Admissions Policy of Freire Charter School Wilmington
In order to attend Freire Wilmington, an applicant and his/her legal guardian must perform the following actions:
1. Complete and submit an application for admission by the second Wednesday of January
Starting no later than October 1st, an individual can obtain an application for the upcoming school year by going online to the Freire website, requesting one be mailed home, or picking one up from the school in person. An individual also can obtain the Delaware Standard Application for Educational Options on the Department of Education’s website. An individual can submit a completed application by mailing it back to the school, dropping it off at the school during regular school hours, or returning it to the DoE. Freire cannot receive faxes. Please note that Freire is not responsible for lost documents and cannot accept any claims for missing material being sent in by the deadline. Please send your material via certified mail if you would like a receipt of its delivery.
When an application is turned in directly to Freire, the Admissions Office will send you a confirmation postcard that will also contain your Application Identification Number (AIN) within two weeks. Please keep this number safe as it will be used during the posting of lottery results on the Freire website.
2. Check for the results of the lottery held on the first Monday of February
As required by DE charter school law, Freire Wilmington uses a lottery system for admitting its students. A lottery occurs when the number of applications received by the deadline exceeds the number of open seats that are available in that grade level. Not all grade levels may have open seats. All applicants must be a Delaware resident by the application deadline in order to be eligible for the lottery. While the lottery is public, attendance at the lottery is not mandatory.
Please note that Freire Wilmington has admissions preferences for its lottery, as allowed under Delaware law. Eligibility for these preferences must be documented before the lottery is held. When the number of applications for a grade level with openings exceeds the number of seats available, Freire will give priority to the following sub-groups of applicants (in rank order):
a) Students who have siblings currently attending Freire Wilmington
Sibling is defined as one of the following:
1) An individual having the same parent or parents, either natural or adoptive
2) An individual who is a step-sibling and shares a common custody or legal residency arrangement, and who has a natural or adoptive parent at the same residence
3) Foster children residing within the same household
b) Students whose parents are employed on a permanent basis by Freire Wilmington for at least thirty hours per week
Students who qualify for both admissions preferences will be considered first for open seats. Students who qualify for one will be considered in the priority order listed above. Students who qualify for no preferences will be considered for all remaining open seats once preferences have been exhausted in the lottery pool.
For each grade with open seats (and where the number of applications exceeds the number of open seats), Freire will publicly draw AIN cards for as many spots as there are available. Each grade level lottery will be conducted according to the order of the preferences above, with AIN cards divided accordingly in advance. All students selected will be announced publically and enrollment paperwork will be mailed to the address on the student’s initial application. All remaining students will be placed on the Waiting List. The Admissions Office will continue pulling AIN cards until each card is associated with a spot on the Waiting List for that grade. The results of the Waiting List will be posted only on the Freire website by AIN rather than mailed. Please do not call the Admissions Office to find out your place on the list.
3. Return required documents by deadline (the third Friday in March) if selected in the lottery in order to hold your spot at Freire
It is important to understand that being selected in a lottery is not the conclusion of the admissions process. All students and their families must submit the required enrollment paperwork by the proper deadline or your spot will be forfeited. If the deadline is missed, you may re-apply and be assigned a new AIN, giving your family a spot at the end of our Waiting List.
The required material to continue the enrollment process is as follows:
• Proof of Age (for example, Birth Certificate)
• Proof of Delaware Residency
• Recent Medical Records
• Home Language Survey
• Copy of 1st Semester/Trimester Report Card
• Custody or Guardianship Documentation (if applicable)
• Intent to Enroll Form (containing the statement “I understand that my child is required to remain in this charter school, in the absence of any condition constituting good cause, for at least 1 school year”)
All paperwork will be kept on file at Freire for as long as required by state or federal law. In addition, Freire fully complies with the special enrollment needs of students covered by the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. Please contact our Admissions Office for assistance.
4. Submit Final Report Card by the second Wednesday of July
All students coming to Freire must submit proof of successfully completing their current grade by this deadline so that we can be sure we are placing the student in the appropriate grade and have filled all seats fairly. Report cards may be mailed or dropped off in person. Any student who cannot show proof of successfully completing his or her current grade at this time will forfeit his or her spot.
5. Attend Summer Clinic
All incoming students must attend a summer clinic focused on Freire’s culture and mission that typically runs for three days in July and/or August. By attending this clinic, the student completes the enrollment process.
Applications Received After Application Deadline
As permitted by Choice Bill HB 90 w/HA 1 and 14 Del.C., §402(2), Freire will still accept applications after the application deadline, but as a charter school, we will not consider it in the same manner as those applications submitted by the deadline. All applications received after the deadline will be selected on a first come, first serve basis. No student will be contacted, however, until all students on the Waiting List from the lottery have been offered admission first. No admissions preferences will be shown to applications received after the deadline.
Statement of Diversity
Freire Charter School values diversity and seeks students from diverse backgrounds. Freire Charter School does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnic origin, or disability in its admission policy.
The Head of School shall have the authority to design, delegate, interpret, and execute all school practices which are related to student admissions provided that they conform to this Policy. The Board shall not act as a point of appeal for student applicants regarding any admissions decisions which the school has made in reasonable conformance with this Policy. The Board reserves to itself the sole discretion to decide upon matters of Policy conformance, and the Board shall only address such matters with the Head of School. The Board also reserves its authority to amend this Policy when future needs justify such actions.
Withdrawal Policy of Freire Charter School Wilmington
Freire Charter School seeks to provide an educational experience that is unmatched in Delaware for all of our students. We expect all of our students will want to stay with us through high school graduation. As such, after the initial year at Freire, students will not be required to complete re-enrollment forms to hold their place in the next grade level. Students who have been retained in their current grade level are the only exception to this policy. The guardian of a retained student must attest in writing that his or her child intends to repeat the current grade in the upcoming school year. The guardian must complete the Intent to Re-enroll Form by the stated deadline as well.
We recognize, however, that either through life events or a desire to be in a new educational setting, a student may leave Freire. Students and families will be counseled by appropriate staff in regards to their options, specifically how the “good cause” clause substantially reduces one’s ability to withdraw and transfer into a school in another public school district.
When a student does withdraw and transfer to a new school, all records will be transferred in a time and manner compliant with Delaware law. If a student seeks to return to Freire at a later date, the student must re-apply as a new student following Freire’s Admission Policy.