Lexington-Richland School District Five is announcing an opportunity for families to apply for available seats remaining at Chapin Elementary School and Lake Murray Elementary School. The district is also announced results of its enrollment freeze lottery process.

An enrollment freeze was enacted at Chapin Elementary and Lake Murray Elementary schools due to the growing student population that resulted from new growth and development in the area. The district offered two separate lottery opportunities for remaining seats for the upcoming school year, with the latter ending on July 18. The window for parents to accept or decline the second lottery offering is July 31.

Families zoned for the two schools and interested in applying for any remaining seats are asked to contact their zoned school.

“Our commitment is to be as student-focused and family-friendly as we can be, while addressing the issue of overcrowding at these two schools,” said School District Five Superintendent Dr. Christina Melton. “In an effort to help families prepare for the start of school, we are announcing an opportunity for families to apply for a limited number of available seats at Chapin Elementary and Lake Murray Elementary. Our continued communication has been that the enrollment freeze is a temporary solution to overcrowding as we build a new school in the Chapin area.”

Twenty-seven applications for available seats were submitted during the first lottery, while 73 applications were submitted for the second lottery. As of July 25, a total of 12 seats were available at Chapin Elementary and 66 seats were available at Lake Murray Elementary. The remaining seats for each school by grade level are as follows:

CHAPIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Grade Available Seats

5K (kindergarten) – 1

1st – 4

2nd – 0

3rd – 2

4th – 5

LAKE MURRAY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Grade Available Seats

5K (kindergarten) – 23

1st – 15

2nd – 5

3rd – 3

4th – 20

Available seats may fluctuate as students enroll and withdraw.

Ballentine Elementary School, Dutch Fork Elementary School (Academy of Environmental Sciences), River Springs Elementary, and any of the district’s magnet schools or schools of choice (application required) remain options for families reassigned due to the enrollment freeze at the two schools.

“The enrollment freeze is still needed and still in effect at the two schools, and the lottery has concluded,” said Dr. Michael Harris, Chief Planning and Administrative Officer for the district. “We think the number of available seats demonstrates that the enrollment freeze helped tremendously in slowing overcrowding at the two schools. We’ve heard families say the enrollment freeze was a sigh of relief for parents who saw overcrowding firsthand, and we feel the lottery was the best way to give families an opportunity to apply for available seats.”

All actions were taken to allow class sizes to remain at acceptable levels and not overload instructional programs, Harris said. The district implemented Phase I of the enrollment freeze January 22, 2018, reassigning new Lake Murray Elementary School students. Implemented on January 22, 2019, Phase II of the district’s plan added an Enrollment Freeze at Chapin Elementary School. 

In May, the district offered a lottery opportunity for students reassigned to other schools due to Phase I and Phase II of the enrollment freeze, using a computerized, random lottery system. A second lottery opportunity, which was detailed at the June 24 School Board meeting, was implemented this month to capture all other students/families not impacted by Phase I or Phase II of the Enrollment Freeze. Parents of students impacted by the freeze received a letter informing them of this process. The district notified families of the second lottery through letters, emails, social media, traditional media and other communication tools.

Enrollment at Lake Murray Elementary School and Chapin Elementary School has increased over the past several years. To address overcrowding, the district has closed some schools to choice, placed special education self-contained programs on campuses with greater availability of space, and increased magnet offerings. In 2015, School District Five reassigned fifth graders from Chapin area elementary schools to Chapin Intermediate School, which now serves fifth and sixth graders. Learn more about the current enrollment freeze at Chapin Elementary and Lake Murray Elementary schools by visiting www.lexrich5.org/enrollmentfreeze

For questions regarding the Chapin Elementary School or Lake Murray Elementary School lottery process, contact your zoned school:

Chapin Elementary School

940 Old Bush River Road, Chapin

803-575-5900

Lake Murray Elementary School

1531 Three Dog Road, Chapin

803-476-4600

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