All students new or re-entering Washington County Public Schools (WCPS) must provide verification of age, custody, residency and immunizations. A parent or guardian must take that required information to the school in his or her attendance zone (School Locator Map) to enroll the child on site. For additional information regarding special circumstances call the Department of Student Services at 301-766-2960/2961.
Verification of Identity
- The parent or court appointed legal guardian of the student must be physically present in order for school enrollment to occur.
- To validate the identity of the parent/guardian responsible for the student’s enrollment, photo identification must be provided at the time of enrollment.
Verification of Age
- A child age 5 by September 1 and under age 21 on the first day of school is eligible for enrollment.
- Acceptable age verification includes:
- Birth certification
- Valid passport/visa
Verification of Custody
- Only a custodial parent or court-appointed custodial guardian may enroll a student in WCPS.
- Legal custody, not simply physical custody, must be verified at the time of enrollment.
- Any legal documentation pertaining to custody must be provided at the time of enrollment.
- A student will NOT be enrolled with a notarized statement indicating a transfer of custody.
- Those in the process of transferring or modifying custody of a student must present the following:
- a copy of the completed Complaint for Custody Form (DR4) or Petition/Motion to Modify Custody Form (DR7) with time and date stamp
- a receipt for the payment of the filing fee
- a copy of the Answer to Complaint Form (DR50), with time and date stamp, indicating consent to the custody action
Verification of Residency
A student who resides in Washington County with his/her custodial parent/guardian will be enrolled in the school in his/her school attendance area with appropriate residency documentation. (See WCPS Interactive School District Map.)
- Acceptable residency verification includes:
- Lease or mortgage bill/statement
- Utility bill (water/sewer/gas/electric/oil)
- Real estate tax bill/statement
- Deed, title or statement sheet
- Acceptable residency verification includes:
- Documentation must be current (dated within 3 months of enrollment) and must include the custodial parent/guardian’s name, address, and date.
- Current residency documentation must be provided for each change of address, even within the county.
Families living in shared housing:
- Notarized Parent Residency Affidavit Multi-Family Disclosure Form is required.
- Acceptable verification of residency must be provided by primary resident or property owner.
- Annual update is required.
- If homelessness is a possibility, a Student in Transition Enrollment Form should be completed.
Verification of Immunization and Health Status
- Immunization Records (computerized immunization printout from physician’s office is acceptable)
- Physical Examination Record
- Blood Lead Testing Certificate
Students in Transition
Students experiencing homelessness (recent loss of housing) may be entitled to specific rights under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. For additional information call the Department of Student Services at 301-766-2823.
Formal Kinship Care
Formal kinship care refers to a living arrangement where a student is placed by a state agency in the home of a relative.
- Documentation from the agency making the placement must be provided.
- No affidavit or further verification is required.
Informal Kinship Care
Informal kinship care refers to a living arrangement in which a relative of a child, who is a Maryland resident and NOT in the care, custody or guardianship of the Department of Social Services (DSS), provides for the care and custody of the child due to a serious family hardship. The law defines a serious family hardship as:
- Death of a parent or legal guardian of the child
- Serious illness of a parent or legal guardian of the child
- Drug addiction of a parent or legal guardian of the child
- Incarceration of a parent or legal guardian of the child
- Abandonment by a parent or legal guardian of the child
- Assignment of a parent or legal guardian of the child to active military duty
The law applies to only a child and parent/guardian who were Maryland residents (resided in the state of Maryland for at least six months) PRIOR to going into informal kinship care.
The relative providing the informal kinship care must:
- be an adult related to the child by blood or marriage
- verify the informal kinship care relationship through a sworn affidavit (which can be obtained at any school or the Department of Student Services)
- provide supporting documentation including, when possible, the telephone number and address of anyone legally authorized to reveal information that can be used to verify the information in the affidavit
- provide accurate information about the child’s last address and school attended prior going into kinship care
The affidavit and supporting documentation may be filed at any time and must be filed annually; at least two weeks prior to the start of the school year.