Thank you for your interest in the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools and welcome to the application and admission process. Our goal is to support your effort to find a school that fits your child’s and family’s needs.

Because the Laboratory Schools are part of the world-renowned University of Chicago, the importance of intellectual life—of thought and exploration—infuses everything we do across all aspects of our curriculum.

The Lab community—teachers, parents, students—cares deeply about curiosity, creativity, inquiry, and scholarship. Because multiculturalism and diversity are essential to academic excellence, the Schools work to assemble a student body that reflects the many differences that shape our world. This diversity is a major reason many families are interested in Lab.

A Note About University- and Lab-affiliated Applicants

The Admissions Office gives priority to children of University- and Lab-affiliated individuals. The processes described in these pages are consistent with how in past years Lab has managed applications from affiliated families.

An Overview of Lab Admissions

Like many independent schools, Lab’s admission process, and especially the number of available openings, varies by grade level, and from year to year.

The primary entry points for students to join the Laboratory Schools are Nursery 3 (three-year-olds) and ninth grade. The following are general overviews of the openings Lab may have at certain grade levels in any given year:

  • Nursery 3: Lab is able to welcome approximately 130 new students each year to our three-year-old nursery school class. Click here to learn more and apply. 

  • Ninth grade : The size of the high school, plus attrition, means U-High can welcome approximately 35 new students each year.  Click here to learn more and apply

  • All other grades : Attrition may open up a few spaces (in rare instances as many as eight to ten) in grades other than N3 or nine. Please understand that it is not unusual for Lab to have no openings for a grade, but that situation can change late in the admission process. For that reason, Lab still encourages families to show their interest by filling out an initial application. There is no fee for the initial application. Approximately one week after we receive a family’s initial application, we will send an email regarding next steps in the application process.  Click here to learn more and to start an initial application. 

  • Important Information Regarding 3rd Grade : In the 2015-16 school year, Lab will add an  additional section in the third grade, which would allow for approximately 20 additional openings. We urge families interested in third grade to complete an initial application, online here.

Because community is valued greatly by the University of Chicago and by the Laboratory Schools, priority is given to children of University- and Lab-affiliated individuals.

About Financial Aid

  • For full consideration, a separate financial aid application must be completed between November 1, 2014 and January 31, 2015.
  • More information is online here. 
  • Ability to pay is not a consideration during Lab’s admissions process. While financial aid is designed to help shrink the gap between what a family can afford and the cost of a Lab education, all families are expected to contribute some portion towards tuition and fees.

Contact Us

General Inquiries
Arcelia Guerrero Wolfe and Dana Jordan
Phone: 773-702-9451 Fax: 773-702-1520

Irene M. Reed, ’92 Executive Director of Admissions and Financial Aid

Elaine Woerner Associate Director of Admissions, Nursery and Kindergarten

Kerry Tulson
Assistant Director of Admissions