Magnet Programs
Applying to a Magnet School

Students apply for placement in a magnet program. All students who apply for a magnet program must meet any entrance requirements that may exist for the school or magnet program and agree to fulfill program requirements to remain enrolled in the magnet program. Transportation will be provided if the magnet school serves the student’s identified transportation zone or is a county-wide magnet program. CMS established magnet shuttle stops for students who attend selected full magnet schools.

For programs which require EOC/EOG scores, the lottery system uses the prior year scores due to the fact that the current year has not yet been tested.



January 9, 2016: School Options Fair at Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology from 9:00 am- 1:00 pm


First Lottery


January 11, 2016

Last day for new students to enroll and be eligible for the First School Options Lottery

December 4, 2015 – January 25, 2016 at 10:00pm

Application period for the First Lottery

late February 2016

Lottery notification letters for First Lottery arrive in homes


Second Lottery


May 13, 2016

Last day for new students to enroll and be eligible for the Second School Options Lottery

March 7, 2016 – June 6, 2016 at 10:00pm

Application period for Second Lottery

late June 2016

Lottery notification letters for Second Lottery arrive in homes




December 4, 2015 - March 18, 2016

Request for Reassignment period for first lottery

December 4, 2015 - July 14, 2016

Request for Transfer period for current CMS students and students who future enrolled

by January 11, 2016

February 22, 2016 - July 14, 2016

(Student Placement will enter these enrollments between February 22, 2016 - May 27, 2016)

Request for Transfer period for students who future enrolled after January 11, 2016

June 20, 2016 - July 14, 2016 

Request for Reassignment Period for

Second Lottery

Reassignments for new students

after the Second Lottery

If families wish to be considered for placement in a school other than the home school, they must submit a request for reassignment within 10 days of enrolling.


Application Checklist

 1. Enroll in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

Current CMS students do not need to enroll again. 

The 2016-2017 Student Enrollment process will begin mid-October. New students to CMS must be enrolled by January 11, 2016 to be eligible for the First School Options Lottery.

The First School Options Lottery will be held December 4– January 25, 2016. Students who enroll between January 12 - May 13, 2016 will be eligible for the Second School Options Lottery.

The Second School Options Lottery will be held March 7 – June 6, 2016.

Families who enroll after May 13, 2016 will be assigned to their home school and may request placement in a magnet school through the reassignment/transfer process. Enrollment information can be found in the Student Placement section of the CMS website.

Current CMS students do not need to enroll. Students currently attending a CMS school may disregard the first step. All CMS students will be sent lottery application information for the First Magnet Lottery in their Student Assignment Notification letter sent in January. Please be sure to check your child's backpack for more information.

2. Visit the Magnet Schools

The best way to determine if a school and program are a good fit for your child is to take a look for yourself. Contact the school for open house dates or schedule a visit. A listing of Open House dates can be found in the Magnet Programs section of the CMS website. Open house events for the first lottery are typically held from October - January.

3.  Visit the CMS School Options Fair

In January, representatives from all CMS magnet schools, Cooperative Innovative High Schools, and various CMS departments will take part in the district School Options Fair. This is an excellent opportunity for “one-stop shopping” as families can learn about each school’s magnet program, have their questions answered, and begin to formulate a list of prospective schools for consideration as options on the lottery application.

The 2016-2017 CMS Magnet Fair will be held from 9:00am-1:00pm Saturday, January 9, 2016 at Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology located at 1430 Alleghany Street in Charlotte, NC. 

4. Submit your CMS School Options Lottery Application

All current CMS students and students who were enrolled as future CMS students by the deadline will be sent instruction letters with Student Identification and PIN numbers the first week in January. These numbers will allow access to the student’s personalized, online Lottery Application form. 

New and future students who enroll after the deadline will be sent their Student Identification and PIN numbers beginning in mid-March, 2016. This will allow them to have access to their online Lottery Application form during the Second Lottery.

Applicants must acknowledge the Expectations Agreement in order to complete their Lottery Application and it must be submitted by the lottery application deadline in order to be processed. For those families that do not have internet access, CMS Learning Zone offices and the Student Placement Office will have computer kiosks available. Families can also access computers at their local public library.