Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who should fill out the Application for Return to School?

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    All Lowell Public Schools students are automatically enrolled in remote learning for the 2020-2021 school year. However, the District recognizes that some families may prefer in-person instruction for their children.

     

    Between August 19-27, 2020, families may submit an opt-in form for in-person instruction and a lottery will be used to assign the limited in-person seats that are available. It is important to note that in-person instruction will only be offered as long as health data continue to support an in-person learning school environment.

     

    This form was emailed to families and can also be found here: http://www.lowell.k12.ma.us/returntoschoolform

     

    It is important that you fill out a separate application for each child in your household.

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  • When is the deadline to submit the Application for Return to School?

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    The deadline to submit the opt-in form for in-person instruction for the upcoming school year is Thursday, August 27. If you want a chance to be part of the lottery used to assign the limited in-person seats that are available, you need to submit the form available here: http://www.lowell.k12.ma.us/returntoschoolformIf you miss this deadline, you will be automatically enrolled in remote learning to start the school year. 
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  • How many students will be able to participate in-person learning?

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    Due to social distancing guidelines, as well as other health and safety protocols, building capacity is limited. Additionally, LPS has been analyzing our buildings and revising projected capacity numbers based on the number of windows that open in a given classroom, or the quality of air flow, for instance. Based on the latest estimates, we anticipate that 25% of the number of students attending our schools last year will be able to attend in-person this year. If more students request in-person learning there there are available seats, there will be a lottery to determine who gets a spot. 

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  • What is the criteria for the lottery for determining who receives an in-person seat?

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    If more students request in-person learning than there are available seats, the following criteria will be used to determine the lottery:

    • Students with Individualized Education Plans (IEPs)
    • Students identified with a 504 Plan (for learning related accommodations)
    • Students identified for McKinney Vento services
    • Students identified as English Learners (ELs)
    • Students in entry grades of each level (K-2; 5th grade; 9th grade)
    • Families who have more than one child enrolled in Lowell Public Schools
    • Students of Lowell Public Schools personnel
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  • Does submitting the opt-in form early increase the odds of getting an in-person seat?

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    No. As long as the form is submitted by August 27, when you submit it will have no impact on your placement.

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  • Can we select different options (in-person vs. remote) for each child?

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    Yes, we encourage families to make decisions based on the individual needs of each child. That is why we are asking you to fill out a separate application form for each child in your household.

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  • New questions were added to the opt-in form. Do families have to fill it out again?

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    No. In order to expedite internal data processing, we added a few new questions to the form (phone number, school, grade).  If you already submitted the application, please know that you do not need to resubmit the form again; we have received your information and are processing your application. 

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  • When will families find out if their child received an in-person seat?

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    Families will begin to be notified on Friday, September 4 via email.

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  • Is my child locked in to their initial choice between remote and in-person for the entire year?

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    No, your initial choice for where to start the school year (remote or in-person) is not locked in for the entire school year. Families will be given the opportunity to select a different option on a quarterly basis.

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  • If a student does remote learning, do they lose their seat at their current school next year?

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    No. Any changes to where a student attends school in 2020-2021 is for the 2020-2021 school year only. Students will revert to their 2019-2020 placement, or in the case of an elementary student transitioning to middle school, the middle school they were going to feed into during the 2021-2022 school year.

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  • Where will kindergarten students be attending school?

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    Families who registered their child for kindergarten between May 26-June 30 were entered into the kindergarten lottery. Families who secured a seat through the lottery will be eligible to attend that school in the 2021-2022 school year (next school year). This coming school year (2020-2021), all kindergarten students will be assigned to a school which is in walkable distance to the student’s home. This assignment will be for one school year only. There may be some exceptions (i.e. students who have older siblings in the school for which they secured a seat through the lottery will be eligible to remain in that school for the 2020-21 school year).

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  • Can families request to transfer schools?

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    For this school year, we will only be accepting transfer requests for the following conditions:

     

    • If you are unable to get your child to school, transportation is not available, and you want them to attend in person instruction, you may request a transfer to a school closer to your home.  You will be placed in the lottery for in person instruction at that school. 

     

    • If your kindergartener was assigned to a different school than their older siblings, you may request a transfer so that siblings are attending the same school. Please note kindergarten students are not eligible for transportation this year. Families should consider this before requesting a transfer.

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  • If a student was on the waitlist for a school last year, will they be moved off of the waitlist now?

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    No students will be moved from the waitlist during the 2020-21 school year.  The Family Resource Center will move students from the waitlist the following school year.

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  • What happens if a student chooses to leave LPS and attend a non-LPS school this year?

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    If you leave the Lowell Public Schools and attend a private school or another school not in our system for this year, you unenroll from LPS and would lose your seat at your current school (and place on the waitlist). If you would like to return to the Lowell Public Schools next school year, you would have to register again as a new student and would not be guaranteed to attend the same school you had been assigned to.

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