Kindergarten FAQ’s

Where do families go to apply for kindergarten?

In general, a student is to enroll in the school within the boundary lines of legal residence of the parent or legal guardian. Parents/guardians go to their neighborhood school to register their child. Parents can call 215-400-4290 to find out which school is their neighborhood school or go to www.philasd.org click on “Find My School” under the “Schools” Tab, or go to “School Finder”.

How old must my child be to attend kindergarten?

A child must be 5 years old by September 1st of the year they wish to enroll in Kindergarten. If a child turns 5 years old on September 2nd they must register for a Pre-kindergarten program. The School District of Philadelphia does not test for early admission to kindergarten under any circumstances.

What are the eligibility requirements for kindergarten?

A child must meet the age requirement of 5 years old by September 1st of the year in which they wish to enroll.

How do I register my child for kindergarten?

Visit your neighborhood school. Be sure to bring:

A.      Proof of child’s age (One of the following is required)

  • Child’s original birth certificate
  • Notarized copy of the child’s birth certificate
  • Child’s valid passport
  • Original baptismal certificate indicating the child’s date of birth
  • Copy of the record of baptism – notarized or duly certified and showing the date of birth
  • Notarized statement from the parents or another relative indicating the date of birth
  • Prior school records indicating the date of birth

B.      The child’s current Immunization Record

C.       Parent/Legal Guardianship Identification (One of the following is required)

  • Current Drivers License/ Non-Drivers license
  • Valid Federal, State or Municipal employment photo identification
  • Passport

D.      Proof of Address (Two of the following is required)  

  • Deed
  • Mortgage settlement sheet
  • Current utility bill (gas, electric, cable, telephone)
  • Recent property tax bill
  • Valid driver’s license or change of address card with your current address
  • Letter from Social Security Office with current address
  • Letter from Public Assistance Office with current address
  • Foster care/childcare and DHS letters are acceptable for registration when a student is in the care of a foster/child care agency
  • Original lease with name(s) of parents/legal guardians and children
  • Valid DOT identification card
  • Current credit card bill
  • Recent vehicle registration
  • Voter Registration Card showing current address
  • Recent bank statement with current address
  • IRS Statement or other wage and tax statements e.g., W2, 1040, 1099
  • Recent Employer Pay Stub showing current address
  • Shelter placement or residency letters are acceptable for homeless students
  • Signed property sales agreement, followed by original copy of settlement papers within 45 calendar days of settlement

D.1- Homeless Youth and Families

  • Homeless youth are entitled to immediate enrollments and their families are not required to prove residency regarding school enrollment. Included within the definition of homeless children and youth are those who are “awaiting foster care placement” and “unaccompanied homeless youth.”  These students should be enrolled without delay, in the district where they are presently residing, or continue their education in the district of prior attendance. See the McKinney-Vento Act, 42 U.S.C. §11431 et seq.

*It is suggested that you contact the school to obtain hours for registration.

Who can I contact for services?

Contact The Office of Student Enrollment & Placement

Are uniforms required for kindergarten students?

Information regarding the District’s adopted uniform policy will be given at the parent interview/orientation. Please consult with your teacher at that time.

Is kindergarten full day?

Kindergarten is a full day program. The hours will be the same as the rest of the school population.

What is the cut-off date to enroll children in kindergarten?

The process for enrolling children in kindergarten is ongoing.

What if the parent does not wish for the child to attend the neighborhood school?

For the current school year parents/guardians must always register their child for kindergarten in the neighborhood school first. The School Selection Process is for students and families who wish to apply to a school outside of their neighborhood boundaries for admission into grades K-12 for the following school year. For more information visit: https://www.philasd.org/studentplacement/services/school-selection/

Is transportation provided for kindergarten children?

Parents must provide their own transportation for kindergarten children who are not in walking distance of the school. However, transportation is provided ONLY for Kindergarten students whose IEP qualifies them for this service. Please refer to the transportation web page for more information regarding exceptions to this rule.

What happens when the neighborhood school is full?

Every effort will be made to enroll all kindergarten children who have registered in the neighborhood school. However, when the neighborhood school’s kindergarten is full, the Office of Student Enrollment and Placement will be a resource to schools and families on an individual basis to assist them with the process.

Who can I contact if I have questions about the Kindergarten Entry Inventory (KEI) or Parent Interviews?

For additional information regarding the Kindergarten Entry Inventory (KEI) or parent interviews, please contact:

–  Doria Mitchell, Director, K-3 Early Literacy and Special Projects, dnmitchell@philasd.org

–  Sharai Cunningham, Special Project Assistant, K-3 Early Literacy, shcunningham@philasd.org