Charter schools are tuition-free public schools open to all students. They operate independently of a school district through a contract (“charter”) agreed upon by a local school district, county office of education, or the state. The charter sets goals for which the school will be held accountable. In turn, charter school leaders and teachers are given the freedom and flexibility to try new approaches to education. Charter schools have unique models and offer an option for families seeking a different educational experience for their children. All charter schools in West Contra Costa are run by not-for-profit organizations.
Charter schools are open to all students. Charter schools celebrate diversity and welcome all students, regardless of their background or special needs. Like all public schools, charter schools are required to enroll and serve students with disabilities, and are committed to providing high quality and legally compliant special education services to any student with disabilities. California's SB 75 prohibits charters from discouraging any pupil from seeking to enroll, or encouraging existing pupil to dis-enroll for any reason including academic underperformance, EL status, socioeconomics, disability, foster status, homelessness, race or ethnicity, gender identity or sexual orientation. This applies even when a parent or student merely seeks information about the school (e.g., attends informational meeting or picks up enrollment materials), applies for enrollment, and when actually enrolled.
Charter schools in California are required to hire credentialed teachers for all core academic subjects.
Twelve out of 14 charter schools in West Contra Costa are participating in EnrollWCC . This means you can use the common application to apply to any or all of these schools. Click here to see a full list of participating schools.
The following schools are not participating in EnrollWCC: Manzanita Charter Middle School and Voices West Contra Costa. Each school above has its own application process and timeline. For more information, contact each school directly.
All interested students must submit an application, which asks for basic student information such as name, grade level, and contact information. When a charter school receives more applications than space allows, a random lottery is held to determine enrollment. After the lottery is held, if a child receives an enrollment offer, they must confirm enrollment with the school and complete additional paperwork, such as emergency contact information and immunization records. If a child does not receive an enrollment offer because all spaces are filled, they are automatically added to the school’s waitlist.
If more students apply to a school than there are spaces available, each school will conduct a lottery (March 4, 2021) to determine which applicants will be offered admission. Each school has its own admissions priorities and waitlist process. Each school will contact students on the waitlist if space becomes available.
Because there can be more applications to a school than openings at that school, enrollment is not guaranteed. Many charter schools have waitlists and enroll more students as additional openings become available. Charter school waitlists cannot roll over from year to year, based on state law. Waitlists remain in place through the end of each school year. For example, if an application is submitted for the 2021-22 school year, a child’s name will be on the waitlist only until the end of this year. The following year, everyone has an equal chance when reapplying.
You can apply to as many charter schools as you like that serve your student’s grade level. Applying to more charter schools increases your overall chances of receiving an enrollment offer.
No. However, applying to more than one school will increase your overall chances of receiving an enrollment offer because you will enter the lottery at multiple schools. It will have no impact on your application to any particular school.
Log into SchoolMint using the account you created for your initial application. For step-by-step instructions, review this handout. If you have forgotten your username or password, see instructions to recover it. Please avoid creating a new SchoolMint account, as duplicates can cause complications in the system.
We recommend that you apply to all schools that you might be interested in before the February application deadline. After that date, you will still be able to apply to other schools in the Round 2 application process. However, by that time, all schools will have already run their lotteries, and most of them will only be accepting applications for their waitlist. Applying to multiple schools before the February deadline is in your best interest, as it will have no impact on your application to School X while increasing your overall chances of receiving an enrollment offer.
For applications to the 2021-22 school year, we recommend applying as soon as possible. As long as your application is received by the February deadline, your chances of admission will not be affected in any way. All applications received by that date will be included in a randomized lottery process per each school’s lottery preferences.
Once your application is submitted to SchoolMint, you will receive a confirmation email or text message. For applications for the 2021-22 school year, you will receive a notification by March 5, 2021 from each school you selected informing you of their lottery results. For applications to the 2020-21 school year, you will only hear from schools if there is an opening this year and your child has reached the top of their waitlist. Please keep your contact information up to date in your SchoolMint profile because that is how schools will communicate with you.
No. All applications must be submitted online. If you need help accessing or completing the application, please go to the front office of any Enroll WCC participating school once schools reopen, or call the school's main office.
Call or visit any participating EnrollWCC school during regular work hours. Additionally, you can contact SchoolMint by going to their online Support Center, sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling their support team (855-957-3535).
For the 2021-22 application year, the initial application period (called Round 1) ends on February 12, 2021. If you miss the Round 1 deadline, you can submit a Round 2 application, starting on February 16, 2021. Your application will be considered for enrollment after applicants who applied by the Round 1 deadline. Round 2 applications will not be included in any school’s lottery. If a school has availability, Round 2 applicants will be enrolled on a first-come, first-served basis, per each school’s policy. If a school does not have availability, Round 2 applicants will be added to the waitlist. Round 2 applications for the 2021-22 school year will be open through the spring of 2021.
Anyone! Round 2 applications are usually submitted by families who missed the application deadline, just moved to the area, or are interested in a different school option.
When a public charter school receives more applications than space allows, a lottery is held to determine which students will be enrolled. Each school’s lottery may differ in the way it prioritizes different types of applicants, in accordance with its school policies and California charter school law. Visit the individual school's page on this website to learn more about each school's admissions priorities.
To accept an offer to a school, login to your SchoolMint account. The Student Dashboard lists any applications you have submitted, along with their status. If an application is in "offered" status, there will also be a green button that you can click to accept the offer, as well as a red button that you can click to decline that offer. Click "accept" to accept. You should get a confirmation email and/or text confirming that you accepted, with more instructions on how to register. Please note that after this step, you must register with the school to ensure your seat. You can ONLY accept an offer at ONE school, even if you receive offers from multiple schools. If you are on the waitlist at additional schools, accepting an offer will NOT remove you from other schools’ waitlists.
After you accept an offer at one school, that school will contact you to complete a registration process. This may include additional paperwork, verification of student records, and other steps. The enrollment process will be complete only when you submit all required documents to the school itself.
Charter schools celebrate diversity and welcome all students, regardless of their background or needs. As public schools, charter schools are required to enroll and serve students with disabilities in the same manner as traditional public schools. Charter schools understand their responsibility to serve all students and are committed to providing quality and compliant special education services to students with disabilities. Because charter schools have additional flexibility, they can offer individualized support and various educational strategies to meet the needs of all students, including those with disabilities and other unique challenges. Contact each school directly for detailed information about the special education services they provide.
West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) operates more than 50 public schools. For more information about your zoned neighborhood school, other district options, and how to register, visit the WCCUSD website. View data about WCCUSD schools, student demographics, and academic results on the Data Dashboard.
Yes. To attend a WCCUSD other than your assigned neighborhood school, you can request a transfer during the annual Open Enrollment period. Visit wccusd.net for more information. Students zoned to the following Comprehensive Support Schools, as determined by the California Department of Education, are given priority to attend any WCCUSD school: Bayview, Chavez, Coronado, DeJean, Downer, Grant, Greenwood, Highland, King, Riverside, and Stege.
If you have other questions about a specific school, call or visit the school during regular business hours.
If you have questions about the enrollment process or your application in SchoolMint to one or more charter school, you can contact SchoolMint:
Online Support Center