LODI PUBLIC SCHOOLS
* Please note that if your child was ever enrolled in the Lodi school system, you are not required to complete the pre-registration process outlined in the below link. Please skip to the "Required Personal Documention" instructions on this page.
* Please click here to begin the pre-registration process
* Please click here for a district map and street list to determine which elementary school services your neighborhood
REQUIRED PERSONAL DOCUMENTATION
• Birth Certificate
• Natural parent or proof of guardianship
• Immunization Records
• Academic Records (transcript, report card, standardized test results)
• Individualized Education Plan and/or 504 Plan
REQUIRED RESIDENCY DOCUMENTATION
The following forms of documentation may demonstrate a student's eligibility for enrollment in the district. The totality of information and documentation you offer will be considered in evaluating an application, and, unless expressly required by law, the student will not be denied enrollment based on your inability to provide certain form(s) of documentation where other acceptable evidence is presented.
Three–(3) documents that indicate that the child is domiciled in the district are required as follows:
One–(1) from Group I and two–(2) from Group II; or
If none from Group I then, three–(3) from Group II; (please note that this will result in an automatic referral to the Borough of Lodi for a Verification of Address); or
If none from Groups I or II, go to Group III and contact the District's McKinney-Vento Coordinator, Jamie E. Ciofalo, 973-478-6100 x. 20, firstname.lastname@example.org
• Property tax bill
• Contract of sale
• If none of the above are presented, please complete and submit the Residency Affidavit
• Utility Bill and/or
• Other Bill
• License and/or
• Local/State/Federal Government Document
• Financial Statement
• Medical Report
• Court Order
• Any Business Record
• Cancelled Check
• Benefits Statement
• Other Evidence of Personal Attachment to a Particular Location
• Voter Registration
• Documents Pertaining To Military Status and Assignment
• Employment Document
• Counselor or Social Worker Assessments
Group III – contact the District's McKinney-Vento Coordinator
• Other pieces of evidence of circumstances demonstrating, where applicable, family or economic hardship, or temporary residency.
You will not be asked for any information or document protected from disclosure by law, or pertaining to criteria which are not legitimate bases for determining eligibility to attend school. You may voluntarily disclose any document or information you believe will help establish that the student meets the requirements of law for entitlement to attend school in the district, but we may not, directly or indirectly, require or request:
• Income tax returns
• Documentation/information relating to citizenship or immigration/visa status, unless the student holds or is applying for an F-1 visa
• Documentation/information relating to compliance with local housing ordinances or conditions of tenancy
• Social security numbers
• If you experience difficulties with the enrollment process, please contact the building principal for assistance
The Lodi Public Schools Registration Process will enable us to determine your student's eligibility to attend school in this district in accordance with New Jersey law. Please be aware that N.J.S.A. 18A:38-1 and N.J.A.C. 6A:22 require that a free public education be provided to students between the ages of 5 and 20, and to certain students under 5 and over 20 as specified in other applicable law, who are:
• Domiciled in the district, i.e., the child of a parent or guardian, or an adult student, whose permanent home is located within the district. A home is permanent when the parent, guardian or adult student intends to return to it when absent and has no present intent of moving from it, notwithstanding the existence of homes or residences elsewhere;
• Living with a person, other than the parent or guardian, who is domiciled in the district and is supporting the student without compensation, as if the student were his or her own child, because the parent cannot support the child due to family or economic hardship;
• Living with a person domiciled in the district, other than the parent or guardian, where the parent/guardian is a member of the New Jersey National Guard or the reserve component of the U.S. armed forces and has been ordered into active military service in the U.S. armed forces in time of war or national emergency;
• Living with a parent or guardian who is temporarily residing in the district;
• The child of a parent or guardian who moves to another district as the result of being homeless;
• Placed in the home of a district resident by court order pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:38-2;
• The child of a parent or guardian who previously resided in the district but is a member of the New Jersey National Guard or the United States reserves and has been ordered to active service in time of war or national emergency, resulting in relocation of the student, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:38-3(b);
• Residing on federal property within the State pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A:38-7.7 et seq.
Under N.J.S.A. 18A:38-1(a), a student who is under the age of 18 is "domiciled" in a school district, and thereby entitled to attend school in the district, if his or her parent or legal guardian is "domiciled" in that district.6 A student who has reached the age of 18 may establish his or her own domicile. Domicile is the place where a person lives in his or her fixed, permanent home. This home must be the place to which he or she intends to return when he or she goes away, and from which he or she has no intention of moving anytime soon. A person can have only one "domicile" at a time, even if he or she has more than one home. (Educational Law Center)
Note that "guardian" means a person to whom a court of competent jurisdiction has awarded guardianship or custody of a child, provided that a residential custody order shall entitle a child to attend school in the residential custodian's school district subject to a rebuttable presumption that the child is actually living with such custodian; it also means the Department of Children and Families for purposes of N.J.S.A. 18A:38-1(e). Also note that a student is entitled to attend school in the district of domicile notwithstanding that the student is qualified to attend school in a different district as an "affidavit" student or temporary resident.
Note that the following do not affect a student's eligibility to enroll in school:
• Physical condition of housing or compliance with local housing ordinances or terms of lease
• Immigration/visa status, except for students holding or seeking a visa (F-1) issued specifically for the purpose of limited study on a tuition basis in a United States public secondary school
• Absence of a certified copy of birth certificate or other proof of a student's identity, although these must be provided within 30 days of initial enrollment pursuant to N.J.S.A. 18A: 36-25.1
• Absence of student medical information, although actual attendance at school may be deferred as necessary in compliance with rules regarding immunization of students, N.J.A.C. 8:57-4.1 et seq.
• Absence of a student's prior educational record, although the initial educational placement of the student may be subject to revision upon receipt of records or further assessment by the district
Student Must Be Presently Domiciled in the District
The parent or guardian must be presently domiciled in the school district. If a family moves from a district, even at the end of a school year, the student no longer has the right to attend school in that district. Similarly, a parent or guardian's future intent to be domiciled in a district does not give a student the right to attend school within the district. For example, a family intends to purchase a new home and move into a new school district in November. In order to avoid disruption in their child's education, the family attempts to enroll the student in school in the new district at the start of the school year in September. That student has no statutory right to attend school in the new district, and may rightfully be denied admission. Parents and guardians seeking to enroll such a student, or to keep a student in a district's schools in order to complete a school year, should inquire with the board of education about the district's policy for admitting non-residents or about paying tuition for the period that the family is not actually domiciled in the district. Parents should be aware, however, that districts are not required to admit non-residents, and any policies relating to such admission are adopted at board discretion. (Educational Law Center)
While generally the domicile of a person under the age of 18 is presumed to be the same as that of the parent or legal guardian, a student can establish a domicile apart from the parent or guardian if he or she is emancipated. An emancipated minor is one who lives completely independent of parental control and financial support.16 A student under the age of 18 who is attempting to establish a domicile separate and apart from his or her parent or guardian bears the burden of proving his or her independence.17 An emancipated student is domiciled in the school district where she or he has established a permanent home. (Educational Law Center)
Children of Divorced or Separated Parents
If a student's parents are divorced or separated and residing in different school districts, then one of the parent's districts must be chosen as the student's domicile. Where there is no court order or written agreement between divorced or separated parents designating a district for school attendance, the student is domiciled with the parent with whom the student resides for the majority of the school year, regardless of which parent In situations where the student spends equal time with both parents and does not live with either one of the parents for the majority of the school year, and where there is no court order or written agreement designating the district for school attendance, the student's domicile is the present domicile of the parent with whom the student resided on the last school day prior to October 16 preceding the date of application for enrollment. Thus, in the absence of a court order or written agreement designating the district for school attendance, a student spending equal time with both parents, who enrolls in school in September, will be considered domiciled in the present school district of the parent with whom the student was residing on the last school day prior to October 16.
However, if the same student resided with both parents, or with neither parent, on the last school day before the preceding October 16th, the parents must indicate where the student will be residing on the last school day prior to the following October 16, and the domicile of the parent with whom the student will be residing then becomes the domicile of the student. For example, if the student lived with both parents throughout October but the parents subsequently separated and alternated physical custody equally, the district in which the student is entitled to attend school is the district of the parent with whom the student will be residing on the last school day prior to October 16. If the parents do not designate, or cannot agree on, the student's likely residence on the last school day prior to the next October 16th, or if on that date the student does not end up residing with the parent previously indicated, the student will attend school in the district where the parent, with whom he or she is actually living as of the last school day prior to October 16, is domiciled.
These rules also apply in situations where one of the student's parents temporarily resides in a district and the other is either domiciled or temporarily residing in another district. In this particular case, a district may require a parent or legal guardian to demonstrate that this temporary residence is not solely for purposes of the student attending school within the district of temporary residence.
Please note that when transportation is required for a child whose parents are divorced or separated, the school district that is the district of domicile for school attendance purposes is only required to provide transportation based upon the home of the parent domiciled in the district. Thus, even if the student alternates between his or her parents' homes, the student need only be transported to the home of the parent who lives in the district where the student attends school has legal custody. (Educational Law Center)
STUDENTS UNDER THE GUARDIANSHIP OF DCP&P OR PLACED BY A STATE AGENCY
If a student is under the guardianship of the New Jersey Division of Child Protection & Permanency (DCP&P), and DCP&P places the student in foster care or a group home in a school district, that district is required to enroll the student. So, a student is a resident of the district where he or she is living while under DCP&P guardianship. If a student is in a residential state facility, or has been placed by a state agency (other than DCP&P) in a group home, private school or out-of-state facility, although the student must be permitted to attend school in the district where he or she resides, the present school district of the parent or guardian with whom the student lived prior to the most recent placement is responsible for the cost of the student's education. If the district with financial responsibility cannot be determined, or if the student's parent or guardian resides outside the state, the state of New Jersey must assume financial responsibility for the student's tuition at a public school. (Educational Law Center)
AFFIDAVIT of GUARDIANSHIP
Students are not eligible to attend school as "affidavit" students unless the student's parent or guardian is not capable of supporting or providing care for the student due to family or economic hardship, and unless it is clear that the student is not living in the district solely for purposes of receiving a public education there. Please explain the circumstances applicable in this case, with special attention to the parent/guardian's family and/or economic hardship. (The parent/guardian will be required to file a sworn statement with documentation to support the claims made.)
If the person domiciled in the district, is supporting the student without remuneration as if the student were his or her own child, keeping the student for a longer time than the school term and assuming all personal obligations for the student relative to school requirements, then the child may qualify to be enrolled under the Affidavit of Guardianship. (You will be asked to file a sworn statement, along with a copy of the person's lease if a tenant, or a sworn landlord's statement if a tenant without written lease.)
Please note: A student will not be considered ineligible because required sworn statements(s) cannot be obtained, so long as evidence is presented that the underlying requirements of the law are being met.
A student will not be considered ineligible when evidence is presented that the student has no home or possibility of school attendance other than with a non-parent district resident who is acting as the sole caretaker and supporter of the student.
A student will not be considered ineligible solely because a parent or guardian provides gifts or limited contributions, financial or otherwise, toward the welfare of the student, provided that the resident keeping the student receives no payment or other remuneration from the parent or guardian for the student's actual housing and support. Receipt by the resident of social security or other similar benefits on behalf of the student do not render a student ineligible.
It is not necessary that guardianship or custody be obtained before a student will be considered for enrollment on an "affidavit" basis.
McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth
What is the purpose of the McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth (McKinney-Vento) program?
The McKinney-Vento program is designed to address the problems that homeless children and youth have faced in enrolling, attending, and succeeding in school. Under this program, State educational agencies ensure that each homeless child and youth has equal access to the same free, appropriate public education, including a public preschool education, as other children and youth.
What is meant by the term "homeless children and youth"?
The McKinney-Vento Act defines "homeless children and youth" as individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. The term includes:
• children and youth who are: sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason (sometimes referred to as doubled-up);
• living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to lack of alternative adequate accommodations;
• living in emergency or transitional shelters; abandoned in hospitals; or awaiting foster care placement;
• children and youth who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;
• children and youth who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
• migratory children who qualify as homeless because they are living in circumstances described above.
A student may qualify as a Temporary Resident if the student is living with a parent or guardian temporarily residing within the district, even if the parent has a domicile elsewhere.
All general registration requirements are applicable including the submission of three-(3) forms of proof that demonstrate that you are residing at the address given, and that such residence is not solely for the purpose of the student attending school in the district.
If the student's parents are domiciled in different districts, regardless of which parent has custody, you will be required to answer the following questions:
• Is there a court order or written agreement between the parents designating the district for school attendance, and if so, where does it require the student to attend school? (You will be asked to provide a copy of this document.)
• Does the student reside with one parent for the entire year? If so, with which parent and at what address?
• If not, for what portion of time does the student reside with each parent and at what addresses?
• If the student lives with both parents on an equal-time, alternating week/month or other similar basis, with which parent did the student reside on the last school day prior to October 16 preceding the date of this application?
Please note: No district is required, as a result of being the district of temporary residence for school attendance purposes where a student lives with more than one parent, to provide transportation for a student residing outside the district for part of the school year, other than transportation based upon the home of the parent residing within the district to the extent required by law.
From time to time, there may be Special Circumstances not included in the areas indicated above. Please notify the district if any of the following apply:
• The student is the child of a parent or guardian who has moved to another district as the result of being homeless. (McKinney-Vento Affidavit required)
• The student has been placed in the home of a district resident other than the parent or guardian by court order. (Copy of Court Order required)
• The student has been placed in the district by the Department of Child Protection and Permanency acting as the student's guardian. (Official DCP&P notification required)
• The student is a child of a parent or guardian who previously resided in the district and is a member of the New Jersey National Guard or the United States reserves ordered to active service in time of war or national emergency, resulting in relocation of the student.
• The student is kept in the home of a person domiciled in the district, other than the parent or guardian, and the parent/guardian a member of the New Jersey National Guard or the reserve component of the United States armed forces and has been ordered into active military service in the United States armed forces in time of war or national emergency.
• The student resides on federal property
DEFECT IN APPLICATION/POTENTIAL INELIGIBILITY
Please be advised that if an enrollment application has defects as noted below, the student shall be enrolled on a preliminary basis. If these defects are not corrected within the specified time, you will be notified that, unless you file an appeal, the student will be removed from school. If that occurs, you will be provided with information on how to appeal the removal to the Commissioner of Education.
Reasons for Defect/Potential Ineligibility
• None or insufficient proof of Domicile/Residency at address where you claim to live
• None or insufficient proof of Guardianship or custody of student
• None or insufficient proof that you are supporting student financially and/or that parents are incapable of caring for student due to family or economic hardship (applies only to residents enrolling students of whom they are not parents or guardians/custodians)
Please contact the building principal if you experience difficulties with the enrollment process.