Keicher bill signed into law: removes hurdle on school enrollment for military dependents

Governor JB Pritzker signed House Bill 557 into law on Friday, legislation introduced and sponsored by State Rep. Jeff Keicher, R-Sycamore, which allows students who are a dependent of active duty military personnel to enroll in school sooner than current law allows when the family relocates per military orders.

The new law requires school districts to allow a dependent of U.S. military personnel to enroll free of tuition if, at the time of enrollment, the child is in temporary housing outside of the school district but will be living within the district within 6 months. 

Military dependents will now be able to enroll in school districts early if their parent or legal guardian is transferring to a new area per military orders. As often as some high school juniors and seniors have to move to a new high school, they may not be able to get access to classes they need to graduate on time if those are full; and stay on track for college. Rep. Keicher introduced the bill because he believes these students should be able to enroll earlier to ensure they can take needed courses in a timely manner.

“We’ve seen too many military dependents not be able to graduate with requirements on time because they couldn’t register early enough for required classes in a new school when the family is transferred to a new duty station,” Rep. Keicher said. “With the signing of our new law, we’ve removed this obstacle for students who have a parent or guardian serving our country.”

For questions or more information, please contact Rep. Keicher’s office at (815) 748-3494.