Resources for Dependents

UF Scripps campus pond

It is important to us at The Wertheim UF Scripps Institute that both you and your family members feel welcomed and informed prior to your arrival to the United States. The International Services Office has curated a number of helpful resources for you and your family to aid in the transition. We welcome any questions you may have prior to, or after, your arrival.


For assistance with family visa questions, contact Mary Schrot in the The Wertheim UF Scripps Institute International Services Office (ISO) at (561) 228-2025 or .

Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 may apply for a dependent visa stamp to accompany you to the United States. Dependents in the United States may attend school but may not work. There is an exception for people holding the J-2 dependent status. J-2 spouses and J-2 dependent children ages 14 to 21 may apply for work permission. However, it may take three to five months to receive a work permit. 


Education is mandatory in the United States from ages 5 to 16. Parents may choose to enroll their children in education in private, fee-based schools; public (free) schools, or they may homeschool their children. In general, the school system is organized in the following age groups:

  • Early childhood – Under the age of 5
  • Primary/Elementary – Kindergarten to 5th grade (age 5 to 10)
  • Middle/Junior High – 6th grade to 8th grade (age 11 to 13)
  • Secondary/High – 9th grade to 12th grade (age 13 to 17/18)
  • Postsecondary Education – age 17/18 and beyond

You can find information on the enrollment process and requirements on your school district’s website. To enroll your child in school, it is likely you will need the following documents:

  • Proof of Florida residency
  • Proof of immunization (in English), provided by your child’s physician
  • Child’s birth certificate
  • If applicable, prior school records

In Florida, children of international employees and visitors are eligible to enroll in public school in their city of residence. The school that your child will be able to attend is determined by your residential address. You must have a residential address before you will be allowed to enroll your child in public school. Jupiter, FL, is a fairly small town, its schools are part of the county’s school system, which is the School District of Palm Beach County.  Review their website for information on enrolling your child in public school.

Homeschooling is also an option in Florida. More information is available at the Florida Department of Education website.


For international employees and visitors who come to the United States. with very young children, or who plan to have children while here, understanding our child care or “day care” system (and the expenses involved) is a very important step in planning your stay and your budget. Early childhood education is not mandatory in the United States for children under the age of 5 but it can be beneficial, both for preparing young children for transition to kindergarten and for having a place for children to be outside the home during the day.

The Wertheim UF Scripps Institute does not endorse or review any of the child care options below. This list is for general information and is not an endorsement or recommendation for any particular business or agency.