How to Register for Boston Public Schools During COVID-19

Black woman at laptop computer registering her child for school

Registration for Boston Public Schools begins on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021. Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, some parts of the registration process look a little different this year. Here's what you need to know to register your child on time.

The BPS school registration process is comprised of two key parts: ranking your schools and verifying your residency in the City of Boston. Currently, all BPS Welcome Centers are temporarily closed due to the pandemic, so most of the paperwork and processes you would do in-person at a Welcome Center can be completed online and over the phone.

Click here to view this video in Spanish.

1. Know your child's BPS Priority Registration dates.

BPS conducts two priority rounds of registration. The first round of priority registration takes place from Tuesday, January 5, to Friday, January 29, 2021 for students entering grades K0, K1, 6, 7, and 9 in September 2021.

The second round of priority registration takes place Monday, February 8 through Monday, April 5, 2021 for students entering all other grades in September 2021: specifically, grades K2, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 11, and 12.

  • TIP: Not sure which K grade applies to your child? These K-level grades are determined by age, according to the following formula: If your child will be age _____ by Sep. 1, 2021, they are eligible to enter into grade ____.

    • Age 3 = Grade K0

    • Age 4 = Grade K1

    • Age 5 = Grade K2

Boston Public Schools Priority Registration Dates for School Year 2021 2022


2. Gather your required residency documents.

BPS requires a total of 5 individual documents to verify your child's residency in the City of Boston, but these documents must meet specific requirements, from types of acceptable documents to dates of when these documents were issued.

Due to the temporary closure of all BPS Welcome Centers, you will upload these documents online, so it's helpful to gather everything you need before you start your registration.

Here is a list of required residency documents you need to complete your registration. This Required Documents for BPS Registration Checklist is available in English, Spanish, Haitian Creole, Cabo Verdean, Vietnamese, Chinese, Portuguese, French, Arabic, and Somali at the link above.

  • TIP: If you are undocumented or don't have a permanent address, your child is still entitled to a free, public education at Boston Public Schools. Read our FAQ for more information about these special circumstances.

3. Pre-register for BPS and rank your schools online.

The pre-registration process allows you to complete your BPS registration paperwork online, such as filling out your child's information and ranking your schools. You still need to call by phone and speak with a Welcome Center Enrollment Specialist to complete school registration process, even if you pre-register. 

Pre-registration can even be completed the same day before you speak with a Welcome Center Enrollment Specialist.

4. Make your Welcome Center phone call appointment online to complete your registration.

To complete your registration process, you can speak to a Welcome Center Enrollment Specialist on the phone. While making a Welcome Center Enrollment Specialist phone call appointment is not required, we recommend families make an appointment that works best for their own schedules.

Additionally, you can schedule to speak with an Enrollment Specialist in your native language. Welcome Center phone calls are available in English, Spanish, Haitian Creole, Cabo Verdean, Vietnamese, Chinese, Portuguese, French, and Somali. 

  • TIP: Schedule your Welcome Center appointment here online.

To learn more about how to register your child for school in Boston, visit our School Registration Toolkit here.

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