Common Questions about the RHPS Residency Policy
How is Rocky Hill “residency” defined?
In order to attend Rocky Public Schools, a student must actually reside in the Town of Rocky Hill. A student's primary residence is the place where s/he dwells permanently, not temporarily, and is the place that is the center of his or her domestic, social, and civic life. Temporary residence in the Town of Rocky Hill, solely for the purpose of attending a Rocky Hill public school, shall not be considered permanent residency. The primary residence of a minor child is normally presumed to be the legal residence of the parent(s) or guardian(s) who have physical custody of the child. Any student 18 years or older may establish a residence apart from his or her parent(s) or guardian(s) for school attendance purposes but must still meet all residency requirements.
Why did the proof of residency procedures change for 2012-13?
As you are aware, the State of Connecticut has cut education funds to public schools. In order to ensure that RHPS resources are being utilized for students who reside in Rocky Hill, the District School Residency Coordinator has revised residency verification and centralized the registration process during the 2012-13 school year. While we understand this may appear to be an inconvenience for some families, this process is vital in helping to ensure that we serve students who reside in Rocky Hill. By establishing strong residency verification procedures, we will ensure that the students enrolled in our schools are true residents of Rocky Hill. Furthermore, strong residency verification procedures will also help ensure that our class sizes and programs are only impacted by Rocky Hill students and not non-resident students.
How does Rocky Hill Public schools verify Rocky Hill residency?
Parents/guardians or a student if 18 years or older, registering for school or changing addresses within the Town of Rocky Hill, are required to demonstrate residency in Rocky Hill. Residency is established by submitting a minimum of (2) two documents from an authorized list of acceptable proofs. To view the required residency proofs, please visit the Residency Requirement portion of this site. A photo ID is also required at the time of registration or change of address. In order to verify residency, RHPS reserves the right to request additional documents and/or to conduct an investigation. Because residency can change for students and their families during the school year, the RHPS Residency Coordinator may verify residency at any time.
Why must I bring a photo ID?
A photo ID is required for all registration and changes of address as proof that the person making the application matches documentation for parent/guardian status and is also the person whose name is associated with the residency proofs. Acceptable photo identification includes:
1. Valid Driver’s License
2. Valid Connecticut Non-Driver’s License ID Card
4. Military ID
5. Another current ID that includes both your photo and legal name approved by the Residency Coordinator
What if I don’t have the required proofs of residency with me when I register?
All new applicants are required to submit the required proofs of residency. Applicants who do not have the required documents will be asked to a make new appointment for when the applicant has the appropriate residency documents to complete the registration process.
Why must students attending out-of-town magnet schools register with Rocky Hill Public Schools?
Students that attend out-of-town magnet schools are required to be registered and meet residency requirements so that as a school district, we can assure Rocky Hill Residents that we are only paying tuition to the magnet schools for students that reside in the Town of Rocky Hill. For further information on residency, please visit the Residency Requirements portion of this site.
What is a Notarized Landlord Affidavit?
If you are a tenant at will (“month-to-month”), or your lease has expired or do not have a written lease in place, there is a Rocky Hill Public Schools Form that your landlord can complete and have his/her signature notarized. Called the Notarized Landlord Affidavit, this form is available by contacting the School Residency Coordinator at (860) 258-7701 Ext. 31177 or by email. This document will fulfill Category A of the residency requirements. For further information on residency, please visit the Residency Requirements portion of this site.
What if I own my home and want to submit a copy of the deed as proof of residency in Category A but don’t have a copy?
Contact the financial institution that handled your mortgage or the Rocky Hill Tax Assessors Office at (860) 258-2722 or visit their website here.
What if I do not pay for utilities or if none of the utility bills are in my name?
If you live in a household where all utilities are in someone else’s name, please choose (2) two of the acceptable proofs from the list in Category C. For further information on residency, please visit the Residency Requirements portion of this site. The RHPS School Residency Coordinator may still require the submission of a utility bill to prove that the residence is occupied.
What if I have recently moved and do not yet have a utility bill?
To fulfill the Category B requirement, you may submit a work order from any utility company stating that your service has been ordered or installed. Most utility companies will provide the service customer with a “Service Verification Letter” by calling their customer service hotline. Letters may be faxed directly to the RHPS Residency Coordinator at (860) 258–7710 Ext. 31177. Please verify if fax was received before arriving for your appointment.
Is a cell phone bill an acceptable document?
No. Only a home telephone (“land-line”) bill satisfies this requirement.
What if I am over 18 and no longer live with my parents?
Any person eighteen (18) years of age or older may establish a residence separate and apart from his or her parents or guardians for school attendance purposes. However, the student will still be required to submit the required proofs of residency bearing their name and address. For further information on residency, please visit the Residency Requirements portion of this site.
What if I reside with a friend or relative?
If you voluntarily share the housing with a friend or relative that permanently resides in Rocky Hill, a Residency Affidavit is required. Ask the person you are living with (called the Host hereafter) to complete the Residency Affidavit and have his/her signature notarized to affirm your residence. To download or view the Residency Affidavit, please see the Other Forms folder for the Residency Affidavit. Please note, under these residency circumstances, both the host and the parent/guardian are required to prove residency in Rocky Hill as described in the Residency Affidavit.
If you are temporarily “doubled up” with a friend or relative due to economic hardship, loss of housing, or a similar reason, you may qualify as homeless under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Act. For questions, please contact the RHPS School Residency Coordinator at (860) 258-7701 Ext. 31177.
What if just the student resides with a friend or relative?
The primary residence of a minor child (under the age of 18) is presumed to be the legal residence of the student’s parent(s) or guardian(s) who have physical custody of the child. Sometimes family situations lead to the student living elsewhere. In order to attend Rocky Public Schools, a student must reside in the Town of Rocky Hill “permanently.” Permanently is defined as a student's primary residence and is the place where s/he dwells (7) seven days per week, including weekends, holidays and school vacations. In addition, the Rocky Hill residence is the center of the student’s domestic, social, and civic life and is the location of all of his/her personal effects.
What documents are required if a student “permanently” lives with a friend or relative?
The Notarized Parent/Guardian Affidavit is required in this type of student living arrangement. For further information on the Notarized Parent/Guardian Affidavit, please see the Other Forms folder for the Residency Affidavit..
During registration, the Rocky Hill Resident that the student permanently lives with, called the “Host,” is required to provide the requisite proof of residency in Rocky Hill. For further information on residency, please visit the Residency Requirements portion of this site.
What if my family is homeless?
Whenever feasible, RHPS will minimize the effects of mobility on homeless students by maintaining a stable educational environment. If you are temporarily “doubled up” with a friend or relative due to economic hardship, loss of housing, or a similar reason, your student may qualify as homeless under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Act. Please contact the RHPS Homeless Liaison or School Residency Coordinator at (860) 258-7701 ext. 31177 for questions or for assistance in registering your child under these circumstances.
What if my family is undocumented immigrants?
Any child whose family lives in Rocky Hill is guaranteed access to a free public education. Denying enrollment to children who are not legally admitted into the United States violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. No family will be denied access to school because of immigration status, see Plyler v. Doe, 457 U.S. 202 (1982). Depending on their housing situation, undocumented residents may be required to submit proof of residency in Rocky Hill. For questions, please contact the School Residency Coordinator at (860) 258-7701 Ext. 31177.
Will documents that I submit to prove residency remain confidential?
All documents submitted to prove residency will be considered part of the student’s confidential record. RHPS will adhere to the standards of confidentiality set forth in state and federal laws in maintenance of these records.
How can I report a suspected violation of the residency policy?
Rocky Hill residents, staff, students and others can report possible residency violations by calling the RHPS School Residency Coordinator anonymously at (860) 258-7701 Ext. 31177.
What are the consequences of residency fraud?
Should any student be discovered to be attending Rocky Hill Public Schools illegally, the student will be immediately withdrawn from school with the right of appeal. In addition, the Town of Rocky Hill reserves the right to recover the cost of educational services received as a non-resident from the host(s), parent(s), guardian(s) or student if eighteen years (18) or older.
What is the process for appealing residency decisions?
To appeal a decision, you may request, in writing, a hearing before the Rocky Hill Board of Education. A hearing before the Board, or a subcommittee thereof, will be scheduled within ten (10) days of the receipt of the written request. The written request for a hearing should be addressed to Dr. Mark Zito, Rocky Hill Superintendent of Schools, 761 Old Main Street, Rm. 231, Rocky Hill, CT 06067. A student may remain in school until the appeal process is completed.
Who possesses the burden of proving residency for school accommodations?
Pursuant to Section C.G.S. 10-186 (b) (1), the party claiming eligibility for school accommodations shall have the burden of proving such eligibility by a preponderance of the evidence. Typically, the burden is on the parent or guardian.