Launch Lottery & Waitlist Management
1) Waitlist Movement: Why are students moving up/down on the waitlist?
Here are a few things to check if you are unsure why a student is moving up or down on your waitlist:
- Step 1a: Priorities - Most students will have priorities associated with their application, and depending upon how your lottery design was configured, these priorities will move them higher or lower on the waitlist. In order to navigate to your lottery design, you can go to Settings > Manage Lottery > Edit.
- Step 1b: Dynamic Sibling - If your charter applies a sibling attending priority to students whose siblings are awarded a seat, you’ll notice movement on your waitlist. The Dynamic Sibling priority is applied based on specific triggers: Make Offer, Offer Accepted or Registration Completed so as you make offers/parents complete registrations you’ll see students move around. To check the Dynamic Sibling trigger go to Settings > Add and Manage Schools > Click the pencil icon for the School > then click Set Individual Grade Preferences.
- Step 2: Global lottery number - Sometimes it is unclear why student A with the exact same priorities as student B is ahead of student B on the waitlist. One possibility is the global lottery number, which is a random number assigned to each student that does not take into account priorities or dates submitted. There are two ways you can check a student’s Global lottery number: Changes log on their Student Profile and Lottery Results.
- Step 3: Enrollment status - Students are either in open enrollment or post-enrollment status. The open enrollment dates are set in your academic calendar, and if a student applies after the open enrollment date has ended, they will be considered a post-enrollment application, and will always be placed after students who are in open enrollment status. You can check if an application is Open Enrollment or Post Enrollment by going to the student profile and expanding the Application.
- Step 4: Submission date - If you choose to waitlist students based only on their application submission date, you’ll need to send a request to email@example.com asking them to update all students in submitted status to waitlisted status without running a lottery. If a student appears to have moved on the waitlist, their submission date may have changed (or possibly needs to be re-saved). Please note parents are not able to edit their submission date. This can only be changed internally. You can check the submission date by going to the student profile and expanding the Application or on the Application Index in the Submitted At column.
- Step 5: School Settings - Under Settings > School Settings > Individual Grade Preferences, check to ensure whether or not schools are ignoring post-lottery priorities (if the checkbox is checked, when students apply after the lottery, their priorities will not have them move up on the waitlist). You can also check whether or not schools have priority recalculation lock turned on (if checkbox is checked, this will mean that if an application is edited after the lottery was run and that student received the Sibling Attending priority, for example, they would not move up on the waitlist even if that priority was in the first sub-lottery).
- Step 6: Lottery Design - Under Settings > Design & Build a Lottery, check to ensure that the needed priorities have been included. Additionally, it is a good idea to check that priorities are in their own groups (without having multiple priorities checked in one group within a sub-lottery) if a student needs only that one priority to be included in that sub-lottery.
- Step 7: Changes Log - Under the Student Profile you can scroll down to the Changes Log to determine why a student received a priority or not, and when changes were made to the application or priorities and by whom.
2) Can I send out Offer and Waitlist notifications for all schools at once?
- Yes! Please contact your Customer Success Representative or email firstname.lastname@example.org to activate this feature. Once active you will have the option to bulk publicize your lottery results and then a new variable to include the application status for all schools a student has applied to.
- For instructions on using this feature, please see below:
- Step 1: All School Sites will run their lottery. They can review the results and export them from the Lottery Results page but they will NOT make any offers.
- Step 2: The main admin publicizing the notifications will go to the Make Offers page and see the link at the very end stating, "To make all lottery results public across all schools and grade levels at the same time, click here."
- Step 3: Click this to Bulk Publicize the lottery WITHOUT sending the automatic notification
- Step 4: You will receive an email when the system is done updating the status of all the applications. Once this is done, go to the Application Index and filter for applications in the status of Offered or Waitlisted.
- Step 5: Click on the checkbox on the top left of the table to Select All
- Step 6: Choose Email/SMS from the Bulk Actions menu to message all of the individual applicants (NOTE: do this through the Application Index rather than the Communications menu, as it will ensure a message is sent per applicant rather than per application)
- Step 7: Compose your message and be sure to drop in the School Application Statuses variable.
- This will list all the applications associated with that student and inform them of whether they were Offered or Waitlisted.
- This can also be used in the Mail Letters if you wish to compose a letter containing all application statuses OR you can mail letters on a School by School basis if you wish.
Manage Lottery & Waitlist Management
3) If someone declines an offer, how do we offer that seat to a waitlisted student?
- When someone declines a spot, your "Make Offers" page will show one spot as being available and will show you the student at the top of the waitlist for that grade as being eligible for the offer. If five people decline spots, then the "Make Offers" page will show five spots as being available, and show the top five students on the waitlist. You will then have the option to select the student(s) and "Make offers".
4) How do we add applications to the waitlist after the lottery is run?
Most schools keep their application period open after the lottery is run. If you're still accepting applications, you can continue to apply on behalf of parents even after your lottery is run. Here are the steps:
- Step 1: Be sure to check on your Academic Calendar that your "Application End Date" is set into the future. If this date has already passed, then you won't be able to apply on behalf of parents. (Go to Settings > Set up Calendars and Dates > Academic Calendar)
- Step 2: Apply on behalf of parents as you normally would (Admissions> Create Applications> Sign up a Parent). Be sure to answer all the questions on the application for them, to be certain their applications are automatically assigned the right priority.
- Step 3: Then the system will automatically add them to the Waitlist at the bottom of whatever priority group they are in. So no need to apply for any waitlist numbers.
4. Why are parents are not able to see lottery/waitlist results?
When a lottery is run, an admin has a chance to view the results before making the results public to students and families.
Once verified, an admin must go to Admissions - Make Offers, and click the 'Make offers public' button to send out these results to all families. Doing this sends out the Offer emails (if any) and the "Publicize Waitlist" emails, and marks the lottery results as "Public".
5. Current Offers v.s. Pending Offers v.s Accepted Offers
Once you've run your lottery and you're ready to make offers, select Admissions > Make offers from the top menu.
- Current Offers: This is the number of students you've selected on the page to extend an offer to.
- Offers Pending: This is the number of students already in Offered status (before the new offers are made to "current offers" students)
- Offers Accepted: This is the number of students with a status of Accepted, Registration in Progress, Registration Completed, Registration Verified Status.
Still have questions? Email us at email@example.com.