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ELL/ESD School registration information for parents of students who are not born in Canada or do not speak proficient English for their age (English Language Learners).

Who should register with the English Language (ELL) Coordinator at the Chilliwack School Board Office?

  • All students NOT BORN in Canada.
  • Kindergarten to Grade 12 students born in Canada who DO NOT speak English as their home language

Why do I have to register my child at the Chilliwack District Board Office and not our neighbourhood school?

For those students born outside of Canada, we need to examine their immigration documents to make sure they are entitled to attend school in Chilliwack. For those born outside of Chilliwack, but elsewhere in Canada, we review their birth certificates, proof of address and other documents.

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

The District ELL Coordinator at the School Board Office does not accept applications by telephone, fax or e-mail as staff needs to verify authenticity of documentation. Documents that are written in a foreign language need to be translated into English. Any missing documents delay the processing time for your file.

What happens if my child has little or no English?

Your child's English language skills will be assessed at the School Board Office or at school. Extra language support will be provided, if necessary, by a qualified language specialist.

Do all elementary schools have an ELL program?

All elementary schools have access to a teacher who offers ELL support services. Exactly how that will look varies from school to school. Your child's new school would be happy to explain their support program to you.

How do you determine what grade my child will go into?

Students are placed in the grade that matches their age. This can change only after the teacher has a chance to observe your child over a period of time and after discussion between the teacher, parent and school principal.

What school would my child attend?

Your child can attend the neighborhood school if you live within that school's boundary and there is space and a program available. Your child could also attend a cross-boundary school.

What does Proof of Residency mean?

If you are renting an apartment, you can bring your Residential Tenancy Agreement. If you are renting a house, you must bring your rental contract and a copy of the most recent property tax document from the home owner.
If you own your house or apartment, the ownership documents will be sufficient.
If you live with a relative or a friend, we will give you additional documents that need to be completed.

Do we need all documents to be translated into English?

All documents must be translated into English before registering. Translations must be certified by a professional translator.

My parent does not live in B.C. Do I have to pay tuition fees if I want to go to school in Chilliwack?

According to the Education Act, only children with a parent living in B.C. can attend school without paying fees. If you do not have one parent living with you full time, even if you are a Canadian citizen or landed immigrant, please register at the International Education office at the Chilliwack School Board. You will be required to pay tuition fees. Chilliwack School District does not allow children to register who will not have a parent or LEGAL GUARDIAN living with them in Chilliwack. In some cases, adults registering children are asked to prove that a parent works or lives in Chilliwack and/or provide full legal proof (documents must be result of law court process)  that the adult registering the child is a Legal Guardian (letters of permission will not be accepted also notarized custody documents will not be accepted.)

I have a Study Permit to study in Canada. Can my child attend school in B.C. without paying tuition fees?

For your child to go to school without paying tuition:

the child's parent/guardian's study permit must be for at least 1 year, AND
the child's parent/guardian must be studying in a publicly funded institution, AND
the child's parent/guardian must be studying in a full-time program leading to a diploma or degree.

** Adult ELL Programs of study do not qualify.

If I have a Work Permit to work in Canada, can my child go to school without paying tuition fees? Do I need to apply for a study permit for my child?

For your child to go to school without paying tuition:

The child’s parent/legal guardian must have a valid work permit issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that is valid for a term of one year or more, AND
the name of the employer where the parent/legal guardian will be working must be stated on the permit, AND
the child’s parent/legal guardian must be residing in British Columbia, and provide proof they are living and working in Chilliwack.

Your child does not need his or her own study permit.

If I have adopted a child, have no birth certificate and the adoption papers contained sensitive information, what document(s) can I provide?

There are several answers to this question. We can copy only the portion of the adoption paper identifying you as the adoptive parent(s), or we can copy a Canadian passport or proof of Canadian citizenship.

Can I register my child if I don't have all the documents?

You can open a file for registration but the ELL Coordinator will keep your child's file until they have seen all of the required documents. The registration is not complete and your child will not be able to attend school until all relevant documents have been submitted.

If you have any further questions please contact the School District Office: