Thousands of Houston parents enter KIPP enrollment lottery — child wins seat in classroom

HOUSTON — We've seen long lines to play the lottery before, but parents weren't lining up for big buck Tuesday morning at KIPP Houston.

“The lottery at KIPP is a chance to enroll, the lottery is a lot more than just money, in our case it's a seat in a KIPP school,” said Chris Gonzalez with KIPP Houston.

KIPP — which stands for the Knowledge Is Power Program — is a college prep, public charter school already serving around 13,500 students in the Houston area.

An estimated 15,000 families will submit their information, but only a little over 2,500 children will gain admission for the Fall 2017 term.

Some parents believe signing up on Day 1 has its advantages.

“I was thinking that if we come earlier, it may be a chance of getting first,” parent Rashmi Kotadia said.

But everyone that submits by the due date is given a number. On March 1st of 2017, the lottery will be drawn at random, giving each potential student an equal chance at a very coveted spot at KIPP.

Each spot is so valuable because once you're in, you're in till graduation.

“The difference I see there is when you're studying KIPP, you have more confidence," parent Richard Lawal said. "I see them more obedient. The way they behave at home is more good."

For those that don't get a spot, hopefully parents will try again next year.

“We grow in low income communities. That's our focus, so the kids that need us the most can have access to a college prep education, so we opened two new schools this year, we'll open two more in Houston next year,” Gonzalez said.

You have until Feb. 10 to sign up for the lottery, which you can do at a KIPP school or online at KIPPHouston .org.

Good luck parents! If education really is the key to opening opportunity, the stakes have never been higher.