J- 2 Children Study Options

How to register your child in school in New Jersey

Children of J-1 students may enroll full time in any elementary or secondary school (kindergarten through twelfth grade). Once you have found your residence in New Jersey, you can start the process of enrolling your child in school. J-2 children (21years old and under) can also enroll in higher education. 

The school year generally starts in September and ends in June, with several breaks throughout the year. Public schools may run a different calendar than private schools. Children can be enrolled for kindergarten when they are 5 years old (by the school district's cutoff date).

What is a school district?

A school district is a geographical unit for the local administration of schools.

What documents do I need to bring from my home country?

  1. Your child’s original birth certificate
  2. A copy of your child’s last school report if they have already attended school
  3. A list of immunizations (vaccinations) that your child has received. It is best to have this translated into English.

What other documents will I need?

  1. Proof of residency, such as a copy of your lease that shows your address in New Jersey. The required documents can vary depending on the school district.

Will I need a social security number?

No.  A social security number is not required to enroll your child in school.

How do I find a school?

The State of New Jersey Department of Education website lists all schools in their school directory. The school directory search allows you to search for a public or non-public school by county. Once you find your county on the list you can visit the website for that county’s school district. Each school district website may be different. You will have to read the information provided and follow their specific instructions to register a child in the appropriate school. In some cases, you might have to go to the particular school’s website and register directly with them. In other cases, the district might have a central registration process. Once you know which school you would like your child to attend, you can contact them directly with questions and they will guide you through the process.

What other information can I find on the school’s website?

The school’s website will provide you useful information such as the yearly calendar of events, list of supplies your child will need for school, school policies (dress code, pick-up, and drop-off policies…) and information about their teachers.

What if my child has special needs?

If your child has special needs, you should inform the school about it as soon as possible, during the registration process. For more information please review Special Education.

If your child lacks English proficiency, ask the school about ESL (English as a second language) accommodations and support.