Houston offers PreK4 classes at specific schools for children who will be 4 years old by September 1, 2017.

KIPP Houston offers Kindergarten classes at specific schools for children who will be 5 years old by September 1, 2017.

The age and qualifying guidelines are set by the State of Texas, not KIPP Houston Public Schools.

To submit a lottery form for PreK3, PreK4, or Kindergarten, you must complete the form in person at the school and please bring the child’s birth certificate and proof of home address.

Do I have to pay for PreK?

KIPP Houston Public Schools (KIPP) is on a mission to develop in underserved students the academic skills, intellectual habits, and qualities of character necessary to succeed at all levels of pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, college, and the competitive world beyond. KIPP offers half-day PreK3 and PreK4 at all of our primary schools, and in some cases full-day PreK4.

KIPP is a tuition-free network of public charter schools, and the great majority of our funding is through public school funding. However, PreK is not publicly funded in Texas for all children. Per the Texas Education Code:

“The Texas Legislature determines eligibility requirements for free, public prekindergarten in Texas. When the Texas legislature established the prekindergarten program the intent was, and still is, to provide early learning experiences to students who are most at-risk for school failure. Therefore the eligibility is limited. The legislature believed that a high quality prekindergarten program could mitigate the impact of the at-risk characteristics, thereby assisting these students to become school ready when they enter kindergarten”. TEC§29.153(b) SAAH, Section 7.2

How does a family qualify for tuition-free PreK? 

Depending on the PreK level, a child must be at least three or four years of age as of September 1 and fit at least one of the following criteria:

     1. Is Limited English Proficient (i.e. does not speak and comprehend the English language); or

     2. Educationally disadvantaged, determined by eligibility to participate in the national free or reduced-price lunch program established under 42 U.S.C. Section 1751 et seq.; or

     3. Homeless, as defined by 42 U.S.C. Section 1143a, regardless of the residence of the child, of either parent of the child, or of the child’s guardian or other person having lawful control of the child; or

     4. The child of an active duty member of the armed forces of the United States, including the state military forces or a reserve component of the armed forces, who is ordered to active duty by proper authority; or

     5. The child of a member of the armed forces of the United States, including the state military forces or a reserve component of the armed forces, who was injured or killed while serving on active duty; or

     6. Is or has been in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services following an adversary hearing held as provided by Section 262.201, Family Code.

The age and qualifying guidelines are set by the State of Texas, not KIPP Houston Public Schools.

For families who do not qualify for tuition-free PreK, KIPP offers PreK3 and PreK4 with tuition for students who are admitted through the lottery process. While we have not finalized the tuition rate for the 2017-18 school year, as reference, the 2016-17 school year tuition for half-day PreK was $3,000 annually per student. Some schools have full-day PreK4 at additional cost. Tuition may be paid in installments. Schools will work with families to establish payment plans.  

If you have further questions about our program, please contact us at 832-328-1051.

What if I already have another child in a KIPP Houston school?

If space is available, brothers or sisters of KIPP Houston Public Schools students who live in each school’s ZIP code zone receive lottery preference. When possible, we work with parents to keep brothers and sisters on the same campus.

Does KIPP offer transportation to and from school?

KIPP offers bus transportation to and from school for all students (except those attending KIPP CONNECT Primary School and KIPP CONNECT Middle School) who live in their school’s ZIP code zones and who live more than 2 miles away from their campus.

Students residing within your school’s ZIP codes have priority riding privileges over those outside the ZIP code zones.  Students residing outside their school’s ZIP code zones are welcome to use the closest existing bus stop if there is adequate space on the bus. Please check with your school’s Bus Coordinator to determine if your student is eligible for bus transportation.

KIPP’s goal is to provide bus stops that help as many families as possible; we may not be able to provide a stop within walking distance from your home. Routes will change each year depending on where the families live in the ZIP code zone. However, as much as possible, we will work to provide a convenient bus stop for your neighborhood.

NOTE: KIPP’s transportation process and bus routes may change in the future. As a result, we strongly suggest that you enroll your child in the KIPP school serving the ZIP Code zone where you live.

May I submit a lottery/interest form after February 10, 2017?

Yes, you may fill out and submit an interest form after February 10, 2017, but it will NOT be included in the March 1, 2017 lottery. Children with intent forms submitted after February 10 are eligible for open seats available post lottery on a first-come, first-served basis and will otherwise be added to the waitlist.