CINCINNATI - Dozens of parents have been camping out in the bitter temperatures for days to ensure their kids get the education they need, and they will remain in the elements for more than a week more.
For the first time this year, Cincinnati Public Schools held a lottery for a percentage of the open slots. It took place in October. Parents who didn't win like John Sherrard are now left waiting on the front lawn of Fairview-Clifton German Language School even though open enrollment doesn't begin until Nov. 14.
"To get in this school, you have to stand in line or get in via a lottery," parent John Sherrard said. "We didn't get in by the lottery so we're now forced to stand in line to get enrolled on [Nov.] 14."
Sherrard is forced to stand in line since the school will fill only 28 more desks for next school year.
"Fairview has some of the best teachers, some of the best curriculum for K-6 and it's only a couple blocks from our house so it's very convenient for us," Sherrard said.
It is convenient for his 5-year-old who starts kindergarten next year. However, it is not as convenient for the parents who took off work, with a week and a half of waiting left to go.
"Whether I'm one or 28, as long as she has a spot, I'm gonna be in that line," parent Ronita Price said.
Price secured the first spot outside of the school on Friday.
She will be the first to step into the doors of the school at midnight Nov. 14 to enroll her 4-year-old daughter.
"I don't want my children to go to an academically failing school, so if I can get my children into a good school for free, that's what I'm going with," Price said.
Several children were also camping out with their families. They were finding out the hard way how much they are loved.
"I'll do anything for my kids," Sherrad said. "This is what I have to do."
There's a sense of community within the group of parents camping out. For example, when a camper needs to take a break for errands, other campers will save their spots.
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