Elementary School


Kindergarten News

The Office of Student Enrollment welcomes you to Kindergarten Admissions!

The 2016 New York City Kindergarten Directories are now available online in English and in:

العربية | বাংলা | 中文 | Français | Kreyòl Ayisyen한국어 | Русский | Español | اردو

Print directories for families are now being distributed to elementary schools, pre-k centers, NYCEECs, and Family Welcome Centers.

You can also attend an event to learn about applying to kindergarten. For dates and locations, please visit the Kindergarten Events page.

    Kindergarten Admissions: Overview

    In New York City, children are eligible to apply to kindergarten in the year they turn five. Each winter, kindergarten applications are accepted for the coming school year. Every child is guaranteed a kindergarten placement.

    All community schools in NYC serve students with disabilities and English Language Learners, and all families are encouraged to apply.

    Search for your zoned school. Read the Kindergarten Directory to learn about programs and admissions in the coming weeks. You can also sign up for Kindergarten email updates.

    Kindergarten resources are also available in translation:

    العربية  |  বাংলা  |  中文  |  Français  |  Kreyòl Ayisyen  |  한국어  |  Русский Español  |  اردو 


    Apply to Kindergarten!

    If your child was born in 2011 and you live in NYC, it’s time to start thinking about kindergarten. All children born in 2011 are eligible to attend kindergarten in September 2016.

    Submit an application from December 7, 2015 to January 15, 2016

    All families, including those of students with disabilities and current pre-k students, must submit an application in order to receive a kindergarten offer in the spring.

    Come to an Information Session
    You can attend an information session about the kindergarten admissions process in December. Choice District Fairs will be also be held in District 1 (Lower East Side – Manhattan), District 7 (South Bronx), and District 23 (Brownsville – Brooklyn). 

    Visit Schools and Open Houses
    Attend school tours and open houses. Keep checking the Events page for updates throughout the fall. You can also call schools you are interested in to ask about dates and times for open houses and tours.

    Read the Kindergarten Directories 
    The Kindergarten Directories are available in ten languages online. In early December, you can pick up a copy from your local elementary school or Family Welcome Center. Translated versions will be available in nine languages. 

    Students with Disabilities
    All community schools in NYC serve students with disabilities and English Language Learners, and all families are encouraged to apply.

    Charter Schools
    New York City’s over 200 charter schools give families additional public school options. Review the Charter School Directory to learn more about charter schools in all five boroughs and how to apply.  

    Kindergarten FAQs

    How can I apply?
    You can apply to kindergarten from December 7 to January 15 in one of three ways:

    Interpretation services are available in over 200 languages for the over-the-phone and in-person options. 

    What information will I need to complete an application? 
    When you apply you should prepare the information listed below:

    • Child’s name, date of birth
    • Your name, address, phone number, and email address (if applicable)
    • Information on any siblings who will be enrolled at the school in grades K-5 next year, including name, date of birth, current school, grade, and OSIS number.
    • Child’s current pre-K (if applicable)
    • Child’s home language (if applying to a dual language program)
    • The programs you are applying to, in order of your preference

    What schools should I put on my application?
    You will be able to rank up to 12 programs on your application. You are encouraged to apply to your zoned school and other schools of interest. Options include dual language programs and magnet schools. You cannot apply to Gifted & Talented programs or charter schools using this application. You can contact charter schools directly and visit the Gifted & Talented website for more information on those programs.

    Should I apply to my zoned school?
    Consider applying to your zoned school if you have one. Your zoned school is where you will have the highest priority for admission. Most students attend their zoned school for kindergarten. You do not need to list your zoned school first to receive this priority, unless it really is your top preference. If you don’t know your zoned school, call 311 or visit School Search and enter your home address in the search bar.

    If my child currently attends pre-k at a public school, do I still need to submit a Kindergarten application?
    Yes, all current pre-k students need to apply to Kindergarten to secure a seat for the 2016-2017 school year.

    How can I learn more about the schools I want to apply to? 
    Use a directory. The 2016-17 Kindergarten Directories are currently available online. You can pick one up at a school or a Family Welcome Center in early December.

    Visit schools. Many schools have open houses or provide tours for families. Review the list of elementary school open houses and tours, or contact schools directly for information. Getting a sense of the culture and environment of a school is important for parents and students. It is important to visit schools in person so that you can decide how to rank schools and programs on the application.  

    What are my chances of getting into a school?
    When considering schools, pay attention to their admissions priorities, as listed in the Kindergarten Directory. These are the order in which students are considered for admission. Understanding which priority group your child would be in for a given school and which priority groups the school was able to accommodate last year is important to understand your child’s likelihood of admission. 

    Are kindergarten seats given away first-come, first-served?
    Admission is not first-come, first-served. All applications received by the deadline are treated the same, according to schools’ admissions priorities. All families who submit a kindergarten application by January 15, 2016 will receive a placement offer in March. Please take your time.

    I live in District 1, 7 or 23, what does it mean to live in a choice district?
    Districts 1, 7, and 23 are choice districts, which means there are no zoned schools. Families should apply to kindergarten in these districts the same way as everyone else. See the events page for upcoming choice district fairs. 

    When will I get my child’s kindergarten offer?
    All families that submit an application by the January 15 deadline will get an offer letter in March.

    How will I be able to accept my Kindergarten offer?
    You can accept your offer by pre-registering at the school in person. You will need to bring documentation of your child’s age and proof of residence. 

    After I receive my child's kindergarten offer, how do I get on a school's kindergarten waitlist?
    You’re automatically placed on the waitlist for all schools that you ranked higher than the school where your child got an offer. These schools will contact families on the waitlist directly if they can offer the student a placement. Waitlists stay open until mid-October.
    Please note, this waitlist policy is new for District 1 schools in 2016.

    Still have questions? Contact the Office of Student Enrollment at 718-935-2009.