Frequently Asked Questions
1. Who participates in the lottery?
All students who submitted qualifying applications by January deadline will be included in the lottery and will either be offered a space at Unity Charter School or placed on the waiting list.
2. What is a qualifying application?
A qualifying application is an application that is completed with the requested information for children of the age to attend grades K through 8 who live in the State of New Jersey.
3. Do children who attended Unity last year go through a lottery for a space next year?
No. All children who attended Unity last year are Unity students and will remain so for the coming school years, until they graduate or withdraw.
4. When will the lottery take place?
The lottery for the 2015-2016 school year will take place on Thursday, January 15th at 12:00pm at the Unity Charter School, One Evergreen Place, Morris Township, NJ 07960.
5. Can I come to the lottery?
Yes, you are welcome to attend the lottery.
6. How does the lottery work?
Applications will be organized by grade according to the school’s charter admission priorities (see Q7 below). Drawings will begin with kindergarten and will continue, by grade, through grade 8. Names are drawn to determine placement. Students will be identified by name as cards are drawn and assigned a number. This number determines placement order.
7. What is the order of priority for drawing names for each grade?
The order of priority for drawing names for each grade is based on the enrollment priorities set forth in Unity’s approved charter: The Lottery has four tiers for each grade, Kindergarten through grade eight: Tier ONE for each grade includes students residing in the Morris School District with a sibling attending Unity. Tier TWO for each grade includes students residing out of Morris School District with a sibling attending Unity. Tier THREE for each grade includes students residing in the Morris School District without a sibling attending Unity. Tier FOUR for each grade level includes students residing out of the Morris School District without a sibling attending Unity. Therefore, for each grade, all students with the first priority will be drawn prior to students with the second priority. Students with the second priority will be drawn before students with the third priority. Students with the third priority will be drawn before students with the fourth priority.
8. What is the residency requirement to attend Unity Charter School?
All students who attend Unity Charter School must reside in New Jersey at the time of enrollment and throughout their time at Unity.
9 If one sibling from a family is accepted, are all other siblings automatically accepted?
No. Siblings of students who attended Unity during the prior school year receive priority in their respective grade levels; however, an offer of admission to a child from the lottery process does not automatically generate offers of admission to siblings. Each student will go through the process for their applicable grade.
10. How will I know if my child(ren) will be admitted?
By February 27th, you will know whether or not your child has been accepted to Unity. The parent/guardian(s) of all children who will be offered admission will receive a phone call advising them of their acceptance. Additionally, an acceptance letter will be sent to the home address on file. Those who are on the waiting list will receive a letter advising them of their status on the waiting list for the applicable grade. We are also working on an online solution so that parents can check their waitlist status at any time.
11. What do I need to do if my child is accepted?
Parents/guardians of students who receive an offer of admission must accept or decline the offer within three (3) business days. Offers may be accepted or declined by calling the school and speaking with Christine Thorsen (973-292-1808). Accepted offers must return the enrollment packet (including current proof of residency) included with the offer letter to Unity Charter School. Offers to attend Unity that are neither accepted nor declined will expire and that space will be made available to the next student on the waiting list.
12. What happens when my child’s name is put on the waiting list?
Your child will remain on the waiting list until a spot opens in the applicable grade. Please ensure that the school has your most updated contact information (address, phone numbers) so that we can reach you as soon as a spot becomes available.
13. What happens when my child is on the waiting list and his/her name is next in line for an offer of admission?
When your student is next in line on the waitlist and a spot becomes available, you will receive a phone call from Unity extending a verbal offer of admission. A letter with a written offer of admission will be mailed that same day and you will have three (3) business days from the date of the letter to accept or decline the offer. You will also need to come to the school to complete the enrollment packet (including current proof of residency). If you do not respond to the offer by 5:00 p.m. on the third business day after the date of the offer letter, the offer will expire and the space will be offered to the next child on the waiting list.
14. How long will my child remain on the waiting list?
Your student will remain on the waiting list until s/he is offered admission to Unity for school year in which you have applied, or until you elect to remove him/her from the waiting list. The waiting list will be vacated on the last day of school in June and will not carry over to the following school year. Parents/guardians must resubmit an application for the next school year.
15. If I missed the application deadline, will the application be held anyway in case the waiting list is used up?
Yes. Applications submitted after the deadline will be logged in with the date and time received noted and added to the end of the waiting list created by the lottery. Applications received after the lottery has been held and the waiting list created will be recorded as to the date and time received and added to the bottom of the waiting list in the order received.
16. If my child is not offered a spot at Unity this year, will my application from this year carry over until next year?
No, a new application must be submitted.
17. My waitlist number went from #9 to #10. I thought I would move up the waitlist when students are accepted. What would cause this to happen?
If a student has accepted and has a sibling on the waitlist, the sibling moves up to the first position (unless there are other siblings; then the sibling would move to the position just after those siblings who are already on that waitlist for that grade). Because the sibling moved up, all remaining waitlist students would move down the waitlist accordingly.