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Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education

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Public School Facility Programmatic Capacity

Programmatic capacity reflects the maximum number of students who can be housed in a school building. Typically the more facilities, the greater the programmatic capacity in specific geographies. As of SY21-22, DCPS and public charter schools had a total capacity of 125,997 seats. 

Public School Programmatic Facility Capacity, SY13-14 to SY21-22



Users can now select four different geographies - Comprehensive Plan planning areas, wards (2022 and 2012 boundaries), and neighborhood cluster - to view public school facility capacities. By planning area, public school facility capacities were greatest in the Far Southeast and Southwest area and the Far Northeast and Southeast area followed by the Upper Northeast area and the Rock Creek East area. By neighborhood cluster, Congress Heights (Cluster 39), Crestwood and Petworth (Cluster 18), Edgewood and Bloomingdale (Cluster 21), and Columbia Heights and Mt. Pleasant (Cluster 2) had the most total seats across both sectors. Crestwood and Petworth (Cluster 18) had the largest number of DCPS seats and Congress Heights (Cluster 39) had the greatest number of public charter seats.

Capacity of Public School Facilities by Varying Geographies, SY13-14 to SY21-22



The state-level accountability system, the School Transparency and Reporting (STAR) Framework, is designed to provide schools with multiple pathways to demonstrate their performance and success. Depending on the specific grade configuration of a school, the STAR framework includes a list of metrics representing academic performance, academic growth, school environment, English language proficiency, graduation rates (for high schools and alternative schools), and educational progress (for alternative schools). Each school is provided an overall star rating, with one STAR being the lowest and five the highest. Data are as recent only as of SY18-19, as the STAR rating was suspended for SY19-20 and SY20-21 due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

In SY18-19, the greatest total capacity across all public school facilities was located in 4 STAR rated schools, driven by DCPS facilities with a capacity of 16,310 seats. This was closely followed by capacity in 2 STAR facilities (either DCPS or PCS) followed next by facilities housing 3 STAR schools. The most public charter school capacity was located in Multi-STAR facilities. This means that the public charter facility houses multiple schools from a single LEA that were given different STAR ratings in SY18-19.


Public School Programmatic Facility Capacity STAR, SY17-18 to SY18-19

- Capacity for SY21-22 may not be directly comparable to capacity in previous years. Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, some public charter LEAs 
  may have reported a lower capacity for their facilities that was in line with social distancing guidelines. 
- Capacity for SY13-14 through SY20-21 is for an entire LEA located within the facility. For SY21-22, capacity is split across grade bands (typical PK-5th, 
  6th-8th, and 9th-12th grade bands) proportional to their 1-year enrollment projections. 
- The grade band filter has been temporarily removed while the underlying data is revised to proportion capacity along grade band lines. 
  See the downloadable dataset for more information on which schools fall under each grade band. 
- Capacities for DCPS schools that are swinging due to modernization are not reported. 
- STAR ratings are as recent as of SY18-19 due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; therefore, the facility data for these graphics are also only as recent as SY18-19. 
- Facilities that are “multi-STAR” are facilities that have multiple schools in a facility with different STAR ratings. 
- Facilities with no STAR rating include schools that did not receive a rating because they were either a new school, had a particular grade configuration 
  that is not rated, or their enrollment was too small. 

Source: DCPS and public charter LEA capacities (collected by DC PCSB) 

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