What is the METCO Program?

The METCO program is a state-funded grant program that promotes diversity and educational opportunity for more than 3,300 Boston and Springfield school students, as well as thousands of students in the METCO receiving school districts. The METCO program was started in the 1960s to provide enhanced educational opportunities for participating students, to reduce the racial isolation of suburban school districts, and to reduce segregation in city schools.

Who is eligible to participate in the METCO Program?

To enroll a child in the METCO program in Boston, application must be made in person at the METCO, Inc. office, located at 40 Dimock Street, Roxbury. Applicants must be African-American, Latino, Asian, or of Native American descent and reside in the City of Boston. To sign up for the program a parent must provide proof of residency and a birth certificate. Registered students are placed on a waiting list until they are selected for placement. METCO, Inc. works with the family to prepare an enrollment folder. Once the intake process is completed and the school records are received in full, METCO, Inc. forwards the applicant’s enrollment folder to school districts with openings for the particular grade level needed. Ultimately, placement decisions are based upon:

  • Completion of the METCO application packet
  • Submission of all school records
  • Date of registration
  • District grade and seat availability
  • Presence of siblings on the waiting list
  • Special education status (students with existing special education placement determinations that call for out-of-district placement are generally not participants in METCO since the purpose of the program is participation in the district schools)
  • Race (in the past ten years, increased efforts have been made to have the METCO program reflect better the diversity of Boston Public Schools)