#1. How does the wait list work?
You will automatically be placed on the wait list for any school that you ranked higher than the school in which you were placed. The schools will administer this wait list and your placement off the wait list will come from the school. Don't be tempted not to register at the school that the DoE places you in because you are waiting for a better offer. The DoE may assume that you have gone elsewhere (to Jersey or private school) and are not interested in continuing with this process. Pre-Registering as you are placed is a good thing; it keeps you in the game and doesn't preclude further placements.
The schools will receive a randomized list of names according to the admissions priorities (ie. out of district sibs, out of zone/in district students, out of zone/out of district students, etc.) They will call down that list as seats open. You will be tempted to ask where you are on the list, and you shouldn't be surprised if the schools don't tell you. I know it sounds pretty fishy, but if they tell you, you will be tempted to call them every 6 hours for the next 3 months to ask if the list has moved. I know you are anxious, but when you are a parent in the school, you will want all those crazed prospective parents to sit on their hands so your school can take care of more pressing business, like teaching - and taking YOUR calls. They are running a school not an admissions office. Leave them alone until late spring (after charter and G&T placements are made). If you are still hoping for a wait list placement at that late date, touch base with the school you love to let them know that you are still active on the wait list.
#2. I am interested in a dual language program and I think that my child should be considered as a fluent speaker. What do I do?
When you list a dual language program, you will also get to list your child's primary language. If you think that your child should be considered as a fluent speaker of the target language or if they are very close to fluent and you want them to be assessed, you won't be penalized if you list that language. After the assessment, if they turn out not to be strong enough in the target language, your child will automatically be considered for the English side of the classroom. Each school may have a different plan for their assessments. I would definitely contact the school as soon as possible to let them know that you want have your child assessed.
#3. What happens if we move in the middle of this process or over the summer?
As long as a school is not over capacity with in zone families, they will reserve a few seats for families who arrive in their zone in the spring and summer. A school can't save a seat for you and you can't register until you have all your proofs of address and child in tow. You should contact the school's office to find out when you can pre-register.
#4. Is it true that un-zoned schools, which take kids from the district or region by lottery, won't consider you unless you list them first?
How did that one start? The schools absolutely don't know how you have ranked them. Everyone gets to participate in the lottery and you should rank the schools in the order that you like them. Here's the thing: the DoE WANTS YOU TO LIST THE SCHOOLS IN THE ORDER THAT YOU LIKE THEM. They are doing everything to encourage that and they are not doing anything to disadvantage you.
#5. I tested my child for G&T and I also applied with Kindergarten Connect. I got a confirmation email and number, and yet I just got an email that said that I hadn't registered for kindergarten. What the...!?
It seems like this is a glitch. Some emails have been generated that say that you have not applied when you have. If you have a confirmation number and email, it seems like you are good, but I would confirm anyway.