Admissions Procedures and Requirements

As a public charter school, Paul Cuffee School is open to students residing in Providence regardless of socioeconomic status, academic ability, or ethnicity. Students are admitted through an open, state-monitored lottery every spring, with siblings of current students given preference. We accept applications for kindergarten through grade 12. Click here to download the Automated Lottery Procedures.


  • Students must be residents of the City of Providence.
  • Age requirements:
    • Students must be 5 years old on or before September 1 to enter kindergarten.
    • Students must be 6 years old on or before September 1 to enter first grade.
  • Parents must complete and submit an application form by the deadline (see the Admissions Calendar).


Families whose children have been selected are required to complete and submit enrollment forms within 15 days to confirm acceptance. If families do not provide the required documentation within this time, the space may be given to the next eligible student on the waiting list.

Students who are admitted will be required to attend a Welcome and Screening Day in May and a New Student Orientation in August.

Waiting List

Students who apply to the school but are not successful in gaining enrollment through the lottery will be placed on a waiting list in the order in which they were drawn during the lottery.

Parents of students who are not selected from the waiting list by December may re-apply for the next school year by submitting a new application during the admissions period. In accordance with the Rhode Island Department of Education enrollment guidelines for charter schools, waiting lists will not be carried over from year to year. A new lottery is conducted each year.


Average Class Size: 20
Current Enrollment: 820
Students of Color: 96%
Female Students: 51%
Male Students: 49%
Free/Reduced Price Lunch Eligibility: 82%
Multi-Language Learners: 19%
Students Receiving Special Education Services: 13%
Total Employees: 168
BIPOC: 45%
Female Employees: 75%
Male Employees: 25%