Indexing the Lottery

It’s springtime for DC–that means cherry blossoms, budget hearings before the council, and our very own public school lottery, whose results will be released on April 1.

Starting off the season, WAMU ran a story of parents abandoning DCPS elementaries at 4th grade to opt for charters that start at 5th. (I seem to have heard this before–oh yeah, here.)

Not to be outdone, during the council’s performance oversight hearing for the charter board last week, education committee chair David Grosso and charter board director Scott Pearson shared their joy over the council’s unanimous passage of the Military Installation Public Charter School Amendment Act, giving some charters preference in the lottery for admitting children of service members.

So let’s take a look at a few numbers about the lottery:

20,349: Number of DC kids who took part in the lottery starting in December 2015, for the current school year.

23: Percentage of the total DC public student population (85,403) that number represents.

2 hours, 26 minutes, 5 seconds: Time at which, during the charter board performance oversight hearing on March 3, David Grosso noted that the council had heard testimony the prior day from My School DC that “most parents, believe it or not, put their child in the school that is closest to their home.”

11: Number of minutes into a 12-minute WHUR radio spot about this year’s lottery when Cat Peretti, director of My School DC (which runs the lottery and sponsors the school choice fair Ed Fest), first discusses feeder patterns, boundaries, and the fact that you do not have to enter the lottery to secure a seat at your by right school.

0: Number of places on the information page for Ed Fest that explains anything about boundaries, feeder patterns, or by right schools, despite the fact that a plurality of DC public school students attend by right schools.

0: Number of mentions of boundaries, feeder patterns, or by right schools on the press release from the mayor on the 2015 lottery.

9,250,000: Number of hits I got when I searched via Google “ed fest dc 2015.”

108: Number of hits per DC public school student that this represents.

0: Number of lists of the members of the Common Lottery Board, which oversees the lottery in DC, available in the first 100 pages obtained via a Google search of “common lottery board member dc.”

1: Web page obtained in the same search that listed names of the members of the board–dated April 10, 2015.

0: Audits of the lottery and all its weighting and preferences.

2 thoughts on “Indexing the Lottery

  1. This is a subject I’ve been wanting to delve into so, I really appreciate all the info you’ve brought together in this post. Thanks for making it available to all of educationdc’s followers.


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