Waitlists

Happening Now

Waitlists for 3-K, pre-K, and kindergarten admissions are closed. Middle and high school waitlists are closed.

Learn About Waitlists

Waitlists are a way for programs or schools to fill any open seats after offers are released and before school starts in the fall. Being on a waitlist means your child does not have an offer to that program, and not all students on waitlists will receive a waitlist offer.

  • Your child's offer letter will include information about any programs where your child is waitlisted. They are automatically on the waitlist for any program(s) listed higher on your child's application than the program where they got an offer.
    • For example, if your child got an offer to their third-choice program, they would automatically be on the waitlist for their first- and second-choice programs.
    • If your child got an offer to their first-choice program, they would not be on any waitlists.
    • If you would like to remain on a waitlist, there is nothing else you need to do.
  • After offers are available and when waitlists open, you can also use MySchools.nyc to
    • Add your child to additional waitlists (this is optional)
    • See where your child is on any waitlist
    • Add or remove your child from waitlists
    • Accept or decline a waitlist offer, if you receive one
  • Schools will contact you directly if they are able to make your child a waitlist offer. 

Questions? We're here to help! Contact a Family Welcome Center to set up a MySchools account or get support with waitlists.

Click or tap on the sections below to learn how and when waitlist offers are made for specific admissions processes, and how to accept or decline an offer.

3-K, Pre-K, and Kindergarten Waitlists

  • After the application period closes, you can still add your child to programs' waitlists.
  • Pre-K and kindergarten offers are made in the spring. 3-K offers are made in the spring or summer.
  • After offers are released, programs use their waitlists throughout the spring and summer to fill open seats. Programs will contact you directly if they are able to make your child a waitlist offer.

How Children Get Waitlist Offers

If a program has an open seat, that program will use their waitlist to make additional offers. Waitlist offers are based on the same admissions priorities used to make original offers. Learn more about admissions priorities:

  • For 3-K, see the "Learn How Children Get Offers" section of the 3-K page.
  • For pre-K, see the "Learn How Children Get Offers" section of the Pre-K page.
  • For kindergarten, see the "Learn How Students Get Offers" section of the Kindergarten page.

If You Get a Waitlist Offer

A school or program will contact you directly if they are able to make you a waitlist offer.

Please note that you can only have one accepted offer. Accepting your waitlist offer means declining your child’s previous offer: you must choose between them within the timeline provided.

Accepting Offers and Waitlist Offers

  • Even if you hope to receive a waitlist offer from another program, be sure to accept your offer and pre-register by the deadline provided—this will secure your child's seat at that program. Doing so will not affect their chances of getting a waitlist offer to a program you prefer.
  • If your child gets a waitlist offer, accept and pre-register for that offer by the deadline provided.
  • Use the checklist at the bottom of the 3-K, Pre-K, or Kindergarten page to learn what documentation you'll need to pre-register for any offer.

Middle and High School Waitlists

Middle and high school waitlists are now closed. August 13 was the last date that schools could make waitlist offers to students.

  • If you did not receive a waitlist offer by August 13, your current offer is your final high school offer.
  • If you need an emergency medical or safety transfer, you can contact a Family Welcome Center.
  • If your child is entering middle school and has a zoned or continuing school that you’d prefer to their current offer, please contact that school directly.

The FAQ that follows provides more information about how waitlists work when they are open.

What are waitlists?

Middle and high schools use waitlists to fill any open seats after offers are released and before school starts in the fall. Being on a waitlist means your child does NOT have an offer to that program.

  • Not all programs will have available seats, so not all programs will make waitlist offers.
  • Not all students on waitlists will receive a waitlist offer.
  • If a program can make you a waitlist offer, they will contact you directly.
  • Unlike all other middle and high school programs, the Specialized High Schools do NOT use waitlists. 

Which middle and high schools have waitlists?

Every program that you can list on your application has a waitlist, but many middle and high schools will not have any open seats and therefore will not make any offers to students on their waitlist. Please note that the nine Specialized High Schools do not have waitlists.

I’m on a program’s waitlist. Does this mean I will get an offer to that program?

Not necessarily. High schools will only make waitlist offers if they have open seats to fill. Being on a waitlist means your child does not have an offer to that program, and not all students on waitlists will receive a waitlist offer.

Where am I automatically waitlisted?

Your child is automatically on the waitlist for any program they listed higher on their application than the program where they received an offer (or to all programs on their application if your offer is to a program not listed there).

  • For instance, if you receive an offer to your third-choice program, you will be automatically on the waitlist for your second- and first-choice programs.
  • Please read the last page of your offer letter or check MySchools.nyc to see where you are automatically waitlisted, if applicable.
  • If you’ve received an offer to your first-choice program, you are not automatically on any waitlists.
  • If you would like to remain on a waitlist, there is nothing else you need to do.

How do I add myself to waitlists? (Optional)

When waitlists open, you can also add your child to any additional waitlists of any programs they are eligible to attend by doing one of the following:

Please note that not all students are eligible to add themselves to the waitlists of all programs.

Zoned Schools

If you have a zoned middle or high school and you did not include this zoned program on your application, you can add yourself to the zoned program’s waitlist.

Continuing Schools

If your child’s current school serves grades K-8, K-12, or 6-12 and you received an offer to a different school, you can change your mind and remain at your current school: just add your child to the waitlist of their current school and your child is guaranteed to get an offer there. If you accept a waitlist offer to your child’s current school, you will give up your current offer.

Is there a limit to how many waitlists I can be on? 

There is no limit to how many programs’ waitlists a student can be on. 

How is my position on a waitlist determined?

  • For waitlists you are automatically on, your child’s unique position on each is based on several admissions factors.
    • These factors include admissions priorities, admissions methods, and randomly assigned numbers or ranked numbers (high school only) used during the matching process, as described at MySchools.nyc and either schools.nyc.gov/Middle or schools.nyc.gov/HSGuide.
    • For high school programs where applicants are ranked based on screens or auditions, students will be ordered based on their rank within their priority group.
  • For waitlists you add yourself to, your child’s position on these waitlists will be determined by the same factors, but your child’s waitlist position for this program will be after other students in the same priority group who listed that program on their high school application.

Your child’s position on a waitlist can go up or down at any time due to other students joining the waitlist or receiving waitlist offers.

How do I see my position on a waitlist?

While waitlists are open, you can log in to MySchools.nyc to see your child’s position on any waitlist, at any time. You can also talk to your child’s school counselor or contact a Family Welcome Center to get this information.

Are there separate waitlists for general education (GE) and Students with Disabilities (SWD) seats?

Each middle school and high school program has seats for general education students and seats for students with disabilities. There is a separate waitlist for each group of seats. This means that:

  • If your child is in the SWD seat group, they will be on the waitlist for students with disabilities.
  • If your child is in the GE seat group, they will be on the waitlist for general education students.

Your MySchools account will show which seat group (and waitlist) your child is in. This is not something you are able to choose or edit. Learn more at schools.nyc.gov/Middle and schools.nyc.gov/HSGuide.

What happens if I get a waitlist offer?

If a school is able to make you a waitlist offer before waitlists close, they will contact you directly: you will then have approximately one week to accept or decline that waitlist offer. If you accept a waitlist offer, it replaces your child’s previous offer. If your child does not receive a waitlist offer, they will keep their original offer.

Please note that you can only have one accepted offer. Accepting your waitlist offer means declining your child’s current offer: you must choose between them within the timeline provided.

Need support with middle or high school waitlists?

We’re here to help!
  • Watch the Offers and Waitlists MySchools Tutorial on our high school page or middle school page.
  • Speak with your child's school counselor or Family Welcome Center staff; if you don't have a MySchools account, we can help you set one up.
  • Call us at 718-935-2009
  • For specific waitlists support, email waitlists@schools.nyc.gov. We can:
    • Provide information, such as where your child is on a specific waitlist or where they are currently waitlisted.
    • Add or remove your child from waitlists.
    • Help you accept or decline an offer.

Offers and Waitlists MySchools Tutorial

Watch our MySchools tutorial to learn how to check your child's position on any middle or high school waitlist, add them to additional waitlists, and accept a waitlist offer. Please note that these functions are only available while waitlists are open.

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