About Choice Enrollment (K-12)

(Application to enroll in non-neighborhood school)

​Preschool programs have a separate choice application process, learn more on our Early Learning website.

​Students currently on a waiting list will continue to receive updates through email. You may still submit a new choice application.

What is Choice enrollment?

Every student is assigned a school based on their home address, this is called your neighborhood school. Choice enrollment is choosing a school other than your neighborhood school. We always recommend families start by checking out their neighborhood school. Each school hosts an enrollment open house, and families can always schedule a visit. But sometimes your neighborhood school isn't the best fit for your student or your family. If this is the case, you can apply to attend another school.

Applying for Choice Enrollment

Students and families can explore Tacoma Schools online, attend enrollment open houses or schedule a visit to a school. Contact the school for event dates or to schedule a visit. 

If you are ready to make a choice selection, parents/guardians can submit a choice application —referred to as "Non-neighborhood School Application." The application will ask for your student's name, address and any siblings. Families can select up to two preferred schools.

Deadlines and important dates

  • Choice applications for the following school year are available October 1.  
  • Grades six to 12 the deadline is the second Friday in January (January 10, 2020 for the 2020-2021 school year). 
  • Grades kindergarten to five the deadline is the first day of March (March 1, 2020 for the 2020-2021 school year).

Getting your application in before these deadlines helps us ensure we hire the right number of teachers and other staff for each school. Choice applications received prior to the deadlines are considered on time and processed first when considering where to place each student. Applications can be submitted after choice deadlines, however students are less likely to be placed into their choice school.

Placement Criteria

Placement into a non-neighborhood school is based on siblings, program availability, date of application submission, space and staffing capacity. Families must provide transportation to and from school and students must reside within Tacoma Public School boundaries.

Decision timeline and process

Decisions on choice applications will be made within one month of choice deadlines and parents/guardians will receive email notification from the Enrollment team. If offered a seat at a choice school, families have two weeks from the time of notification to accept the seat.  Without a response the seat will be forfeited and offered to the next student on the waitlist.


If your first school of choice is not available, your second choice will be considered. If a seat is not available at either choice school, your student will be placed on a waitlist.  Being placed on a wait list is not a guarantee of assignment, but email updates will to be sent monthly or until a seat is available.

Schools and Grade Levels Currently at Capacity for the 2019-2020 School Year

Last Updated: March 21, 2019

​Baker Middle School
​Blix Elementary​K-5
​Bryant Montessori ​K-8
​Geiger Montessori​K-5
​Jefferson Elementary
​Lincoln High School
​Mason Middle School ​6-8
​Mount Tahoma High School
​Sherman Elementary ​K-5
​Stadium High School
​Stewart Middle School
​Truman Middle School
​Wainwright Intermediate​4-8
​Washington Elementary ​K, 2
​Wilson High School
​Whittier Elementary ​K-5

Enrollment and Choice Services is located at 601 South 8th Street Tacoma, WA 98405 ● Phone (253) 571-1142 ● Fax (253) 571-1223 ● enrollmentservices@tacoma.k12.wa.us

PowerSchool family support line is available for Choice Applicants (866) 752-6850, 6 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday