Arlington Heights District 25 moving residency checks online
Arlington Heights Elementary District 25 has begun using an online system to verify student residency -- a process officials believe will eliminate the need for most families to bring paper records to school offices.
Now, parents are required to every year bring three documents to each school their children attend to demonstrate proof of residency.
Starting with registration that began Tuesday for the 2018-19 school year, returning families will need only to enter their name and address in an online system. Thomson Reuters CLEAR, the third-party vendor District 25 is contracting with, will cross-check that information with electronic databases, credit reports, and utility and property records.
"One of our biggest motivations behind this was to remove the burden for families," said Aimee LeBlanc, the district's assistant superintendent for student services. "We realize not every family can come in between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., and to get those documents can be difficult."
LeBlanc said the new system also will help reduce the hours spent by the staff on the current manual process. She said it takes school administrative assistants about 15 minutes per student to review documents, determine their accuracy, make copies and file them away.
District officials tested the system at one school over spring break and decided it would be good to use for all school residency verifications this summer.
LeBlanc anticipates the electronic system will be able to verify residency for most families; if not, parents will be contacted to submit additional paperwork.
The new online process doesn't affect new families to District 25. They must still submit paper documents in person, although LeBlanc said they would have to provide the paperwork at only one school building.
The district is aiming to have new families on the online system for the 2019-20 school year, she said.
The same system is used by Chicago Public Schools, Park Ridge-Niles Elementary District 64 and Indian Prairie Unit District 204 in Aurora. It will cost District 25 about $5,400 annually.