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High School Application Process Updates

The following notice was emailed to all counselors. We would like to share this information with you.

Please note the following important information regarding the upcoming high school notification process:

1. The Office of Access and Enrollment will mail notification letters to parents’ homes on February 26th to inform students whether or not they received an offer from any of the schools to which they applied. (Note — these letters will be for the programs that are centrally managed by OAE: CTE-College and Career Academies, International Baccalaureate, Magnet Schools and Programs, Military Academies, and Selective Enrollment High Schools. Letters for schools that do not fall into these categories will be sent by the individual schools.)

2. Selective Enrollment letters will also contain the students’ final point scores. Students can receive a maximum of one Selective Enrollment offer; if they receive an offer, it will be from the highest-ranked school on their application for which they qualify. Click here for a step-by-step illustration of how the Selective Enrollment selection process works.

3. A second round of selections for Selective Enrollment schools may take place after the first round. A second round will occur only for schools that have seats available after March 11th, the deadline for students to accept a seat offered in the first round. Students who do not receive a first-round offer will automatically be in the applicant pool for a second round. A student who received a first-round offer would have to DECLINE that offer in order to be in the applicant pool for a second round. Please note that most Selective Enrollment High Schools do NOT have a second round.

4. Principal Discretion is a process that allows principals of Selective Enrollment school to fill up to five percent of their available seats through a separate process where they consider students’ personal statements, letters of recommendations, and copies of honors/awards.Students can accept an offer from one school and still apply for Principal Discretion to a different school. The Principal Discretion Handbook — containing the timeline, procedures, and guidelines — will be posted at (under NEWS) starting February 27th. The application will be posted starting March 7th at 9 a.m. — application packets will be accepted from March 7th through March 18th at 5 pm. PLEASE NOTE: Principal Discretion application packages can only be submitted via U.S. mail or hand-delivered to our office, 42 W. Madison St., Garden Level. Application packages will NOT be accepted via fax, email, or GSR.

5. Students who applied to IB High Schools, Magnet High Schools and Programs, and CTE-College and Career Academies will receive a list of Frequently Asked Questions with their notification letters. I will email copies of these FAQs to you, for your information, on Friday.

6. Students can only accept ONE offer from ONE program. For example, if a student receives a Selective Enrollment offer, three IB offers, two Magnet High School offers, and four CTE-College and Career Academy offers, they can only accept ONE of these 10 offers.

7. The following provides an outline of where and when confirmation forms must be submitted. The deadline to submit a confirmation form to accept an offer is March 11th:

Submit to the Office of Access and Enrollment by 5 pm
— Selective Enrollment:
— CTE-College and Career Academies

Submit to the school where the student is accepting the offer by 3 pm:
— Magnet High Schools and Programs
— IB High Schools

Submit to the Service Leadership Academy Network office by 5 pm:
— Military Academies

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call me at 773-553-2105 or email me at

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