IMPORTANT NOTICE: In the US, schools and school districts are determined by state and county. If you live in DC, your school district and choice of schools will be different from those who live in Virginia or Maryland, and vice versa.

This page only covers information on Virginia schools in Arlington County, where the majority of our students are housed each year. If you are bringing school-aged dependents and will live outside of Virginia or Arlington County during your time at NDU, ISMO staff will be happy to provide information or contacts specific to your county.


If you opt-in to the housing referral program, your lodging will be in Arlington County, Virginia. In the U.S., public schools are run by the county that you live in, so your child will attend Arlington County Public Schools.   

  • Arlington County schools saves a complete school calendar here:
  • Your child must be your natural child or your legally adopted child (proof of adoption required).  Nieces, nephews and other extended family cannot be enrolled. 
  • NDU international students and their dependents are not eligible for free or reduced lunch programs offered by Arlington County.
  • Arlington Public Schools provide transportation to and from school for enrolled students living beyond a one-mile walking distance from elementary schools. Transportation is provided to and from school beyond a one and one-half mile walking distance from middle and high schools.
  • Questions can be directed to: or by calling +1 703-228-8000 (select registration option for information and appointments)


Students must be of age to attend school.

  • Registration for Kindergarten to 12th grade is available for children who are between ages 5 and 18 on Sept. 30 of the current school year.
  • Students with an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) and English Learners may be eligible for school until age 22.
  • Limited services are available for students over 18. Contact the Welcome Center at 703-228-8000 or for more information. 


  • Children who turn five years old on or by September 30th of the current school year may enter kindergarten.
  • Kindergarten is recommended, but not required by law.
  • Families that choose not to enroll their student in Kindergarten must inform the Office of Elementary Education and Early Childhood Pre-K Programs in writing (Send correspondence to: 2110 Washington Blvd., Arlington, VA 22204 or
  • Virginia Law requires all children who will turn six years old by Sept. 30 to enroll in school.

Students will receive grade placement recommendations based on: 

  • Educational records as they compare to the US school system (ex. United Kingdom year 6 = grade 5 in the USA) 
  • ​Age of student by September 30, 2023 (refer to above) 
  • English proficiency level (listening, speaking, reading, writing) 
  • Transcript evaluation 
  • Student’s best interest 

Final recommendation for grade placement is made at the ​school by the principal or principal designee. ​ 


In Virginia, public school is not available until the age of 5 if the student’s birthday is on or by September 30th of the year they are enrolling. Children younger than 5 who do not meet the September 30th cut-off date will have to enroll in a private pre-school program. The following link offers information on finding a licensed childcare provider:  

Please note that although Arlington Public Schools do offer some preschool options such as Montessori and the Community Peer Program, seats are limited, and parents MUST pay tuition. For Montessori information visit: 

For Community Peer Program (CPP) information visit: 


K-12 schooling covers all grades from kindergarten to 12th grade. Families will register at the Language Services Registration Center (LSRC). Registration can be done in person (call 703-228-7663 to schedule an appointment) or online by visiting: 

During the in-person Registration Appointment: 

  • Parent provides required registration documents and completes registration forms (just one parent needs to come to the registration appointment). 
  • ​Parent schedules an English Proficiency Assessment appointment for the student(s) 
  • Note that English language assessment and registration interviews can be scheduled for the same day, and please ask for this accommodation when scheduling.

Online registration: 

  • Parent uploads all required registration documents to the online secure site:  
  • A registrar will contact the parent for a virtual meeting to review documents and complete the registration process. 
  • ​Parent schedules an in-person assessment appointment for the student (s). The English Proficiency Assessment MUST be done in-person. 


The list of required registration documents can be found here.

  • Proof of Residency in Arlington County – A Signed Lease Agreement (we understand NDU families might not have the two additional proof of residency supporting documents)  
  • ​We must have proof of residency for registration so we cannot enroll students until the families have a signed lease. 
  • Original Birth Certificate or Passport & Identity Affidavit Name of the parent registering the child must be on the birth certificate. Birth certificate must be translated into English. 
  • ​Parent or guardian’s government issued photo identification 
  • Please bring ALL academic school records and report cards for children of all grade levels. 
  • ​Bring all records of medical conditions, disabilities, mental health conditions or any other special needs. 

Please find all requirements and forms here: 

Student Registration Form: 


STUDENTS WHO HAVE ALREADY GRADUATED in another country CANNOT enroll in Public School in Virginia.  

DO NOT plan on your high school student being eligible to graduate from High School in Virginia. Please note that it is extremely rare for a student transferring from overseas or from another State in the U.S. to be placed in the 12th grade. Students entering grade 12 must be able to graduate by the end of the year; therefore, they must meet all the graduation requirements for the State of Virginia; which is almost impossible if the student has not been attending a Virginia school or if he/she is not academically proficient in English. If students attending school as seniors (12th graders) and do not graduate, they become a “drop-out” student. Being a drop-out does not benefit the student and the school system does not want to have drop-out students.  


Language Services Registration Center (LSRC) staff needs to evaluate the student's foreign transcripts before any final grade placement decision is made. Please understand that every course on a report card from another school system does NOT equate to a high school course in the state of Virginia.  

Please see here for the High School program of studies, graduation requirements for the State of Virginia (pgs. 5-14).

  • Original transcripts are required for all high school students.  
  • ALL transcripts must be officially translated (not by the parent). Translations by your Embassy are acceptable.  
  • ​Electronic transcripts are accepted if sent directly to Arlington Public Schools from your child’s school. Electronic transcripts must be in English. Please send them to: Juana Luna 
  • Bring all records of Advanced Placement exams or IB program certificates. 

To have foreign transcripts evaluated for 9th-11th grade students:  

  1. You must schedule a transcript evaluation meeting by calling the LSRC office at 703-228-7663.  
  2. The student and a parent/legal guardian need to attend the transcript evaluation meeting. 
  3. A Schedule of Seat Hours for Foreign Transcript Evaluation form must be completed for each grade level. 


Students must meet Virginia Health requirements for school admission. 

  • Immunizations are required for all students to attend school.
    If your child needs immunizations, you can call 703-228-1200 and make an appointment for your student to receive needed immunizations. I believe students can also receive a COVID vaccine here if they have not received one yet. 
  • Tuberculosis Test Result is required for all students to attend school.
    DO NOT have your children tested for Tuberculosis (TB) before arrival to the US. We will only accept TB skin tests administered in the U.S. or a U.S. military facility or the U.S. Embassy 
  • Physical Examination is required for students entering pre-school through 5th grade.
    A physical exam (completed no earlier than one year prior to school entry) is required for all new students. The School Health Entrance Form is here:  


Please note that Arlington Public Schools ends about a week later than NDU. Last day of school: 

  • High School June 12, 2024 
  • Middle School June 14, 2024
  • ​Elementary School June 14, 2024

In order to take your child(ren) out of school early, please: 

  • Complete the Student Withdrawal Notification form 
  • Note that complete records cannot be provided early. Families leaving before the end of the school year will not receive student records until later. 
  • ​If students leave before the end-of-year testing or before the end of the quarter, they might not be able to receive final grades/credits. 


Dependent children aged 21 to 23 must be enrolled full time in an institute of higher learning to be listed as authorized dependents on your ITO. Your dependent does not have to attend a US institution (can attend any college virtually), but proof of enrollment must be provided for the current academic year.  

Families of dependents 21 or older are recommended to look into attending community college during their time in the United States. Community college in the United States is a postsecondary educational institution. You will be living in Arlington, VA during your year here. Many of our officers have their college-aged children attend Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC), which would be metro accessible from your apartment and a much more affordable option than universities in the area, such as George Mason University, George Washington University, Georgetown, or American University. You can go to this website for more information about NVCC: 


High school sports start in early August.

  • Your child must be registered for school in order to participate in “try-outs”. Try-outs determine whether he/she will be selected for the school’s team.
  • A high school sports exam is required. The exam form is located here: Athletics - Arlington Public Schools (
  • ​If you can provide proof of physical within one year of 1-Aug-22, then the school can accept that if it is signed and dated.

As always, do not hesitate to contact ISMO if you have any questions regarding the above information. If your housing is outside Arlington, we can help you find schooling information pertaining to your county.