KIPP Jacksonville Public Schools: Increasing Enrollment During COVID

3 min read
Feb 23, 2022 8:00:00 AM

Increasing student enrollment during the pandemic using an online enrollment platform.

Location: Jacksonville, FL
Website: KIPP Jacksonville Public Schools
Enrollment: 2,000+
Demographics: NCES Data*
* Data does not include enrollment for high school grades
SchoolMint User Since 2017

The Challenge

The story of KIPP Jacksonville Public Schools begins in 2010 with the opening of their first public charter school: KIPP Impact Middle School.

With an initial class consisting of 90 fifth-grade students, managing student enrollment was incredibly simple. School administrators could easily process paper applications and track enrollment using a basic spreadsheet.

Over the course of a few years, KIPP Jacksonville began to open new campuses to accommodate a larger student body. As the burgeoning school system continued to grow in size, so did their enrollment needs. School administrators soon found themselves processing large amounts of paper applications, running a complicated lottery placement system, and tracking admissions across multiple schools with only a single spreadsheet.

It became clear to everyone involved that KIPP Jacksonville was primed for continuous growth. But, without a better enrollment system, any potential growth would be hindered by administrative inefficiencies.

The Solution

Leaders at KIPP Jacksonville Public Schools realized that they needed a more flexible enrollment system that could continue to grow alongside their school system.

So, in 2017, KIPP Jacksonville partnered with SchoolMint to build an online enrollment solution that could meet the ever-changing needs of the school district.

SchoolMint’s enrollment platform provided KIPP Jacksonville with needed features that its existing SIS platform couldn’t easily provide. On the new platform, KIPP Jacksonville was able to bring its application process online, improve its lottery placement system, and greatly reduce the administrative workload. Managing enrollment was a breeze.

“SchoolMint made facilitating our lottery process easier and much quicker,” said NiShawna Williams, KIPP Jacksonville’s manager of student recruitment and enrollment. “We have been able to respond to families faster and it has alleviated the strain caused by a paper-based process. Most importantly, the platform was designed in a way so as to easily address compliance concerns through equitable, transparent solutions.”

As KIPP Jacksonville continued to grow over the years, so did the ways in which they used SchoolMint’s enrollment platform. Administrators began to use SchoolMint for managing student re-registration, tracking parent contact information, and storing files in a centralized location.

“If you want to streamline your enrollment process, use SchoolMint. To put it more clearly: if you want to continue to grow your school, use SchoolMint.”
NiShawna Williams, Manager of Student Recruitment and Enrollment

The Results

The flexible features provided by SchoolMint’s platform allowed KIPP Jacksonville to continue to grow without hindrance — even when faced with challenges presented by the COVID pandemic.

While schools and districts across the country were struggling to reverse declining enrollment caused by COVID-related disruptions, KIPP Jacksonville was beating national odds and experiencing record growth.

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“During the pandemic, SchoolMint became our one-stop-shop for enrollment,” said Williams. “For every challenge we faced, SchoolMint’s platform had an easy solution. For example, we found that parents weren’t answering calls, mainly because they couldn’t talk on the phone while also working from home. With SchoolMint, we could text parents and direct them to the online registration platform without inconveniencing them.”

During 2020, KIPP Jacksonville grew its enrollment by over 900 students — enough to warrant opening a brand new campus.

Williams credits this growth to staff being able to manage enrollment while still respecting social distancing guidelines: “People refer people. Once families learned about our online enrollment system — learned that they didn’t have to stand in packed lines or offices and could safely enroll their children — they began to share their positive experiences with other families. The response was amazing.”

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