Getting into Chabot in the 1st Grade


We live in Oakland and are zoned for Chabot elementary. Our son will be starting kindergarten next year and we had planned / hoped to send him to Chabot, but something has come up and we may be spending his kindergarten year elsewhere and then returning to Oakland when he starts 1st grade. I'm wondering if anybody can share their experiences getting into your school of choice after kindergarten (in particular, 1st grade at Chabot, when it's your neighborhood school) with the current lottery system. I talked with someone at the district and she said it is harder to get your school of choice after kindergarten, but not impossible. Would love a bit more information as we make the decision about where to spend the next year. Thank you!

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Hi there, I have one child at Chabot and another who went all the way through Chabot and is now in middle school. Historically, it has not been hard at all for families with a neighborhood preference to get into the school, even in the upper grades. I know so many families who arrived in August and got their child right in to the school, as long as they had that neighborhood preference. Chabot is a large school (~580 students), so they have pretty regular turnover. And they do not have grade-specific caps; they need to average 24 kids per class across grades K-3, but there are no hard and fast caps on any particular grade. So that can make it easier. I could see you not getting a slot until right before the school year starts or maybe during the first few weeks of school, but I'd be very surprised if your child never got in.

(I also have the sense that it is the Wild West right now because of Covid. Boatloads of neighborhood families have been leaving the district entirely - fleeing to private schools - and it will not surprise me if that continues even after the pandemic ends.) Good luck!