Enrollment FAQ

Can my child attend a Berkeley Public School?
Children who reside in Berkeley may attend Berkeley Public Schools.  In order to ensure placement for all Berkeley children, we need three proofs of residence to start the admission process (see Required Enrollment Documentation).  If your child does not reside in Berkeley you may request an inter-district transfer from your school district.  Inter-district transfers are considered after Berkeley residents are placed.

What elementary school is my student going to attend?
Elementary schools are divided into three attendance zones:

Northwest Zone: Berkeley Arts Magnet, Jefferson, Rosa Parks and Thousand Oaks
Central Zone: Berkeley Arts Magnet, Cragmont, Malcolm X, Oxford and Washington
Southeast Zone: Emerson, John Muir, LeConte (grades 1-5) and Malcolm X

New! District-wide: LeConte Two Way Immersion Elementary School (open to incoming 2013 kindergarten students from all Berkeley attendance zones)

Your child will be assigned to an elementary school in his/her attendance zone or LeConte Elementary Two Way Immersion.

Where do I start with the admissions process?
Review our Steps to Enrollment webpage for detailed enrollment information or come to the Admissions Office to collect your enrollment packet and speak with one of our knowledgeable staff. School admissions is not handled at our individual schools.

What are the hours of the Admissions Office?
Hours: Monday – Friday | 8:00AM – 4:00 PM
Except Tuesday | 8:00AM – 3:00 PM.

What percentage of families gets their first choice of placement? 
About 72 percent of our families get their first choice of school.

What if I am unhappy with my student’s placement school?  Is there an appeal process?
You may request to place your student on a wait list for one or more schools. Student assignment appeals are limited to whether the student assignment was followed.

Is there sibling priority for school placement?
Yes. Assigning siblings to the same school is a priority for the District and all attempts are made to assign siblings to the same school.  We want our families to be fully engaged in their school community.

What proof of Berkeley residency is required for admission?
Three approved proofs of Berkeley residency must be shown at the time of enrollment. Please see the Required Enrollment Documentation webpage for full details.

What if I have moved to a new address?
Once you move, you must provide the Admissions Office with three proofs of Berkeley residency.

What if I do not live in Berkeley and want my children to attend a BUSD school?
Non-Berkeley residents will be considered after all Berkeley residents are placed and if there is space available in the requested grade.  Permission for an inter-district transfer must first be granted  from the school district in the city where the child resides before being considered for placement in a Berkeley Public School.

If I don’t speak English, who can help me in admissions?
Spanish speaking staff are available in our office.  In addition, a multi-lingual phone line is available to provide immediate interpretation in other languages.

How long does the process take for my student to be placed?
If an admissions application is made on or before the first Friday in February deadline, your child’s school assignment letter will be sent home by mid-March.  Please be sure to inform the Admissions Office of any change of address or phone number so you do not miss critical information about your child’s enrollment.

What if I enroll late in the year? Is the process the same or are most spaces already filled?
Families have the greatest chance of receiving one of their top school choices if they apply for admission on or before the first Friday in February.  School placement is always made within the confines of our student assignment policy and late registration reduces the likelihood that space is available at your schools of choice.