Reforming the Eighth-Grade Student Assignment Process for the Philadelphia Public Schools

Date of Original Version



Working Paper

Abstract or Description

The eighth-grade student assignment project is an initiative of the School District of Philadelphia that assigns students to high school academic programs based on student preferences, academic preparation, program capacity and desegregation requirements. This paper describes recent modifications to the eighth-grade student assignment process that resulted in: a comprehensive, realistic description of business processes, a new, more accurate method for recording family preferences and modifications to the student assignment process that better reflects student preferences and system constraints. We describe other recommendations not yet implemented, including more flexible program reporting to families, a relational database to meet future student processing needs, customer service via the Internet and management science models to automate the assignment process.