What is residency? (Legal Reference: M.G.L. Chapter 76, Section 5)
All children of school age who actually reside in Wrentham are entitled to attend the Wrentham
Public Schools unless an exception applies. The residence of a minor child is ordinarily
presumed to be the legal residence of the child’s parent or legal guardian having physical
custody of the child. A student's actual residence is considered to be the place where he or
she lives permanently. In determining residence, Wrentham Public Schools (WPS) retains the
right to require the production of a variety of records and documentation and to investigate
where a student actually resides.
What documents are needed to verify residency for WPS?
Families registering for the WPS or submitting a change of address must demonstrate
Wrentham residency by submitting documents from an authorized list of acceptable proofs.
A photo ID is also required. In order to verify residency, WPS reserves the right to request
additional documents and /or conduct an investigation if needed. Because residency can
change for students and their families during the school year, WPS may verify residency at any
What if I don’t pay for utilities, or if no utility bills are in my name?
If you live in a household where all the utilities are listed in the name of your landlord or
someone else, this should be noted on your lease or the Landlord Affidavit must be
Is a cell phone bill an acceptable document?
No. Only a home telephone (“Landline”) bill satisfies this requirement.
Why is a water bill not accepted?
Landlords typically include water in their lease agreement. Therefore, someone paying a water
bill may or may not necessarily live in the property associated with the water bill.
What if I have recently moved and do not yet have two documents I can
To fulfill the requirements, you also may submit a work order or “statement of service” letter
from any utility company stating that your service has been ordered or installed. This document
must include the subscriber’s name, service address and a date of issuance.
What if I cannot produce both required proofs?
If your personal circumstances make it impossible for you to provide the required proofs of
residency, you will need to make an appointment with the Principal. You will be asked to bring
any copies of any proofs of residency you have and to describe the circumstances that prevent
you from having the required proofs. Staff will work with you, and if necessary, recommend a
letter of appeal to the Superintendent. All appeals will be decided by the Office of the
What if I live with a friend or relative in Wrentham?
(ie. parent, grandparent,
If you share housing with a friend or relative, and you cannot provide the required proofs of
residency, you will be asked to bring any proofs of residency you have, and to describe the
circumstances that prevent you from having the required proofs. The owner of the residence
will execute the Residing with Wrentham Resident Affidavit. Staff will work with you, and if
necessary, recommend a letter appeal to the Superintendent. All appeals will be decided by
the Office of the Superintendent.
What if my family doesn’t have a permanent residence?
The proof of residency policy does not apply to homeless students and families covered in the McKinney-Vento Act. Contact the school for assistance with registering your child, if you believe you qualify as homeless under the Act. If you are staying in the shelter, bring a letter from the shelter staff stating that you are living there.
How can I report a suspected violation of the residency policy?
Residency fraud is a violation of Massachusetts state law and is subject to per diem fines for every day that a student attends school outside the district s/he legally resides. Anonymous residency-related tips can be left on the voice mail service at the school number 508.384.5430 or reported to the building principal or director of student services. Both of these individuals will be responsible for reporting the alleged violation to the Superintendent.
Will documents that I submit to prove residency remain confidential?
All documents submitted to prove residency will be considered part of his or her confidential record. WPS will adhere to the standards of confidentiality set forth in state and federal laws in maintenance of these records.