By Terry Dean
Officials at Oak Park and River Forest High School this month are expected to review the school's revamped residency verification process that went into effect in spring 2013.
Under the pilot program every OPRF parent or guardian was required to bring documents to the school during a four-day verification period which offered proof that they lived in the school district.
In all, roughly 2,000 parents went through last year's registration process. Currently, about 3,200 students are enrolled at OPRF, some in families with multiple students enrolled. In previous years, OPRF checked addresses and leases throughout the school year, which school officials said was cumbersome and time-consuming for staff.
School officials deemed the pilot program a success, with the vast majority of OPRF parents participating last April.
According to OPRF spokesperson Karin Sullivan, roughly 300 students' schedules were pulled during last year's verification process after parents failed to prove residency. Parents are required to provide such documents as leases or utility bills as proof of where they live. Any parent who did not go through last April's verification period could schedule a time to come in later with their documentation.
Of those 300 cases initially flagged, about 180 were later reinstated after parents provided proof of residency, Sullivan said. The remaining cases are considered "inactive," Sullivan said.
"Sixty-four of those 113 were incoming freshman, so it is not truly known whether they ever planned on attending. They completed the online enrollment process, but may have either never intended to go to OPRF or later decided to attend another school, such as Fenwick or Trinity. The other students were sophomores, juniors, and seniors," Sullivan said.
OPRF administrators and the school board plans to review the pilot program this month, Sullivan said.
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