Student Placement Center
Mon, Tues, Wed,Fri   7:30am - 4:30pm
Thurs 12:00pm - 4:30pm

2102 University Avenue West, Saint Paul 55114

School Zones and Areas

What is a Community School "Zone"? To ensure that families living near Community Schools have a stronger chance of admittance, SPPS created Elementary Community School Zones. These geographic boundaries give priority to students living within these boundaries. Students living within Community School Zones have a better chance for admission to their Community School by submitting an application by February 3, 2023.

Community School Zones were drawn to:

  • Cause the least disruption to students/families
  • Encourage integration of schools
  • Adhere to building capacity
  • Align with existing neighborhood boundaries, such as railroad tracks, bodies of water and large green spaces


What is an "Area"? Areas are the six geographic Areas (A-F1/F2) across the district. Areas remain unchanged from the past year. All Areas can be seen on the maps in the School Selection Guide or by using the School Finder tool at


What are “articulations” and community school pathways? How do they help you get into a school? District and Area magnet schools have specialized learning programs or courses of study that “articulate,” or carry a student from elementary to middle and high school, such as aerospace and language immersion. Program prerequisites and district enrollment policies will apply, especially at the high school level – and should be considered. Based on home addresses, community school pathways carry students through elementary, middle and high schools within their Area. Students who choose to apply to their Community School have a better chance of getting into that school.


If I choose a school outside my Area and do not get in, will I automatically have a spot at my Community School? No. Students have two choices on the school application and should list their Community School as one of their options if also applying to a school outside of their Area. Nothing is automatic or guaranteed. Students need to apply and/or contact Student Placement for other options.


If we live outside of, but near, an Area where my child wants to attend high school, can she/he get priority for available seats? No. Geographic proximity does not affect acceptance at the high school level.


Do I have to follow the school pathways designated for my community? No, these are merely an option that affords your child the opportunity to school with other children in your neighborhood. Families have the option of a school other than their Community School if there is space and the student meets other school-specific requirements. Transportation is not provided to Community Schools that are outside your Area. Community Schools provide a clear pathway from kindergarten through high school.


If my child attends a Regional or District Magnet (articulated/specialized learning program) outside our Area, will a seat be reserved for him/her at the next program level? Yes. The student will not need to apply; a seat will be reserved for him/her.


Can my child attend an elementary Community School that is outside our Area? You may apply to attend a Community School outside of your Area. However, bus transportation is not provided.


Can my student attend the elementary school nearest to our daycare rather than our Area school? Yes, parents who want their child to attend school near their daycare can apply to a school located within the same Area. Acceptance is not guaranteed, however.


If my child attends a school outside my Area, can my child get on a bus if I drop them off at the bus stop that serves that school?  No. If your student is accepted to a school outside your Area, you must provide your own transportation. While it might seem like an easy fix, students cannot ride the bus to schools to which they are not eligible for transportation.


Can we attend an International Baccalaureate (IB) school outside our Area? Will we get a bus? Will out-of-Area IB students be accepted?  Students who are interested in an IB program outside their Area may apply, but will be accepted only if space is available. Even if they are accepted, they will not receive bus transportation.