Lottery & FAQ
What is a school lottery?
How does lottery work?
Submitting a lottery application does not guarantee your child’s enrollment in the charter school. Rather, it’s the first step in the process. If your child is offered a seat, you will be notified via the CWC Los Angeles enrollment system about the process to accept or decline your offer. If you accept your offer, you will be asked to complete an enrollment packet for your child’s school. Please note that timely submission of all paperwork will be required if your child is selected for enrollment.
Within two weeks of the lottery, families will be contacted via email or letter in the mail with lottery results, including waitlist number (if applicable). If a child is accepted, the family must respond and accept or turn down the space offered. Any spaces that become available will be offered to the next family on the waiting list until the class is full.
Lottery application deadline for 2022-23 school year: complete
Lottery date for 2022-23 school year: complete
*Lottery dates are subject to change. Enrollment may be open after the lottery deadline depending on spaces available. Check the Apply page for more information.
Per our school charter, the following preferences shall be given in the lottery:
- Students residing within the boundaries of the Los Angeles Unified School District.
- Siblings of students currently enrolled at CWC Mar Vista. Siblings are defined as any two students who share a legal parent or guardian.
- Children of the Founding Parents of CWC Mar Vista (not to exceed 10% of total enrollment)
- Students who qualify for free or reduced price lunch
- Children of a current CWC Mar Vista staff member
- Children of a current member of the CWC Los Angeles Board of Directors
- Students who are currently enrolled in, and students who reside in, the attendance area of the public elementary school where the Charter School is located
**Please note that if you are extended an offer for enrollment through one of the preferences above, you will need to provide supporting documentation in the enrollment packet to accept the enrollment offer. A verification of this will be completed prior to finalizing your child’s enrollment. If your child was offered enrollment via one of the preferences above and CWC Mar Vista deems that the child does not qualify, your child will be placed on the waiting list.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are Citizens of the World charter schools?
Citizens of the World Los Angeles (CWC Los Angeles) is a non-for-profit organization (for-profit charter schools have been banned in California for many years). CWC Los Angeles is currently comprised of five schools, all founded collaboratively by parents, educators and community members: CWC Hollywood (TK-5), founded in 2010; CWC Silver Lake (TK-8), founded in 2012; CWC Mar Vista (TK-8), founded in 2013; CWC West Valley (TK-8), founded in 2020; and CWC East Valley (TK-8), founded in 2021. All of our schools are tuition free, non-religious, public schools committed to socio-economic, cultural, racial diversity, and all other forms of diversity seen and unseen. We are completely open to anyone in the state of California for enrollment.
Charter schools do not have special eligibility or entrance requirement exams. According to federal and state law, charter schools must accept all students, including students with disabilities and English Learners (ELs), regardless of previous academic performance. Per our charter, we do not give any type of academic assessment for enrollment. Charter schools are built on the belief that every single child deserves the opportunity to go to a high-quality public school education that puts their needs first, regardless of their zip code, income or ability, and parents have the right to choose the best public educational option for their children. When parents choose their school, the public dollars that California allocates to educate that child “follows” the child to the school of the parent’s choosing. It’s that simple.
If there are more interested students than available seats, the schools are required to hold blind lotteries, which randomly determine which students will be enrolled.
What is a Charter School?
Charter schools are independent, tuition-free public schools that are able to be more autonomous in exchange for agreeing to be held accountable for student achievement. Like traditional schools, charter schools were created by states to serve the public. Charter schools are supervised, directed by, and held accountable to the public through charter authorizing agencies, according to federal regulations under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, and the California Charter Act. CWC Mar Vista’s authorizer is the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Charter schools are free public schools funded using tax dollars based on the number of children enrolled. The per-pupil funding from the state and federal government “follows” the student, which means that public schools, whether charter or traditional, in California receive approximately equal resources per child. The objective of this funding mechanism is to allow parents to choose the best public option for their child. We are proud that our school model has a demonstrated track record of academic success.
How are Citizens of the World schools funded?
Like other public schools, Citizens of the World schools are funded by the state and federal government according to the number of students attending our schools. We refer to that portion of our budget as “government funding.” As a nonprofit organization, we also fundraise beyond government funding to bring in additional money to fully pay for our educational model. Our educational model costs more than what we receive in government funding, so we host fundraising campaigns throughout the year, secure corporate matching gifts, receive grants, and host community events to make up the difference in costs. We have a team of professionals to support fundraising at each school and rely on parent volunteers to support this important work. 100% of all dollars raised by parents stays at the school site.
What is the minimum age for admittance to transitional kindergarten (TK) in California?
California is expanding TK eligibility over the next several years. In 2022-23, is a child has their fifth birthday between September 2 and February 2 in their TK year, then that student is eligible to enroll in TK during that year. On a case-by-case basis, CWC LA is also able to accept students whose fifth birthday is after February 2nd. Please reach out to email@example.com if you want to explore this option.
Over the next several years, TK eligibility is expected to continue to expand based on these dates:
2021-22 School Year: Fifth Birthday between Sept. 2 – Dec. 2
2022-23 School Year: Fifth Birthday between Sept. 2 – Feb. 2
2023-24 School Year: Fifth Birthday between Sept. 2 – April 2
2024-25 School Year: Fifth Birthday between Sept. 2 – June 2
2025-26 School Year: Fourth birthday by Sept. 1
CWC is excited that this will allow for the enrollment of more 4 year-olds in our schools. Our developmental and highly differentiated model ensures children in TK will continually progress and be ready for kindergarten the following year.
What is the minimum age for admittance to kindergarten in California?
In accordance with California Education code, a child needs to be 5 years old on or before September 1 for entry into Kindergarten.
Where is the campus located?
Do you have an afterschool program?
Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. CWC Mar Vista offers morning care, an after school program, after school enrichment programs, after school sports and more. Learn more about CWC Mar Vista student programs here.
Do you provide transportation?
No, we do not provide transportation.
How does the Citizens of the World teaching and learning model work?
Our classrooms have smaller teacher to student ratios (typically 13 to 1), often with a Lead Teacher and a Teaching Associate in the elementary grades. This is much lower than the average District school, which has class ratios that dramatically increase in the upper elementary grades. Middle school class sizes are generally capped at 28 students, dramatically lower than the average District school.
Our classrooms are academically rigorous and joyful learning environments that engage children through engaging projects that invite students to grapple with relevant real-life topics and to learn in a hands-on/collaborative manner. Our teachers are also taking the time to get to know each child as an individual within our workshop-based classrooms. We empower children to think critically and learn to engage respectfully and productively with fellow students by developing their capacity to enter into and understand the lives of others.
- Learn to think critically at high levels, mastering standards in reading, writing, math, science and social studies, and more.
- Learn how to engage respectfully and productively with others. Our students develop life skills such as debate, conflict resolution, personal self-reflection and independence. They learn to constructively collaborate and solve problems creatively with those who have different perspectives and backgrounds. Our children learn social and emotional tools many adults wish they had access to at a much earlier stage in life, helping our students learn to be changemakers in our diverse society once they enter high school, college and the workforce.
- Learn in a holistic, meaningful, fun way. Children learn by partaking in practical activities that allow them to start thinking and talking about things they already relate to, and then build upon their own emerging theories to learn new skills and content. At CWC, student learning is not only enriched by – but meaningfully partnered with – explorations in music, visual and dramatic arts, physical education, and technology.
Who are your teachers? How are they recruited/trained?
- Are diverse, talented, caring adults who are given the flexibility to decide how to meet student needs while being expected to help all children learn at high levels.
- Meet all state and district employment, certification and security clearance requirements and have passed through a rigorous screening process.
- Regularly assess student progress and improve their teaching along the way.
- Know students have mastered a skill or ability when they have applied that skill or ability in a novel situation.
- Are afforded the room to create a teaching and learning experience that has meaning to them, within the boundaries of best practices.
- Are trained to guide children to develop within appropriate boundaries and treat them respectfully.
- Often have several years of experience at our school!
Our students get the benefit of many teachers’ minds, because our teachers work closely together and are accountable to one another for meeting student needs.
Are students with disabilities and English-language learners welcome at CWC Mar Vista?
Yes! We support children of all needs, including English learners and those with special needs. Our teaching and learning model is particularly attractive to families of students with diverse needs because it includes hands-on instruction that is tailored to meet the needs of every child. Students receive focused attention based on their needs and strengths, as teachers implement individualized instruction based on data-driven assessments.
How does your model serve communities?
Our students are being prepared to become future collaborative leaders who are able to solve problems, work across lines of difference, tackle challenges and generate peace and prosperity. Our parents and teachers believe that welcoming communities start with richly diverse classrooms that value critical thinking, creativity and human connection.
How do you engage and partner with parents?
We greatly value parent/caregiver and community engagement. We work to create numerous opportunities for parents/caregivers to be actively involved in our schools, including volunteer opportunities, surveys, and community building events. Each CWC school decides how to best work with their community, and we engage through a variety of channels, including Principal’s Council, principal’s coffees, email and text messages, letters sent home, caregiver meetings and phone calls, and volunteer groups.
If you would like to learn more about how to volunteer at CWC Mar Vista, please contact Kemberly Zacarias, TK-5 Community Coordinator or Ana Valenzuela, 6-8 Community Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Statement of Non-Disclosure
CWC Mar Vista shall not require a parent/legal guardian/student to provide information regarding a student’s disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, nationality, legal or economic status, primary language or English Learner status, race or ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic that is contained in the definition of hate crimes set forth in section 422.55 of the Penal Code, or any other information that would violate federal or state law, prior to admission, participation in any admissions or attendance lottery, or pre-enrollment event or process, or as a condition of admission or enrollment. Charter School may request, at the time of, and as part of, conducting its lottery process, the provision of information necessary to apply specific admissions preferences set forth in this Charter.
CWC Mar Vista shall not request or require submission of a student’s IEP, 504 Plan, or any other record or related information prior to admission, participation in any admissions or attendance lottery, or pre-enrollment event or process, or as a condition of admission or enrollment.
McKinney-Vento Homeless Services Act
CWC Mar Vista shall adhere to the provisions of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act and ensure that each child of a homeless individual and each homeless youth has equal access to the same free, appropriate public education as provided to other children and youths. Charter School shall provide specific information, in its outreach materials, websites, at community meetings, open forums, and regional center meetings, that notifies parents that the school is open to enroll and provide services for all students, and provides a District standard contact number for access to additional information regarding enrollment.