School Choice

Schools and Programs

Various overviews are available to learn more about school and program choices.

Click HERE to Find Your School Assignment

Greenville County Schools is a “choice” district, offering quality schools at all levels across the school system. Approximately 15% of the school system’s 76,000 students attend school on choice.

Students are assigned to a school (home-based) based on the address where their custodial parent/guardian resides. School assignments are listed by subdivision/multi-family dwelling and home address on the GCS website at http://public.greenville.k12.sc.us/. Parents may request that their children attend another school through Change in Assignment Choice and/or applying to the school system’s Magnet Academies.

Change in Assignment Choice - Second Window

Space by Grade Level Will Later Determine Assignments

UPDATE
Beginning Tuesday, January 17, 2017, Change in Assignment Choice requests can be submitted by going to the number one choice school, securing a form and completing it at the school. You may select up to three schools on the request form in priority order. This form will be date and time stamped at the school. Forms submitted on January 17, 2017 or later will be listed in date and time stamp order of receipt on the requested school’s waiting list after all students on the school choice lottery waiting list.

Lottery results provide the order of selection for each student for each requested school. Parents can access their student’s information by using their choice form number. Students’ names are not listed.

The lottery order, step three of the process, does not guarantee placement. Space by grade level will later determine school choice assignments. That information will be determined based on student projections for each school by grade. Student choice assignments will be determined and assignment letters sent to all parents no later than Friday, March 31, 2017.

Change in Assignment Choice does not impact the process for applying to the district’s 11 magnet academies and Sara Collins Elementary. Those schools are not included in the Change in Assignment Choice process. Three other schools have variations in the assignment/choice process. At some schools, assignments are limited due to available space.

  • Dr. Phinnize J. Fisher Middle School
  • Sterling School – There is a First Choice geocode assignment area, as well as the Change in Assignment Choice Process. Students for The Charles Townes Center are selected using Gifted and Talented criteria.
  • Wade Hampton High School – Students selected for the Fine Arts Center may request to attend. Other students may attend through the Change in Assignment Choice Process.

(Note: Parents who have misplaced their choice form number will need to go to the school where they completed the request form and provide proper identification to receive a copy of their request form.)

Questions? Email planning@greenville.k12.sc.us or call 355-7266 or 355-7263.

Change in Assignment Lottery Process

Step 1: Returning Students Declare Intent - By Wednesday, November 30, 2016, parents with a student(s) currently attending a school on Change in Assignment Choice must declare their intent for their child to return to their choice school for the following school year. Parents are sent a renewal form by their child’s school.

Step 2: Choice Lottery Window - From December 5-16, 2016, parents/guardians complete a choice form for up to three schools for their child and submit it at their number one choice school. Parents receive a form number to later check the lottery results. Order of receipt of form during lottery window does not impact selection. (Note: Parents of 5K students for 2017-18 should submit choice requests during the Choice Lottery Window, and not wait until kindergarten registration in January.)

Step 3: Lottery Results Posted - No later than Wednesday, February 15, 2017, lottery results by grade for each school will be posted on the GCS website. Results provide the order of lottery selection by grade for each school. Names are not listed. Parents access results by using their choice form number. Space by grade level will later determine the choice assignments. Students selecting a school as a higher choice have priority over students selecting the school as a lower choice.

Order of Lottery Assignments (Based on space availability)

  • Students with siblings who will return to the requested school on Change in Assignment Choice for the upcoming school year have first priority of assignment to their #1 choice school.
  • Students from overcrowded schools may be given the next priority. Decisions made yearly.
  • All other students residing within the school system and children of full-time district employees have the next priority.
  • Students residing outside the school system are the last group to be considered.

Step 4: Student Assignment Letters - No later than Friday, March 31, 2017, student choice assignments will be determined. Student assignment letters are sent to parents. For students currently being served in a Greenville County school, the letter will be sent home with the students. Others will be mailed. The school assignment on the letter will reflect whether the choice request was granted at this time.  Once a student is assigned to a requested choice school, lower school choice requests are automatically withdrawn from the lottery system.

Step 5: Waiting Lists Established - Students who are not assigned to a requested choice school will be placed on a waiting list for each requested school. If space becomes available at the requested school(s), students on the waiting list are assigned based on their established ranking from the waiting list. This process will continue through the first ten days of the 2017-18 school year.

Change in Assignment Choice

  • Parents must provide transportation to/from school attending through Change in Assignment Choice.
  • Attendance at a school other than home-based may render a student ineligible for athletic participation for one calendar year as determined by the SC High School League.
  • Change in Assignment Choice requests for students qualifying for services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or for accommodations under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act will be considered on an equal basis if the requested school provides an appropriate education in accordance with the student’s Individualized Education Program or Accommodation Plan, is appropriately accessible, and has space in the program the student requires.
  • All Change in Assignment Choice requests are filled from lottery results if space is available; otherwise students are placed on waiting list.

If questions, contact: Student Assignment Office at 355-7266 or 355-7263 or email Planning@greenville.k12.sc.us.

Magnet Academies

Magnet Applications Accepted (First Round): Tuesday, November 1 through Wednesday, December 7 (noon)

Parent Response by: Friday, December 16, 2016.

Each of the school system’s 11 magnet academies offer an academic theme or focus that allows students to explore a special interest, gift, talent and/or skill at the elementary, middle and high school levels. Applications for the following school year are accepted each year beginning in November. Magnet slots are limited at each magnet academy. Applications are available on the GCS website and from each magnet academy.

Students may apply to more than one magnet academy. Applications are scored based on four criteria: attendance, discipline, grade average (student interview in Grades K-5, 1, 2), and a student statement indicating why the student would like to attend the magnet academy. Students who apply and qualify during the first application period have a greater chance of being offered a slot than those students who apply and qualify in later rounds.

Siblings of magnet students who will return the following school year to the school have priority of acceptance in Round 1. If magnet slots are available after all siblings who have qualified are placed, non-siblings will be accepted beginning with the highest to the lowest qualifying scores until the school’s assigned magnet slots have been filled. A lottery system is used when there are more qualifying students than available slots. Qualifying students not selected for a magnet academy are placed on a waiting list.

Magnet Academies

  • Admission is open to all eligible students and students may apply to more than one magnet academy.
  • Magnet slots at each school are limited.
  • Students who apply and qualify during the first application period have a greater chance of being offered a slot than students who apply and qualify in later rounds.
  • Qualifying siblings of magnet students who will return the following school year to the school have priority of acceptance in Round 1.

Magnet Academy Information

Choices Within Schools

Some schools offer "choices" within the school such as single-gender and multi-level classes as well as an instructional focus. Examples of an instructional focus are engineering at A.J. Whittenberg Elementary, science and health at Monarch Elementary, and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses offered at various schools.  Sara Collins Elementary's IB program is by application, qualification and acceptance. Individual school websites offer additional information about specific school programs.

Additional Choices

The district's four Career Technology Centers offer courses for high school students in a variety of career paths. The Fine Arts Center, located at Wade Hampton High School, accepts auditions for enrollment in various fields of the arts. Acceptance at the Fine Arts Center allow CIA Request acceptance beside Wade Hampton High School for core academic classes.

The Charles Townes Center, located at Sterling School, offers for qualifying students in grades three through eight, an advanced academic curriculum. All high schools offer college preparatory, honors and advanced placement coursework. Sterling School is a total choice elementary program for students residing in identified "first choice" geocodes surrounding the school and then to students whose parents reside outside the "first choice" geocodes.

No students in Greenville County Schools shall be denied equal opportunity to participate in any district program or activity on the basis of race, sex, religion, marital status or national origin, and no student shall be denied a free, appropriate education on account of any handicapping condition.

Charter Schools

Charter Schools are independent public schools that are nonsectarian, nonreligious, nonhome-based, and nonprofit.