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Top Five Registration Issues

Published August 2019

  1. Birth Certificate. School may require proof of date of birth to ensure the child is school age by Sept 15. However, schools cannot require the proof be a birth certificate. Reasonable alternatives include an adoption record, certified statement of a physician, an immunization record with birthdate, or anything else that is reasonably reliable.
  2. Age Requirements. Under Iowa Code section 282.3 a child MUST be five on or before Sept. 15 to enter kindergarten and must be six on or before Sept. 15 to enter first grade.
    1. An Attorney General Opinion states this is the law and cannot be waived.
    2. A solution is to enroll the child, when legal do to so in kindergarten, and if appropriate the district can promote the student to first grade as soon as warranted.
    3. Iowa Code section 282.3 provides one exception to the requirement that a child be 6 before Sept. 15 to enter first grade. If the child completed kindergarten in a school district in another state or in an accredited nonpublic school in Iowa, the child may be enrolled in first grade.
    4. The Interstate Compact for the Education of Military Children also provides an exception for a child who moves into Iowa because of the deployment of a parent.
  3. Social Security Numbers. Social Security numbers are not required by the state for registration.
  4. Legal Names. Students must be registered using the child’s legal name under Rule 12.3(4). Preferred names may be noted with an asterisks in the permanent record and may be used on JMC, PowerSchool, and Infinite Campus, class lists, yearbooks, or other outward facing school lists.
  5. Addresses. Do not accept a P.O. Box for an address unless it is known for certain the family resides there. Schools have a right to know the student’s address for residency purposes since this determines if the student is your resident.  For those with multiple addresses, it may be helpful to ask which home is used as the main residence for tax purposes.