Enrollment FAQ


The following are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the enrollment and registration process for District 401 students. 

To see the answer to a particular question, simply click the plus sign (or any other part of the question).

As District 401 uses the two terms, they are essentially interchangeable. They both refer to the process of making sure a student is officially part of the District.

All District 401 students, whether new or returning, must enroll or re-enroll each school year. 

A student is "new" if he or she did NOT attend a District 401 school the previous school year or if the student is entering preschool or kindergarten. 

A student entering preschool or kindergarten is considered "new" even if he or she attended the Early Childhood Center the previous year.

A student is "returning" if he or she is entering 1st grade or above and DID attend a District 401 school the previous year.

No. All District 401 students must be Elmwood Park residents by the start of the new school year. A student's residence is the same as the person who has legal custody of the student.

The District's residency requirement and related procedures are governed by Section 7:60 of the Board of Education's District Policy Manual.

Families must submit District 401's Proof of Residency Form. This form can be obtained here, and it requires three supporting documents. See the form for details.

A student's proof of residency must be supplied to District 401, or the student will be not be scheduled for classes. This requirement applies to all students, new and returning.

If your student is new to the District during the school year, bring your residency documents to your home school.

If your child is a returning student, all proof of residency must be sent to the District 401 Registrar’s Office, which is located at Elmwood Park High School. Please mail your proof-of-residency documents to:

Kim Kaminski, Registrar
Elmwood Park High School
8201 W. Fullerton Ave.
Elmwood Park, IL 60707

As an alternative to mailing, you may fax your documents to this number:

► 708-452-0732

Or you may scan your documents and email them to the Registrar's Office at this address:

► registration@epcusd401.org

Because Elmwood Park borders several towns, the District is diligent in ensuring that only students who are Elmwood Park residents enroll in its public schools. 

Parents/legal custodians must provide documentary proof of residency every year, regardless of how many years they have lived in Elmwood Park.

Yes, District 401 may sometimes question the legitimacy of paperwork. 

When this occurs, the District has several options that can confirm or disprove residency:

► The District subscribes to a special database that has access to public records. 

► The District may also use a private investigations company to assist. 

In Illinois, it is a Class C misdemeanor to knowingly enroll or attempt to enroll a child in the wrong school district, or to knowingly or willfully present false information regarding the residency of a child for enrollment purposes. See 105 ILCS 5/10-20.12b(e)-(f)

In addition, parents/legal custodians are billed for each day of non-resident tuition.

No. A student is new if he or she did NOT attend any District 401 school the previous school year or if the student is entering preschool or kindergarten. 

Enrollment for new students in grades 1-12 begins in late July each year. Preschool and kindergarten enrollment begins several months earlier, in the spring. For the 2017-18 school year, new student enrollment for grades 1-12 begins July 25, 2017. 

Students entering preschool or kindergarten in 2017-18 may enroll at the Early Childhood Center any Tuesday or Friday between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. from May 1 to June 8, 2017. Enrollment will resume at the ECC on July 25.

For complete information about the enrollment process for new students, including links to all necessary forms, please visit the New/Transfer Students page on the District 401 home site. 

Information about re-enrollment for the upcoming year typically becomes available in early May.

For complete information about the enrollment/registration process for returning students, including links to all necessary forms, please visit the Returning Students page on the District 401 home site. 

Yes. Enrollment or re-enrollment in District 401 requires the payment of school fees. The amount for each school is set by the District 401 Board of Education. A complete list of school fees for 2017-18 is available here. Full payment is due Sept 1, 2017. New students who arrive after the due date have 30 days to pay their fees after they enroll in the District.

No. Any homeless child shall be immediately admitted, even if the child or child's parent/guardian is unable to produce records normally required to establish residency. 

A homeless child may attend the District 401 school that the child attended when permanently housed or in which the child was last enrolled. A homeless child living in any district school’s attendance area may attend that school. 

For more information, please contact District 401’s liaison for homeless children, Dr. Kathleen Porreca, the principal of Elm Middle School. She can be reached by phone at 708-452-3550 or by email at this address

A “homeless child” is defined as provided in the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act and the Illinois Education for Homeless Children Act.


► McKinney-Vento Definition


As defined by Section 725 of the McKinney-Vento Act, the term "homeless children and youth" means individuals who lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence. This includes:

  • Children and youths who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement;

  • Children and youths 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 (within the meaning of Section 103(a)(2)(C) of the statute);

  • Children and youths who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings;

  • Migratory children (as such term is defined in Section 1309 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965) who qualify as homeless for the purposes of this subtitle because the children are living in circumstances described in the three previous clauses.


► Illinois Education for Homeless Children Definition


As provided in the Illinois statute (105 ILCS 45/1-5), a homeless person, child or youth includes, but is not limited to, any of the following: An individual who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime place of abode, or an individual who has a primary nighttime place of abode that is:

  • A supervised publicly or privately operated shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations (including welfare hotels, congregate shelters, and transitional housing);

  • An institution that provides a temporary residence for individuals intended to be institutionalized; or

  • A public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.

You should have received your enrollment/registration materials by mail. If you never received them, please contact Ms. Nancy Laselle in the District Office by phone at 708-583-5831 or by email at this address.