The Lottery

Due to the number of applicants requesting placement often exceeding the number of open/available seats into a particular grade and/or school, applications received within the stated deadlines and dates are entered into a lottery to place students. Two lotteries are scheduled for placement of applicants submitting requests within two distinct time periods, or pools. The lotteries are used to assure an equal chance for all students applying to Magnet/Choice schools, within the pool application periods and within placement priority categories.  

When you enter your application using the online entry system, or when it is entered manually for paper submitted applications, the request will be assigned to its appropriate priority category. The computer program then randomly selects an applicant and attempts to place the student in the choice(s) selected, beginning with the first choice school. If this choice is not open, the applicant’s second choice is considered, presuming an additional choice is listed. If an applicant is accepted into a second choice requested, or additional choice for gifted elementary programs, the applicant will no longer be considered for placement into the first choice or any other choice requested. Please do not request placement into schools you are not willing to send your child to attend.


The Pool lotteries for the 2023-2024 school year will be held by:

Pool A - Friday, December 2, 2022

Pool B - Friday, February 3, 2023

Applications submitted after the lottery pool deadlines will be processed for potential placement on a first-come-first-served basis. 


What priorities affect the lottery process?

The St. Louis Magnet Schools participate in the area-wide desegregation program and have a goal of being racially integrated.

Through the lottery system, all applications have equal weight within various categories required to maintain racially integrated schools. They are:


Continuity — Students currently enrolled in Magnet schools who are graduating to the next school level (such as elementary school to middle school) are guaranteed a seat in a Magnet/Choice school where open seats exist/remain. Students matriculating from middle school to high school must meet school eligibility criteria to be considered for placement in the Magnet/Choice high school requested. Students determined eligible for SLPS District Gifted Programs who attend SLPS General Education Magnet Schools or SLPS Neighborhood Schools are not given Continuity Placement Priority into Gifted Program Magnet Schools.


Sibling Students with a brother or sister currently attending a particular Magnet/Choice school who is also scheduled to attend the same Magnet/Choice school for the following school year, may be eligible for Sibling Priority. The two students must have at least one parent in common, and must be residing at the same address. Parents must submit an application before stated deadlines; must request Sibling Priority on the application submitted; and must complete the Sibling Priority information requested for their children. In addition, the application must have the Magnet/Choice school the sibling currently attends listed as the first choice. This priority is not available for students applying after the Pool B Lottery Application Period Deadline. Pool B Lottery Sibling Priority eligible applicants are considered for placement after all Pool A Lottery Applicants of all Priorities are considered. There is no guarantee any or all siblings will be placed in a particular Magnet/Choice school requested. Adding a sibling name to an application is not considered a valid application for the child whose name is added. Separate applications must be submitted to be considered for placement. No applicants will be assigned Sibling Priority status  after the Pool B Lottery Application Period closes.


Neighborhood — City students living within the “walk-to-school” boundaries set by the district transportation department can apply for Neighborhood Priority placement. There is no guarantee that all Neighborhood Priority eligible applicants will be placed. Applications for Neighborhood Priority consideration received in Pool B periods will be considered for placement after all Pool A applicants of all priorities are considered. No applicants will be assigned Neighborhood Priority status after the Pool B application period closes.


St. Louis City and St. Louis County applicants — These students are placed in magnet schools through the Pool A and Pool B lotteries after the higher priority placements are made. These priorities vary depending on the school a child currently attends. St. Louis City and St. Louis County residents are considered equally for Magnet School placement within these priorities. Click this link for more information. For the 2023-24 school year, residence eligible St. Louis County resident applicants must have a sibling currently enrolled in an SLPS Magnet School for an application to be considered Lottery Eligible for potential placement consideration. The 2023-2024 School Year is the last year a St. Louis County resident sibling may submit an application for potential placement.


With thirty specialty schools to choose from, the St. Louis Magnet Schools offer an exciting, tuition free alternative for students of all ages and abilities.