How and Where to Enroll Your Child in a Surprise School

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How and Where to Enroll Your Child in a Surprise School

Want to enroll your child in a Surprise-area school, but not sure which one? This is the time to start checking out schools, touring the school site, and thinking about enrollment applications, since enrollment can be competitive. I compiled the following information from my personal experience as a mom who lives and works in Surprise, website research, and what clients and friends have shared with me. Hope you find this helpful!


Dysart Unified School District:

This public school district has been the state’s fastest growing school district, and they have more than tripled in size since 2000, with 19 elementary schools (pre-K through 8th grade) and 4 high schools. Open Enrollment allows parents to enrollment their children at a public school outside of their home’s boundary, based on available classroom space. Open enrollment is currently available online at and includes all school sites and special programs aka academic pathways, including Global International Academy at Luke Elementary, the Dysart Arts Academy at West Point, Cambridge Academies at Marley Park and Countryside, the Integrated STEM Concept at Canyon Ridge, as well as high school signature programs.

Although this month’s Budget Override has unofficially been approved, the district is waiting for official election results before making announcements regarding programs that were cut and/or reduced, including free full day kindergarten and increased class sizes. In previous years, Dysart offered free full day kindergarten, but after the Override failure last year, they reduced it to half-day with the option to pay for enrichment for the second half of the day for the current school year.

Special programs aka academic pathways for K-8: The Cambridge Academy offers an advanced academic program at Marley Park and Countryside Elementary Schools, as in a school within a school. Global International Academy at Luke Elementary, the Dysart Arts Academy at West Point, the Integrated STEM Concept at Canyon Ridge, as well as high school signature programs. More information here:

Special programs for High school:

Dysart High School

  • Automotive Technology
  • Photo Imaging

Shadow Ridge High School

  • Architecture
  • Engineering

Valley Vista High School

  • Computer Animation
  • Culinary Arts
  • Fire Science
  • Law Enforcement and Public Safety

Willow Canyon High School

  • Education Professions
  • Medical Lab Assistant
  • TV/Media Production

Why enroll at Dysart: There are several options for special programs, depending on your child’s needs/interests, and open enrollment also gives parents the choice of which school to enroll their child (class space permitting).


Paradise Education Center (PEC):


Surprise Location Opened: 1998

Elementary Grades: K-4 (Middle school is grades 5-8 and high school is 9-12)

Fee: $75 curriculum fee for Kindergarten students

Specials: Music, art, PE, technology, and Spanish

Class average: 28 students per class

Why enroll at PEC: This charter school has loyal families who say that PEC holds students to a higher academic standard. Teacher retention is higher at PEC than at most other schools in the area. Many teachers and staff members have worked here since the school’s opening in 1998.

How to enroll: In terms of enrollment within the Surprise area, this is the most competitive school to get into. There is a random lottery with a lengthy waiting list of anywhere from about 80-200 names per grade. Siblings are considered a priority, but are not guaranteed to get in.

When to enroll: Open enrollment for the random lottery is 1/22-2/26/2016. The lottery will be held on March 1st. Students whose names are not chosen from the lottery will automatically be place on the waiting list.

(623) 975-2646

15533 W. Paradise Ln, Surprise, 85374


Imagine Rosefield Charter School:


Surprise Location Opened: 2005

Elementary Grades: Pre-K through 5th grade. Grades 6-12 attend Imagine Prep.

Fee: A one time $600 fee for Kindergarten students (full day kindergarten)

Class size average: Kindergarten 30 students with 1 teacher and 1 full-time aide per class

Specials: PE, Music, Art, Library, & Character Education

Why enroll at Imagine: This charter school emphasizes character building with the Character Counts program. They also have loyal families who have created a strong sense of community.

How to enroll: Pick up enrollment forms at the school’s front office

When to enroll: Enrollment forms will be available to pick up at the front office in January, 2016. Enrollment is based on first come, first serve.

(623) 344-4300

12050 N. Bullard Ave, Surprise, 85379


Legacy Traditional School


Surprise Location Opened: 2015

Elementary Grades: K-8

Fee: No fee for half-day kindergarten, but full-day Kindergarten is $250 per month. No fee for the other grade levels.

Specials: PE, Art, Music, & Spanish. Students in the older grade choose a “Music” track with a Mozart curriculum, or a “PE” track, depending upon their interest to emphasize

Class average: 33-34 students per class

Why enroll at Legacy: This new charter school offers a traditional, back-to-basics approach to education and an accelerated curriculum with the option of 2 tracks for older grades: PE track or Art track

How to enroll: Complete the “Enrollment Interest Form” online

When to enroll: Complete the “Enrollment Interest Form” ASAP to be placed on the waiting list. The lottery is first come, first serve, based on the number of returning students. The lottery will be held in March, 2016, and priority goes to younger siblings.

(623) 299-9820

14506 W. Sweetwater Ave, Surprise, 85379


Arizona Charter Academy:

Surprise Location Opened: 2001 (This is the only location in the state)

Elementary grades: K-8 (Arizona Charter Academy has a two-story building; the 9-12th high school campus is adjacent to the elementary campus)

Fee: None except for early Kindergarten, which is for students who turn 5 years old between September-December. Early Kindergarten has a $30 testing fee, $50 registration fee and $250 monthly tuition.

Specials: PE and Art

Class Average: Kindergarten is 24 students; other grades levels is 25 students

Why enroll at ACA: This charter school is the only school in the area to offer the Kindergarten for a child with a “late” birthday, if that is what you want. They also boast low class sizes, compared to most other area schools.

How to enroll: The first step is to enroll in the Interest List online.

When to enroll: Enrollment applications will be accepted November 30th through January 28th. The random lottery takes place on March 9, 2016.

(623) 974-4959

16025 N. Dysart Rd,

Surprise 85374


I will post updates to this blog so keep checking back!

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