2020-2021 Enrollment Information

Enrollment Process

Information Night:  
Tuesday, February 18, 2020 (5:30pm-6:30pm)
Location: The Emerson School Auditorium located at 428 NW 20th Avenue (Cross streets are NW 20th & NW Glisan)
Read the FAQ's from Information Night
Read the Information Night Packet

Open House:
The Open House scheduled for Tuesday, March 17th has been postponed.
We may need to cancel this event all together in order to run our lottery in early April.
Please check back here for details.
(If you have already submitted an application, we will keep you updated via email.)

Application, Information Night, Open House, Lottery, Waiting List

The first step is to decide if The Emerson School is a good choice for your child. Read about our program, review the Frequently Asked Questions, and if you want more information please attend the Information Night and Open House. (*Please note: Attending Info Night and Open House are completely optional and not required to apply to The Emerson School. Info Night and Open House do not require an RSVP and are geared towards adults.)

If The Emerson School looks like a good educational option for your family, the next step is to submit an application.

2020-2021 Emerson School Application Is Now Closed

There is no preference given to those who apply early, but you must submit the application by the deadline in March. Our lottery will be conducted in early April and results will be emailed to families.

Siblings of currently enrolled students bypass the lottery process and are offered an automatic spot (when there is a spot to offer) or move to the top of the waitlist if there is not a spot to offer. Applicants that live within the Portland Public School (PPS) district boundaries have preference over out of district applicants. Out of district applicants will only be considered after we have gone through our entire waitlist (by grade) of in district applicants.

New Information For 2020-2021 Applicants – Weighted Lottery

As of June 25, 2015, with the passage of SB 820, public charter schools in Oregon are allowed to implement a weighted lottery to give enrollment preference to historically underserved students. Under the new law, historically underserved students are defined as students who are “at risk because of any combination of two or more factors including their race, ethnicity, English language proficiency, socioeconomic status, gender, sexual orientation, disability, and geographic location.” The intent of this law is to ameliorate the impact of discrimination against historically underserved students.

In response to SB 820, The Emerson School will be implementing a weighted lottery for 2020-2021 enrollment. Demographic data demonstrates that The Emerson School has lower rates of enrollment of students from the following historically underserved student categories:

  1. Historically underserved students based on race (African American, Pacific Islander/Native Hawaiian, American Indian/Alaska Native)
  2. Historically underserved students based on ethnicity (Hispanic)
  3. Economically disadvantaged students (Directly certified/free and reduced priced meal program)
  4. English language learners

The Emerson School’s weighted lottery process will be conducted as follows:

Applicants will indicate on their application form if they qualify as historically underserved by self- identifying in at least two of the four above mentioned categories. Those who do will have their application number entered into our lottery 3x as opposed to 1x for students who do not qualify as historically underserved.

The Emerson School uses a random number generator to conduct the lottery.

Demographic data will be collected for administrative purposes as indicated by ORS 338.125. School Administration is responsible for producing reports on the enrollment and demographic information collected. The Emerson School Board of Directors will assess the weighted lottery process on an annual basis to determine its impact and whether adjustments need to made to the process.

Application Process

You are invited to attend the Information Night and the Open House to meet some of the school staff and hear more about our program. There is a brief question and answer time at the Information Night, and you will see classrooms and meet teachers at the Open House. It is fine to wait until after these events to turn in your application.

Once you have submitted your application and attended the events, wait for the results of the lottery to be emailed to you. If you are selected for the incoming kindergarten class, there will be a Kindergarten Extravaganza in May or June for those who will be in the incoming class (and the first 5 children on the waiting list).

If you have applied for grades 1-5, you will be automatically placed on the waiting list until we know of an opening. Often this isn’t until well into summer, so be aware there may be no further opportunity to visit the school, meet teachers or ask questions if you don’t attend the Open House.

If you are placed on the waiting list, you will be notified of your position on the list and we will call you if there is an opening for your child.  While we are happy to answer any further questions, you have at that time, you will need to be prepared to make a quick decision regarding enrolling at The Emerson School. Due to staff constraints, we will not offer additional tours if you missed the Open House or Information Night.

Thank you for considering The Emerson School, we are looking forward to receiving your child’s application!

Applications are due Friday, March 20, 2020 by 5:00pm.

Results will be sent on or before April 13, 2020.


The Board and employees of The Emerson School have a common commitment to the equality of opportunity for all.  The Emerson School is an equal opportunity organization that does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, marital status, national origin, or mental or physical disability.

The Emerson School

We are a welcoming, inclusive learning community committed to equity for all students. In addition to comprehensive literacy and mathematics instruction, students are actively engaged through project-based learning using the outside community as an extension of the classroom. Learn more about us.

The Emerson School
428 NW 20th Avenue
Portland, OR 97209
(503) 525-6124 | View Map
info@emersonschool.org

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