The purpose of the policy is to ensure that there is clarity over those items, which the school will provide free of charge and for those items where there may be a charge. The policy has been informed by the LA policy and the DfE guidance.
The school day is defined as: 08:55 to 15:25 excluding the midday break, which does not form part of the school day.
The Headteacher will ensure that staff are familiar with and correctly apply the policy. The Governors will review the policy annually.
During the school day all activities that are a necessary part of the National Curriculum plus religious education will be provided free of charge. This includes any materials, equipment and transport to take pupils between the school and the activity. It excludes charges made for teaching an individual pupil or groups of up to four pupils to play a musical instrument. Unless the teaching is an essential part of either the National Curriculum or a public examination syllabus being followed by the pupil(s), we will make a charge.
There will be no charge for any activity that is an essential part of the syllabus for an approved examination unless:
the examination is on the set list, but the pupil was not prepared for it at this school;
the examination is not on the set list but we arrange for the pupil to take it;
a pupil fails without good reason to complete the requirements of any public examination where the governing body or the LA originally paid or agreed to pay the entry fee.
Voluntary contributions may be sought for activities during the school day, which entail additional costs, for example field trips. In these circumstances no pupil will be prevented from participating because his/her parents/carers cannot or will not make a contribution; however If insufficient funds are available it maybe necessary to curtail or cancel activities.
From time to time we may invite a non-school based organisation such as a visiting drama group to arrange an activity during the school day. Such organisations may wish to charge parents/carers, who may, if they wish, ask the Headteacher to agree to their child being absent for that period.
Optional Activities Outside of the School Day
We may charge for optional, extra activities provided outside of the school day, for example a sports club or theatre visit. Such activities are not part of the National Curriculum or religious education nor are they part of an examination syllabus. Where we wish to charge we will tell parents/carers in advance. Where specific funding has been received to support particular activities we will subsidise the charge to the extent permitted by the funding.
Education Partly During the School Day
If a non-residential activity happens partly inside the school day and partly outside of it, there will be no charge if most of the time to be spent on the activity falls within the school day. Conversely, if the bigger proportion of time spent falls outside of the normal school day, charges will be made. When such activities are arranged parents/carers will be told how the charges were calculated.
Charges will be made for board and lodging, except for pupils whose parents/carers are in receipt of eligible benefits.
Other charges will be made to cover costs when the number of school sessions missed by the pupils totals half or more of the number of half-days taken up by the activity. In such cases parents/cares will be told how the charges were calculated.
Travel in the school mini-bus is free.
When charges are made for any activity, whether during or outside of the school day, they will be based on the actual costs incurred, divided by the total number of pupils participating. There will be no levy on those who can pay to support those who can't or won’t. Parents/carers who would qualify for support are those who are in receipt of eligible benefits.
The principles of best value will be applied when planning activities that incur costs to the school and/or charges to parents/carers.
In cases of hardship the Governors will consider in their absolute discretion the remission of fees (either in full or in part) for those pupils who they consider will benefit from such tuition.
If a student fails without good reason to complete the examination board requirements for any public examination for which the entry fee has been or has to be paid, the fee will be recovered from the parent/carer. In such cases, failure to complete the coursework requirements will be treated in the same way as failure to sit the final examination.
The Headteacher will decide what constitutes a good reason, in consultation with the Governors, taking into account any unavoidable circumstances that may have existed.
Students will be entered for public examinations where the College has evidence that performance is likely to be rewarded with a certificate. Where a parent/carer insists, against the advice of the Headteacher, that a student be entered for an examination, this will be deemed to be a private entry and a charge will be made to cover the entry fee.
Cost of Materials
Charges will be made for the cost of materials used in practical lessons where parents/carers have indicated in advance that they wish to own the finished product. Income received from such sources will be used solely for the purchase of similar articles or raw materials.
Parents/carers may be invited to provide materials in lieu of payment where they have indicated that they wish to own the finished product, or, conversely, to make a payment rather than supply requested materials.
Parents/carers will be expected to contribute towards the cost of damage which results from the behaviour of their son or daughter.
Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance;
Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999; or
Child Tax Credit (providing that they do not also receive Working Tax Credit and have an annual income, assessed by The Inland Revenue that does not exceed £13,230).