In an effort to streamline enrollment and admissions processes for families and create centralized visibility into seat availability and student movement, a large urban school district worked with the Acumen Solutions Enrollment Management Team to design and build a first-of-its-kind custom Application and Enrollment Management System.

Business Challenge

One of the challenges that the School District sought to address was a confusing and labor-intensive student enrollment system that often frustrated parents and forced students to attend schools where their needs were not being met. Schools city-wide operated enrollment lotteries and admissions with different timelines and with varying obtuse criteria. Only the savviest and most mobile parents could navigate the process of driving from school to schools, filling out applications and forms, and making an admissions decision. In 2011, a new Superintendent realized that the time had come to consolidate this process and ensure that all families had access to the information and resources necessary to find the right school for every student, regardless of zip code or socio-economic status.


Acumen Solutions implemented an Application and Enrollment Management system that created a common database for student data across the district and allows families to apply to the schools and early childhood programs of their choice using one application operating on one timeline.

Return on Investment

For the first time:

  • Families can view information about schools and programs and apply to all schools in the city in one place using a parent portal
  • Families can go to any school to submit a paper application for any school in the city or apply online through a parent portal
  • Central administrators can monitor and interact with application data as well as track student transfers, discharges, and other student movements
  • Schools can allocate resources that would typically be spent running lotteries and communicating with families to classrooms or other areas of need