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Registration Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about school registration:


We are moving to Vancouver.  Where do I register my child?

  • Please visit our registration site for more information. 
  • Registration at the Newcomer Welcome Center is required for:
  • All students not born in Canada
  • Grade 1 to Grade 12 students who do not speak English as their home language

Who should register at the Newcomer Welcome Center?

  • All students not born in Canada
  • Grade 1 to Grade 12 students who do not speak English as their home language

My child is attending a Vancouver Board of Education school, but we are moving to another area in the city.  What do I need to do?

Changing address during the school year

  • Please inform your current school.  The school staff will initiate your child’s transfer process to another school. Please bring the following documents for address change:
  • Your new rental agreement or property purchase agreement (with subjects removed). Schools may request a recent bill as well.
  • Proof of your identity WITH photo, such as a passport or citizenship/PR card.
    *Note: A drivers' license is NOT adequate.
  • Your child's most recent report card.

Changing address in the summer

  • If the new address is outside the current school's catchment area, families need to wait for the current elementary catchment school to reopen at the end of August to update their address.  Once this is done they should apply to the new catchment school.  For secondary students, please check with the school regarding summer office hours.  Please bring the following documents for address change:
  • Your new rental agreement or property purchase agreement (with subjects removed). Schools may request a recent bill as well.
  • Proof of your identity WITH photo, such as a passport or citizenship/PR card.
    *Note: A drivers' license is NOT adequate.
  • Your child's most recent report card.

If the new address is in the same school's catchment area, families can update their address with the school office when their child returns to school in September.

How old does my child have to be in order to register for Kindergarten?

  • Your child can register for Kindergarten in the year that he or she turns 5 years of age.  The Ministry of Education only funds Kindergarten children who are 5 years of age by December 31st of that particular year.

How do I register my child for a cross-boundary school?

  • Students in the Vancouver School District are allowed to register at a school outside of their catchment area as a cross boundary applicant. Cross boundary applications will only be considered after all in-catchment students have been accommodated.  
  • You MUST register at your English Catchment School BEFORE submitting an online cross boundary application within the month of February.

If the requisite space and facilities are determined to be available, cross-boundary applications will be accepted in the following priority:

  • 1st: Non-catchment student with a sibling concurrently attending the same program – has a sibling that will be concurrently attending the same location, in the same program
  • 2nd: Non-catchment student (Daycare) - A student resident in the School District enrolled in child care within the catchment (applies to Kindergarten - Grade 7 only)
  • 3rd: Non-catchment student – A student that is a resident within the District
  • 4th: Non-District student – A British Columbian resident who does not reside in the Vancouver School District

For more information, please visit Cross boundary Registration or contact your catchment school principal.

How soon can I register my child for school?

  • There is no deadline to register for your neighbourhood school. However, you are encouraged to register early. Students who cannot be accommodated at their neighbourhood school will be placed on the school's waitlist. *Registration for the next school year begins on the first business day of November.

Why do I have to register my child at the Newcomer Welcome Center?

  • For those students born outside of Canada, we need to examine their immigration documents to make sure they are entitled to publicly funded education in Vancouver.

Can parents/legal guardians register by telephone, fax, or e-mail?

  • Please visit our registration site for more information. 
  • Documents that are written in a foreign language need to be translated into English.  Any missing documents delay the processing time for your file.

If my child is in an annex, do I need to register her or him for elementary school?  Do I need to register my child for the move from elementary to secondary school?

  • There is no need for a new registration in either of these cases.  Going to the next grade will be done automatically by the school administration.

If I register my child during July and August, will it take a long time?

  • Yes, it will. Summer is a busy time, as the Newcomer welcome Center is the only place open for registration for school. 


If you have additional questions, please send us a note at nwc@vsb.bc.ca or call the Newcomer Welcome Center at (604) 713-5999. It is possible to get information in various languages on the voicemail. Please listen carefully and follow instructions. Please speak slowly when leaving us your name, phone number, and short message. We will return your call as soon as possible.

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