Open enrollment in Wisconsin
Students in Wisconsin normally attend a public school in the district they physically live in. With Wisconsin’s open enrollment program, students are able to apply to attend a public school in another district.
- Students may apply to attend up to three school districts every year.
- Open enrollment in Wisconsin is available to all students enrolled in K through 12th grade
- Applications may be rejected due to a variety of reasons including: not enough available space in the school district, student behavioral issues, etc.
- Students and parents can appeal denied applications through the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction
- Students who’ve already successfully enrolled in an outside school district do not have to do it again the next year. They’re already enrolled in the school district until they graduate or transfer to another school district.
Important Dates for Open Enrollment 2023-24
February 6, 2023
Open Enrollment begins.
April 28, 2023
Open Enrollment ends at 4pm.
June 9, 2023
Nonresident school districts must send notices of approval or denial via US mail or email. If the application is approved, the school district must notify the parents of the specific school or program to which the pupil is assigned. If the application is denied, parents have 30 days to file an appeal.
June 16, 2023
Resident districts must notify applicants if the application is denied. If the application is denied, parents have 30 days to file an appeal.
June 23, 2023
Parents of accepted applicants must notify the nonresident district if the pupil will attend the nonresident district in the 2023-24 school year. If the parent fails to make this notification, the nonresident district may refuse to allow the pupil to attend the district.
Did you miss the 2022 open enrollment deadline?
Unfortunately, enrollment for students in grades 6-12 is now closed for 2022-23. Students in grades 4K-5 can still apply using the alternative application procedure. The first thing you should do is contact us with your reason or special circumstances for missing the deadline. There are currently 7 distinct qualifications to apply outside of the regular open enrollment application period:
- The pupil’s resident school district determines that the pupil is a victim of a violent crime.
- The pupil has been the victim of repeated bullying or harassment that has been reported to the resident school district and continues in spite of action taken.
- The pupil’s place of residence has changed due to the parent’s military orders.
- The pupil’s place of residence has changed as a result of court order or custody agreement or the pupil was placed in a foster home or with a person other than the pupil’s parent.
- The pupil is or has been homeless in the current or proceeding school year.
- The pupil’s parent and the nonresident and resident school districts agree that attending the nonresident school district is in the best interests of the pupil.
- The pupil moved into this state within the past 30 days.
Wisconsin Open Enrollment FAQs
What is open enrollment education?
The Open Enrollment Act allows students to attend any public school in their state. Parents or legal guardians of students may apply to public schools inside or outside their school district of residence. School districts are required to share information about the open enrollment process online, so parents can make an informed choice. You can find Wisconsin state law governing open enrollment.
Why do schools have open enrollment?
Open enrollment provides more options for students no matter where they live. Public education choices aren’t limited by their district of residence.
Who can apply using open enrollment?
Open Enrollment is available to all Wisconsin residents enrolled in Kindergarten through 12th Grade.
Do you have to pay for open enrollment?
There is no fee associated with the Wisconsin Open Enrollment application process. eAchieve Academy is completely tuition-free for students living anywhere in Wisconsin.
Can you attend school in another district?
Absolutely. Students in all Wisconsin school districts are welcome to apply to eAchieve Academy, an online charter school sponsored by the Waukesha School District.
How many school districts can I apply to?
A student may apply to no more than three school districts each year. However, applications submitted to a nonresident school board for a pupil to attend a virtual charter school do not count toward the three nonresident school board limit.
What does open enrollment mean for elementary schools?
According to Wisconsin Statute 118.51, pupils attending an underlying elementary school district of a nonresident union high school district may be granted acceptance by the school board even if space in the grade or program to which they applied is not available. Elementary school students in any school district in the state are eligible to apply to our online public elementary school.
Can schools deny enrollment?
Yes. Your application can be rejected by either the school district you live in or the school district you are applying to. Open enrollment applications may be denied for a variety of reasons such as not enough space in the school district, current or past expulsion, habitual truancy or behavioral issues, a late or invalid application, and more.
What can I do if my application is rejected?
You may appeal the school district’s decision to the Department of Public Instruction within 30 days of the rejection. If the Department of Public Instruction upholds the rejection, you may appeal the decision to circuit court.
I am currently enrolled in eAchieve Academy. Do I need to apply again?
No. Students currently enrolled in eAchieve Academy do not need to reapply.