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More families enroll early


More families are realizing that with CMSD, they can choose their children’s schools and that they should act quickly for the best chance of securing their first selection.

During a two-month early enrollment period that ended March 16, choices were submitted for 3,061 students, an increase of 623 from last year and 1,011 from 2014.

“More families are making more quality choices earlier than ever before,” said Kevin Alin, executive director of school choice and enrollment. “That helps us plan for the school year and better serve students.”

CMSD is a “portfolio district,” with a growing number of school models that allow families to find the best fit. Students may attend any school in the District if space is available and, in a few cases, they meet admissions requirements.

Campus International, which will add eighth grade next year, reached capacity a across all levels during the early enrollment period, as did two high schools – Max S. Hayes and MC2STEM – for their incoming classes. Lotteries were held to fill available seats and waiting lists have been started.

In the past, only Campus International, an International Baccalaureate school based at Cleveland State University, required a lottery.

The most sought-after schools were, in order of finish: Max S. Hayes, Campus International, Bard High School Early College Cleveland, the Cleveland High School for Digital Arts and the John Marshall School of Information Technology.

Eighth-graders moving on to high school accounted for more than half of the students enrolled. Another 308 were signed up for kindergarten, well above totals at this point in previous years.

Nearly 600 of the students are from families that are new or returning to CMSD. That bodes well for a District that saw enrollment increase this school year for the first time in decades.

The District recruited students with strategies that included posting notices at public computer terminals in libraries and targeting stable or growing neighborhoods with mailings and fliers. Eighth-graders and families attended an annual high school choice fair at Cleveland State University’s Wolstein Center.

A new online portal was set up and, for the first time, families new to the District could use the site instead of registering in person.

Registration for the 2016-17 school year continues. To choose a school go to