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As a parent, you know your child best.  This process is about using that knowledge to select a learning environment that is the best fit for your children and their future.

You can start by taking a few moments to think and talk with your child about:


  • What does your child like?
  • What makes your child unique?
  • What motivates your child to explore and learn?
  • What other factors are most important to you (e.g. school’s distance from home, afterschool clubs and sports)?



Families can get ready by doing the following:

  • Create an email account and password (if you do not already have one) where you can send and receive information
  • Obtain access to technology (smart phone or computer) so that you can complete the applications online. 


While paper applications are always available, applying on-line is easy, and once the lottery occurs—notification is instant through email!  Also, once you have an email account, you can go to http://www.hartfordschools.orgto join the Hartford Public Schools Parent Portal and learn more about how your child is doing in school.


Remember:  complete both the online Hartford District Choice Lottery and Regional School Choice Lottery Applications—use all of your options!



For the 2016-2017 School Year, the Hartford District Choice Lottery and the Regional School Choice Lottery, families need only keep one application timeframe in mind:

  • OPENS: Thursday, October 15, 2015
  • CLOSES: Friday, January 29, 2016
  • To Apply:

o   HPS District Choice Application:

o   RSCO Application:

Remember:  print and save the confirmation pages you receive once your applications are successfully submitted.



  • All parents or legal guardians of a student can apply.
  • Hartford Resident families can complete both the Hartford District Choice Lottery and the Regional School Choice (RSCO) Lottery applications. 
  • Non-Residentfamilies who wish to access Hartford Public School Magnet and Open Choice options apply only through the RSCO application.



  • All students can apply, but students in the transitional grades MUST apply.
  • Transitional grades are Prekindergarten, Kindergarten and Eighth Grade –entry or last/final grade of the current school.  Seat availability is greater in the transitional grades.
  • Non-transitional grades are all other grades (1st-7th) where a change is not required but a family may choose to apply to access a new school theme or opportunity. Seat availability is more limited in the non-transitional grades.


Remember:  that if you submit an application and the student is held back in their current grade at the end of the year, then the student remains at their current school.

The school selection process may seem a bit overwhelming.  But, it’s easy if you watch this video and follow these few simple steps!

No need to write it all down, the steps are also listed below.

Hartford Choice How-to in English from Hartford Public Schools on Vimeo.


Hartford Choice How-to en español from Hartford Public Schools on Vimeo.


Please click here for a printable version of, “How to Apply: HPS School Selection at a Glance”  in English or en español.


Still have questions? Contact us at:

Hartford Public Schools Office of School Choice, 860-695-8876

Office of School Choice Staff at the RSCO Office, 860-713-6991



  Your Child’s Future Begins Here in Hartford!