Champaign Schools Update on 2014-2015 Kindergarten Assignment Process

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 3:38pm

The Champaign Unit 4 School District has notified incoming kindergarten families of their school assignments for the 2014-2015 school year and would like to update the community on this year’s Schools of Choice process.

“We are pleased with the results of this year’s student assignment process,” said Assistant Superintendent Dr. Zola, who oversees the Schools of Choice process. “From the number of families who received their first choice to the reduction of unassigned families, this year we saw some improvements. A concerted effort was made this year to make the process easier to understand and to make the experience more family-friendly.”

This year’s initial assignment process resulted in 681 total applicants. Of that number, 671 students were initially assigned to a kindergarten seat for the 2014-2015 school year, with 88.7% receiving their first choice. The remaining 10 families were contacted individually to be placed and provided with waitlist options. Last year, 85% received their first choice and 42 applicants remained unassigned following the initial assignment process.

Of the 681 total applicants:

Percent of Families Receiving One of Their Top 5 Choices     98.5%
Percent of Families Unassigned                                                    1.5%
Percent of Free/Reduced Lunch Applicants                                  52%

Of the 671 students assigned:

Percent of Families Receiving Their First Choice                     88.7%
Percent of Families Receiving Their Second Choice                4.5 %
Percent of Families Receiving Their Third Choice                   4.0 %
Percent of Families Receiving Their Fourth Choice                 1.8%
Percent of Families Receiving Their Fifth Choice                    0.9%

Based on parent and community feedback, a number of enhancements were made this year to the Schools of Choice process and communications:

  • The District extended the Schools of Choice registration period to January-March. In previous years, registration had been limited to the month of March.
  • Updates to the Schools of Choice policy included a recommended option for families to rank all of the elementary schools in order of their preference.
  • The addition of a 12th elementary school option—the International Prep Academy—as well as a number of recently renovated facilities and top-notch programs offered more options to families going through the process.
  • A new “Welcome to Kindergarten” booklet was available in print and online to clearly outline how the process works and highlight each of the 12 elementary school options.
  • The District contracted with local firm Codagami to build a new technology solution that administers the assignments based upon the Schools of Choice policy. The new solution had a higher initial cost but relatively minimal costs moving forward, resulting in a long-term cost savings to the District.
  • New “Choice Chats” offered families the opportunity to meet with Assistant Superintendent Zola as well as other staff members in a small setting to have their questions answered.
  • A Choice Liaison was made available to families to assist families in scheduling tours outside the regularly scheduled dates/times.

If you have any questions about the registration or assignment process, please contact the Family Information Center at 217-351-3701. You can also find more information on the Schools of Choice website at

Important Upcoming Middle School Registration and Transfer Dates include:

Registration for 5th grade students at Stratton Elementary and Booker T. Washington STEM Academy is April 7-11, 2014. Students at other elementary schools follow a cluster model and do not need to register.

Elementary and Middle School Transfer Requests for students in 1st through 8th grades will take place during the month of May.