Wait Pool for SY 2024-25

About SFUSD's Wait Pool Application Round

What is a Wait Pool?

A wait pool is an application period for students to enroll for 2024-2025. Students may submit a Wait Pool application for ONE school only. The deadline to submit a Wait Pool application is Wednesday, August 7. 

Once all Wait Pool applications are received, SFUSD conducts an assignment run to place all students into an ordered waiting list. Applications are put into order based on SFUSD's student assignment policy, using tiebreakers and random numbers, just like in the Main Round and Round 2. Wait Pool requests are not sorted based on who applied first; all applications that are submitted by the August 7 deadline will enter the assignment run together to be sorted.

Even though the Wait Pool period for school year 2024-25 runs through August 7, we suggest that families submit a Wait Pool application by July 8. After that date, New to SF Enrollment begins, and new applicants can immediately fill any open seats that become available if there are no Wait Pool requests. 

FAQs last updated on May 8, 2024.

When will I find out if I receive my Wait Pool school? 

SFUSD will contact families (by email and phone) starting around August 12, 2024 through August 30, 2024 if they have received their Wait Pool school. Everyone who submitted a Wait Pool application will receive a notification at the start of the notification period — either with an immediate offer of enrollment, or with an update about their waitlist status.

SFUSD will make multiple attempts to contact families when an offer becomes available. Please wait for staff to contact you — we will not be able to answer questions about the Wait Pool because we will be busy contacting families. Once we notify you that you have received an offer to your Wait Pool school, you will have a limited amount of time to decide whether you want to accept or decline the offer.

If you do not receive an email or phone call during the notification period (ending August 30), that means you did not receive your Wait Pool school. After August 30, Wait Pools are disbanded. Any remaining requests are invalidated.

If I receive my Wait Pool school, do I automatically lose my current school?

No. Unlike in other application rounds, if you submit a Wait Pool application and a space becomes available for your student, we will not automatically change their enrollment. We will make multiple attempts to contact you to receive your decision to Accept or Decline. 

  • If you Accept the offer for the Wait Pool school, your student’s enrollment will be changed at that point. 

  • If you Decline the offer, your student’s current enrollment will remain valid, and they could continue attending the school they were assigned to previously. 

  • If we do not receive a response from you within 24 hours, you may lose the opportunity to Accept the Wait Pool offer.

How do I apply for the Wait Pool?

Applicants will need to submit a completed application between April 20 and August 7, 2024 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time online; by email or to the office by 4:30 p.m. Pacific Time. 

If this is your first time applying for 2024-2025:

  1. Complete the SFUSD online application or the paper TK-12 General Application and include all required documents.
  2. Submit your completed application and required documents by the deadline online, by email, or in a drop-off box.

If you have submitted a Round 2 application, you must wait until you receive your Round 2 assignment the week of May 27 before applying again. Don't worry — you won't miss out on any of the Wait Pool action. Applications submitted earlier do not have an advantage over applications submitted later.

If you have already participated in Main Round and/or Round 2 for 2024-2025:

  1. Complete the Wait Pool Application either via the online application or on paper: English | 中文 | Español. You can also pick up a paper application at our 555 Franklin Street office.
  2. Submit your application by the deadline online, by email, or in a drop-off box.

Ways to submit: 

  • Online: Use your ParentVUE account (select the "online forms" tab) OR the Online Forms Portal
  • Email: Email your documents to enrollinschool@sfusd.edu. If you are sending a scan or photograph of your documents, please make sure your images are clear and legible to avoid any delays. 
  • Drop Off: Drop off your documents at one of the following locations: 
    • Enrollment Center. See office locations and hours. 
    • After business hours, drop off your application in a secure dropbox at the SFUSD Office lobby at 555 Franklin Street (just inside the front door).

Who is eligible to apply for the Wait Pool?

  • Any student may choose to take part in SFUSD's wait pool process, even those who applied for Main Round, Round 2, New-to-SF Enrollment or Open Enrollment. It does not matter whether the applicant already has already  accepted an assignment to a different school or not.
  • However, if you submitted a Round 2 application, please wait to see your Round 2 assignment before applying for the Wait Pool. 
  • Once you have received a wait pool offer, you are no longer eligible to participate in a wait pool for another school.

How will I know which schools have a Wait Pool?

It can be helpful to know which schools have a Wait Pool and which ones don't, because schools with Wait Pool requests are generally not available during Open Enrollment. You will be able to find the list of schools with active Wait Pool requests on this webpage, and you will be able to see the count of wait pool requests for each school, grade, and pathway. The lists will be made available and updated on:

Can I see information about the number of wait pool applications from prior years, and the number of applicants who received their wait pool school?

Yes. You can see information about the number of wait pool applications for each school, grade, and program in this spreadsheet: SFUSD Historical Wait Pool Offer Rates (Public)

The information in the spreadsheet is based on data from 2021-22 through 2023-24, and shows the average number of applications per year during that time, as well as the average offer rate (the percentage of applicants who received an offer during the wait pool notification period to enroll at that school). 

IMPORTANT: this information from prior years can be used to help you think about the likelihood of receiving an offer to your preferred school-grade-program this year. But you should not interpret this information as a guarantee about what definitely will or will not happen this year.

SFUSD cannot guarantee that Wait Pool results in the current or future year will be similar to results from prior years — each year is distinct, and results depend on individual families' choices.

You are able to see an “Availability Estimate”, which is a formula-based estimate about the likelihood of receiving an offer. That estimate may not be valid or relevant in all cases, especially when there have been few or no wait pool applications in prior years.

If you need help interpreting this information, please contact the Enrollment Center. 


Why should I apply before July 8?

On July 8, New to SF Enrollment begins, and any school/grade/program without any Wait Pool requests will be available for new applicants to enroll in immediately. Applying before that date is a good way to make your choice known before available seats start getting filled. However, applying earlier does not give an individual applicant any advantage over other applicants who apply later.

How do I cancel or change my Wait Pool request?

If you wish to cancel your wait pool request or need to change it after submitting it, email enrollinschool@sfusd.edu as soon as possible. Please remember that once you have received your wait pool assignment, you are no longer eligible to participate in a wait pool for another school.

Is there a late waitlist, after the August 7 deadline?

Yes, there is a late waitlist. After August 7, applicants who missed the Wait Pool application deadline can join the late waitlist for one school. Additionally, Wait pool applicants who wish to change their requested school after the deadline can choose to cancel their previous request and join the late waitlist for a different school, instead.

In either case, applicants must speak with an Enrollment Counselor to join the late waitlist. The late waitlist is first come, first served  — no tiebreakers or random numbers are used, and there is no opportunity to request an appeal. If you join a late waitlist, you are joining the bottom of that list. Students in the late waitlist will only receive an offer after everyone who submitted an on-time wait pool application has received an offer, which is not guaranteed to happen. On-time wait pool applicants will always have priority over late applicants. 

Students who already received a wait pool offer are not eligible to submit another request in the late waitlist, regardless of whether they accepted the original offer or declined it. Interdistrict applicants are eligible to participate in the late waitlist, but will not get priority over applicants who live in San Francisco.

This page was last updated on July 12, 2024