Home > In the schools > School choice season is now

School choice season is now

Metro Atlanta’s school systems include a decent choice of magnet, theme and charter schools. If you want your child to attend one next year, it’s time to gather information and submit applications.

Here’s a quick round-up of some of the school choices and their admissions procedures. Note: Please don’t consider this to be a complete list. I’ve tracked down what information I could, but there are other schools not on this list that deserve consideration. If you’re seriously considering school choice, I recommend that you visit your school system’s page under the “Gifted Ed in Local Schools” tab on this site. From there, you can explore the web sites for the specific school(s) that interest you and contact them for more information.

DeKalb County Schools will hold its School Choice Expo this Saturday, Jan. 21, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Mall at Stonecrest in Lithonia. Registration for a few DeKalb schools opens later this month, but for most schools, lottery registration will begin in March.

I had a hard time finding information on the Clayton County Schools web site, but in poking around I found that Fine Arts Magnet High School is taking applications now. Rex Mill Middle School also is accepting applications from current 5th graders — their deadline is Feb. 24.

In Fulton County, you have until Jan. 23 to apply to Riverwood International Charter School. Once again this year, Riverwood is accepting applications only from Fulton County residents — the non-resident, tuition paying option won’t be available for 2012-13. The deadline for North Springs Charter High School is Jan. 30. A staff member at North Springs said residents of Fulton, DeKalb and Cobb can apply, although there may not be spaces available for students from outside Fulton. Applications for the lottery are being taken now for Ridgeview Charter School, Fulton’s IB middle school. Their deadline is Feb. 16, 2012. Applications to the math and science magnet at Westlake High School are due Feb. 9. The visual and performing arts magnet at Tri-Cities High School is holding auditions this Saturday,  and also on Feb. 25.

Magnet schools in Cobb County are no longer taking applications, which were due in early December.

(I was starting to feel guilty about not being timely with information on Cobb and Fulton schools, until I realized I published this post back in October 2011. Whew.)

Gwinnett County students can apply to the Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology (GSMST) through Feb. 3, 2012.

The City of Atlanta Public Schools system doesn’t offer school choice via a magnet or charter structure, but it does allow student transfers. Applications for transfers are generally allowed in the spring, toward the end of the school year.

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