It's a big step for our little ones!
Welcome to kindergarten and to Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS)! Our goal is to help you feel comfortable throughout the registration process.
5 Steps to Register Your Student
Parents of students entering kindergarten should follow the instructions on this page to complete the 5-step process for student enrollment.
Our full-day kindergarten programs are housed in our elementary schools, which host kindergarten orientations, typically in the spring. Check your local school website for specific details. Find your local school by entering your address in the FCPS Boundary Locator.
Military families will register using the 5-step process below; however, see Military Families: Planning your Arrival to Fairfax County for additional student registration information to help with the transition.
Video about 5-Step Registration Process
Video in Spanish
5-Step Registration Process - Written Instructions
Two factors determine a student's eligibility to enroll in FCPS: residency and age.
Children must be living with a parent and residing in Fairfax County.
A child may enter kindergarten if he or she turns five on or before September 30 of the year he or she enters school.
This age requirement also applies to students who transfer from other school districts after the start of the school year.
The age requirement is set by Virginia law, and FCPS is not able to make exceptions.
Is kindergarten mandatory?
Virginia law states that parents must ensure a child attends school, if he or she will be five years old on or before September 30.
However, if, in your opinion as a parent, your child is not mentally, physically, or emotionally prepared to attend school, he or she may be exempted for that year. You will need to notify your local school if you do not want your child to attend kindergarten until the following year.
Once a student turns six, school attendance is mandatory. Grade placement (either kindergarten or first grade) will be determined at the time of enrollment with consideration for factors such as age, academic records, and school readiness.
Planning to home school your kindergartner?
See Home Instruction for the option for home schooling your child.
You will register either at your local school or at the closest Student Registration Welcome Center.
Before the Beginning of the School Year
All kindergarten students registering before the beginning of the school year will register at the local school.
After the Beginning of the School Year
If you are registering your kindergarten student after the beginning of the school year, please fill out the Home Language Survey form (link below) in order to start the registration process. The form must be completed for all students registering in our schools.
Home Language Survey
The survey results will help us direct you to the location of an appropriate registrar who can help you at any point in the registration process.
Kindergarten students registering after the beginning of the school year who have English as the only language shown on the Home Language Survey will register at the local school.
Kindergarten students registering after the beginning of the school who have a language other than or in addition to English on the Home Language Survey will register at the closest Student Registration Welcome Center:
- Dunn Loring Center (central Fairfax) , 703-204-6740,
- Lake Anne/Reston Center (northwest Fairfax), 703-668-0690
- South County Center ( southeast Fairfax in Alexandria), 703-742-4900
At FCPS Student Registration Welcome Centers, you can ask questions and request information about enrollment in most languages. At the centers, professionals may assess your student's English language skill and/or educational level. These assessments can provide valuable information to the local school and support your child's instructional needs.
Special Registration Situations
Depending on circumstances (nonparent registrations, divorced or separated parents, homelessness, foster care and foreign exchange students), you will register at either the local school or a Student Registration Welcome Center. Please see Special Registration Situations.
Parents registering their children must provide several documents including proof of residency in Fairfax County, child's birth certificate, parent's government issued identification, child's health information, and child's immunizations.
See General Registration Documents (link below) for complete information regarding necessary documentation.
Please bring the registration documents to your appointment with a registrar (see Step 5).
General Registration Documents
A parent will need to fill out a Pre-Kindergarten Experience Form and the packet of General Registration Forms for each child being registered. (Links to forms below.)
For the General Registration Forms, be sure to select the Enrollment Forms Bundle option to access all the necessary forms at once. Or pick up printed forms at the closest Student Registration Welcome Center or the local school office. For local school pick up, be sure to call ahead so the forms can be ready for you when you arrive.
Pre-Kindergarten Experience Form
General Registration FormsView Forms
Because we do not offer online registration, you will need to download the forms to a computer, fill them out on the computer and print them. Or you can print the forms and fill them out by hand.
Please bring the completed registration forms to your appointment with a registrar (see Step 5).
The student and at least one parent must be present for the registration appointment at a school or a Student Registration Welcome Center.
Please try to arrive with your registration documents and completed registration forms.
Questions? Our registrars at local schools or at Student Registration Welcome Centers are available to assist families and students at any time during the registration process.
We look forward to partnering with you to support your child's educational journey in FCPS.
A student is expected to attend the school that serves his or her attendance area. However, student transfer information is available if a parent would like to transfer a student from a base school to another school within FCPS. Transfer requests are considered for very specific reasons as outlined in FCPS School Board Regulation 2230.
You must first be registered at a neighborhood school before submitting a request for student transfer.