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Magnet school application submission period opens for 2020-21 school year

Parents interested in having their child attend a District 196 magnet school for the 2020-21 school year must submit an application by Jan. 8 to be considered for one of the five elementary magnet schools and by Feb. 12 for Valley Middle School of STEM. Applications are available at beginning Nov. 6.

Magnet schools offer parents increased choice in their child’s education by providing a concentrated focus that offers innovative ways to meet students’ learning goals through a particular theme. Magnet schools still provide the district’s core curriculum in the areas of science, math, language arts and social studies.

The five elementary magnet schools are Cedar Park Elementary Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) School in Apple Valley; Diamond Path Elementary School of International Studies in Apple Valley; Echo Park Elementary School of Leadership, Engineering and Technology in Burnsville; Glacier Hills Elementary School of Arts, and Science in Eagan, and Oak Ridge Elementary School of Leadership, Environmental and Health Sciences in Eagan.

District 196 also offers a K-12 STEM pathway that includes Cedar Park and Echo Park elementary schools for grades K-5, Valley Middle School of STEM for grades 6-8 and Apple Valley High School for grades 9-12.

Any District 196 student entering elementary or middle school in the 2020-21 school year can apply to attend a magnet school. Enrollment at magnet schools is determined by lottery and is limited to space available at each school and grade level. Students residing in the district who are selected for magnet school enrollment receive transportation if they live more than one mile from the elementary magnet school they will attend or more than one and one-half miles from Valley Middle School of STEM.

The elementary magnet school lottery will be held after the Jan. 8 application deadline. Parents of students selected for enrollment will be notified by the end of January and will be asked to confirm their child’s enrollment for the 2020-21 school year. The lottery for Valley Middle School of STEM will be held after the Feb. 12 application deadline. Parents of students selected for enrollment will be notified by the end of February. Students not selected for enrollment in the lotteries will be placed on a waiting list.

Parents can learn more about our magnet school opportunities during spotlight events held at each school during the application period. Details on dates and times can be found by contacting your school of choice or by visiting the website. More information about the magnet schools and the application process is available at or by calling Tony Eatchel, magnet schools and innovative programs teacher on special assignment, at 651-423-7810.