High School Choice and High School Transfer Program
March 1 -
March 31 April 15
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the High School Choice and High School Transfer Program?
The Syracuse City School District’s High School Choice and High School Transfer Program provides students the option of applying to a high school that offers a career, technical or specialized program of interest or requesting a transfer to a comprehensive high school, if they meet specific criteria.
High School Choice Options
Through the Syracuse City School District High School Choice Program, parents or guardians of students transitioning from 8th to 9th grade (or transitioning from 9th to 10th for Medical Assisting Only) will be provided the opportunity to submit an online application for up to three of the high school choice programs listed below. Please see the High School Choice Program Brochure for additional details on each of these options:
- Construction Technology
- Health Careers (Health Professions and Medical Assisting)
- Institute of Technology at Syracuse Central (ITC)
- International Baccalaureate Program at Corcoran
- Natural Resources-STEM Program
- Public Service Leadership Academy
- Syracuse Pathways in Technology Early College High School Program (P-TECH) at ITC
- Syracuse Pathways in Technology Early College High School Program (P-TECH) at Henninger
- Urban Teacher Preparation Program
- Welding Program
High School Transfer Options
Through the Syracuse City School District’s High School Transfer Program, parent or guardians of students transitioning into 9th, 10th or 11th grade are eligible to request a transfer during the transfer period if the student meets one or more of the following criteria are entered into the lottery. The criteria is listed in priority order:
1. Home School/Join Sibling Transfer – a transfer to their child’s home school (the school to which a student is assigned based on the physical address listed in our student information system), where a sibling (brother or sister residing in the same household) is enrolled and will remain for at least a year.
2. Join Sibling Transfer Only - a transfer to join a sibling (brother or sister residing in the same household) who is enrolled in the school and will remain for at least one year.
3. Home School Transfer Only – a transfer to their child’s home school (the school to which a student is assigned based on the physical address listed in our student information system).
2. How do I apply?
You must have a valid email address to submit an application through the Smartchoice Online System. If you do not have a valid email address you can go to yahoo.com, gmail.com or any other email provider to set up an email account. Please keep your email address and user name in a safe place, as this is a method we will use to contact you regarding your child’s application.
All applications MUST be submitted online by visiting www.enrollinsyracusecityschools.com.
3. When is the application submission cycle?
The application period for High School Choice and High School Transfers is March 1 –
March 31 April 15. Late applications and requests will not be accepted.
4. How many applications can I submit on behalf of my child?
It is important that each student identify the schools or programs that meet his/her interests before applying. Please see the High School Choice Program Brochure for more information. You can submit up to three separate applications for High School Choice and one application for High School Transfers, if they are eligible for a transfer. Therefore, you can submit up to four applications in total. It is important to note that Board of Education Policy stipulates that students can only be granted one transfer during their high school years.
5. Does submitting an application guarantee a high school choice placement or a transfer?
No, it does not. Submission of a High School Choice application to a career technical or specialized program of interest does not guarantee placement. All applicants are required to participate in the interview process for each program/school. The Interview Committee for each school/program is responsible for interviewing each student and recommending enrollment based on the student’s interest and ability to meet the program specific criteria.
All transfer placements are based on space availability and the criteria listed above under the High School Transfer Options. Requests to enroll in a career technical or specialized program of interest via application are also based on space availability, and the student successfully meeting the specific requirements of the program. To ensure a fair and equitable placement process, the Syracuse City School District will conduct a lottery when the number of students recommended for each program or eligible for a transfer exceeds the number of seats available in each school or program. Each student who is deemed eligible for a specific program/school or transfer request will be entered into our Smart Choice Lottery system. Students who are entered into the lottery, but not selected for a specific school, program or transfer request will be assigned to the waitlist for the upcoming school year. The Department of Student Registration will contact the family if and when a seat becomes available.
6. Do I need to apply even if my child is interested in a high school choice program that will be at their feeder school?
Yes. 8th graders transitioning to 9th grade are required to apply to a career technical or specialized program even if the program is in their feeder school. All students interested in a High School Choice Program are required to go through the interview process.
7. If my child is not interested in a CTE, or specialized program, or a transfer, do I have to submit a High School Choice application?
If your child is assigned to feed into Corcoran, Henninger or Nottingham in September and is not interested in requesting a transfer or submitting an application to a high school choice program, they DO NOT have to submit a High School Choice or Transfer application. They will be
automatically assigned to their feeder high school. The feeder high school is the school that your child is assigned to after 8th grade, based on their current middle school.
8. What if my 8th grader currently attends Frazer, Grant, or Westside Academy?
Frazer, Westside Academy at Blodgett and a portion of the 8th graders who attend Grant Middle School, but reside in the Fowler quadrant, do not have a feeder high school at this time. Therefore, these students are required to participate in the High School Choice or Transfer process. If the student does not submit an online application or is not accepted through the process, the district will assign them to one of the comprehensive high schools – Corcoran, Henninger, Nottingham – for the upcoming school year. The Department of Student Registration will contact the family to provide detail regarding the assignment for the upcoming school year.
9. How are students selected or accepted into a High School Choice CTE school or specialized program?
Each school and/or specialized program appoints an Interview Committee or Designee who is responsible for conducting a face-to-face or phone interview with each student who submits an online application. Students who participate in the interview process and demonstrate a strong interest in the program or CTE focus areas are recommended by the schools to include in the program or school specific high school choice lottery. Once the school or program Interview Committee sends the list of students to the Department of Student Registration, these applications are marked eligible in the Smartchoice Online System. This means that their names will be included in the Smartchoice Online Lottery for each specific school or program.
This online lottery system allows the district to implement and ensure a fair and equitable selection and placement process. Students who are selected by the Interview Committee are deemed eligible to enter in to the school or program specific lottery and then randomly selected for placement by the system. The system automatically ranks each student by giving them a number on the accepted list or the waitlist. This number is based on the total number of seats available in each school or specialized program. Students who are waitlisted by the system will be contacted by the Department of Registration when a seat becomes available at the school or specialized program of choice. Important Note: Students must be recommended by the Interview Committee to be entered in to the lottery. Student entrance in to the lottery pool or ranking in the lottery is not based on the date or time an application is submitted during the High School Choice open enrollment process. This is a randomized selection and ranking process.
10. What if my child is contacted to participate in an interview, but we cannot make it or miss the interview?
Under the Program Preferences section of each online application, you are given the option of granting the Interview Committee permission to interview your child at their middle school in your absence.
If you choose "Yes", the Interview Committee will schedule an appointment with the guidance counselor to interview your child on site. If you select "No", your child will only be allowed to participate in an interview if and when you are present.
Please Note: All students MUST participate in the interview process.
11. What if my child is recommended by the Interview Committee, but not selected in the lottery?
Students who are not recommended by the Interview Committee will not be included in the lottery. If the student is recommended by the Interview Committee, but not selected in the lottery, they will be required to attend their feeder high school or the comprehensive high school - Corcoran, Henninger or Nottingham – that is identified by the Special Education Department, if applicable.
Please see FAQ #6 for information on students whose feeder school would have been Fowler.
12. What if my child is accepted in to each of the schools or programs he/she applied?
The Smartchoice Online system automatically recognizes students who submit more than one application. Therefore, you will be asked to rank each application in order of the one in which the student is most interested in attending to the least. You will be asked to do this once you submit a second and third High School Choice application. Be sure that the student takes his/her time in selecting their top choice, because once a student is accepted and assigned to their top choice they are automatically removed from the accepted and waitlists for all other options.
13. How will I be notified of my child’s acceptance, denial and/or placement status?
Students who are accepted or waitlisted via the Smartchoice Lottery System will be notified through the Smartchoice Online Email Notification System. Students who are denied because they did not: (1) meet the criteria or demonstrate strong interest in the program or one or more of the CTE focus areas, as determined by the Interview Committee or (2) respond to a request for an interview will receive a letter of notification via the USPS mail system. 14. If my child is accepted or waitlisted, do I have to confirm his/her acceptance of the seat?
Students who are accepted into their program or school of choice are required to confirm or decline their seat by submitting an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the Student Registration Center to confirm or decline their seat. If the Registration Center does not receive a confirmation email or call, the district will automatically assign the student to the school of choice.
Reminder: Students who have been accepted into more than one program are required to communicate their preference by rating the applications during submission of the online application. If we do not receive correspondence or the student does not rank the application, we will assign the student. Students who are not accepted in to their school or program of choice are required to attend their feeder high school in September. Please see FAQ #7. If the student submitted an eligible High School Transfer request they will receive a notification of acceptance or waitlist via the Smartchoice Online Notification System.
To Apply Visit: