Student Assignment Policy

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SFUSD Student Assignment Policy

The SFUSD Student Assignment Policy uses school choice as a way to help create diverse learning environments. Students applying for a SFUSD schools submit a preferred or ranked list of choices. If there are no space limitations, students are assigned to their highest ranked choice.

If more students request a particular school than there are seats available, then the assignment process uses a series of preferences, called tiebreakers, and random numbers to assign students to the limited number of openings. Students not assigned to any one of their choices because of space limitations are assigned to a school with available seats closest to the student’s home.

How Students Are Assigned in SFUSD

  1. Families apply. After researching schools, families list their school choices in order of preference and submit an application. There is no limit to the number of choices that can be listed, but the order does matter.
  2. All school choices are matched based on available seats. Each school, grade, and program has a set number of seats. If the number of applications is more than the number of seats, then tiebreakers and random numbers are used to make offers.
  3. Tiebreakers” are used when the number of requests are greater than the number of available seats. Random numbers will be used for school assignments if tiebreakers do not resolve ties, or if there are no tiebreakers.
  4. Non-choice assignments. Due to space limitations, not all students will be assigned to one of their choices. Those students will be assigned to a school with available seats closest to the student’s home.

Non-Choice Assignments

Students who cannot be assigned to one of their choices because of a lack of space will be
assigned to a school that was not listed as a choice. These are the SFUSD policy guidelines that
determine non-choice assignments:

  • Students who attend an SFUSD school will receive an offer to their current school if there is space in the requested grade.
  • Students applying to grades K-5 will receive an offer to their attendance area school if space is available, or to the nearest school with openings.
  • Students applying to 6th grade will receive an offer to their feeder middle school if space is available, or to the school closest to their home with openings.
  • Students in grades 7-12 will receive an offer to the school closest to their home with openings if space is not available at their current school.
  • Students applying for a SFUSD language program can request to be assigned to the closest language program with openings (on the application), instead of the closest school with openings.
  • Students who only requested Lowell and/or RASOTA high schools, but did not get assigned to those schools, must contact the EPC to request other SFUSD high schools.