Charging and Remissions

Overview

WE AIM
To promote and provide activities as part of a broad and balanced curriculum for the pupils of the school and as additional optional activities.
THE GOVERNING BODY
Recognises the valuable contribution that the wide range of additional activities, including clubs, visits and residential experiences can make towards pupils’ personal and social educations.
AIM
The aim of this policy is to set out what charges will be levied for school activities, external lettings and extended school provision, what remissions will be implemented and the circumstances under which voluntary contributions will be requested from parents. Guidance is based on the Education Act 1996: Sections 449-462.
RESPONSIBILITIES
The Governing Body of the School are responsible for determining the content of the policy and the head teacher for implementation. Any determinations with respect to individual parents will be considered jointly by the head teacher (and/or Governing Body).
DEFINITIONS
Community Facilities – activities which the governors do not feel is of direct educational benefit to children at the school
Extended school provision – provision of childcare outside the standard school day where it is optional as to whether the child attends
External Lettings – letting to an organisation other than the school
Remission – where a charge is not payable, either in full or in part
Sinking Fund – a reserve put aside over a number of years to pay for major maintenance or renewal costs

Prohibition of charges

The Governing Body of the School recognise that the legislation prohibits
charges for the following:

- education provided during school hours (including the supply of any materials, books, instruments or other equipment)
- education provided outside school hours if it is part of the National Curriculum, or part of a syllabus for a prescribed public examination that the pupil is being prepared for at the school
- tuition for pupils learning to play musical instruments if the tuition is required as an essential part of the National Curriculum, or part of a syllabus
- prescribed public examination syllabus being followed by the pupil, or the first access to the Key Stage 2 Instrumental and Vocal Tuition Programme (Wider Opportunities); entry for a prescribed public examination, if the pupil has been prepared for it at the school
- education provided on any trip that takes place during school hours;
- education provided on any trip that takes place outside school hours if it is part of the National Curriculum, or part of a syllabus for a prescribed public examination that the pupil is being prepared for at the school;
- supply teachers to cover for those teachers who are absent from school accompanying pupils on a residential trip;
- transporting registered pupils to or from the school premises, where the local education authority has a statutory obligation to provide transport;
- transporting registered pupils to other premises where the governing body or local education authority has arranged for pupils to be educated;
- transport that enables a pupil to meet an examination requirement when they have been prepared for that examination at the school;
- transport provided in connection with an educational trip

Charges

a) board and lodging on residential visits (not to exceed the costs)
b) the proportionate costs for an individual child of activities wholly or
mainly outside school hours (‘optional extras’) to meet the costs for:
(i) travel
(ii) materials and equipment
(iii) support staff costs
(iv) entrance fees
(v) insurance costs
c) individual or group tuition in the playing of a musical instrument with the exception of those pupils in receipt of free school meals and pupil premium
d) re-sits for public examinations where no further preparation has been provided by the school
e) costs of non-prescribed examinations where no further preparation has been provided by the school
f) any other education, transport or examination fee unless charges are specifically prohibited
g) breakages and replacements as a result of damages caused wilfully or negligently by pupils
h) extra-curricular activities and school clubs except where being funded by “Pupil Premium”
i) Letting of the school premises or grounds with the exception of charitable organisations
j) Extended school care activities such as breakfast club, before and after school club
k) Charges for materials or ingredients where the pupils wish to have the finished product

Music Lessons

A charge approved annually by the Finance Committee will be made for those receiving peripatetic music lessons and/or taking music exams (currently £63 per term).
This payment is requested in advance; no lessons are booked until this is received. Parents are encouraged to hire andthen purchase and insure musical instruments for their children.
Parents will be asked to purchase sheet music and replacement strings/reeds.

Parents or carers need to pay a one-off deposit to the school (currently £25) when a child starts peripatetic music lessons. This will be deducted from the final payment either when the child leaves the school or when
half a term’s written notice (to Mrs McBride) is received to discontinue lessons. If a child discontinues without the required notice, this deposit will be kept by the school.

Consideration also needs to be given

- the proportion of the costs recovered where a charge is to be made;
- whether any remission is to extend beyond the statutory minimum;
- whether or not special consideration is to be given to hardship cases not contained within the exemptions and how this is to be determined;
- arrangements for education where the parents fail to pay the charge being levied by the school;
- the level of support from the school budget where the level of voluntary contributions is insufficient to fund the visit or journey;
- any charge for a pupil activity should not exceed the actual cost. If further funds need to be raised to help in hardship cases, this must be voluntary for lettings, the charge should at least cover the cost, including:
(i) Services (heat & light)
(ii) Staffing (security,
(iii) caretaking & cleaning)
(iv) administration wear & tear (sinking fund

Remissions

- Charges will be waived or reduced for parents whose children entitled to receive Free School Meals. Parents are asked to let us know immediately if entitlement stops.
- Parents of students entitled to Pupil Premium will receive subsidised peripatetic music tuition. Parents will be requested to make a donation towards the cost of this tuition and to pay the usual refundable deposit.
- Charges for other activities may be waived or reduced in exceptional cases for other students, e.g. Pupil Premium, at the discretion of the Headteacher or Progress Manager.

Voluntary Contribution

Parents will be invited to make a voluntary contribution for the following:
a) Curriculum visits
b) Non Curriculum visits
c) Field Trips
d) Activity Week
e) External providers in school delivering workshops etc

The terms of any request made to parents will specify that the request for a voluntary contribution and in no way represents a charge. In addition the following will be made clear to parents:

a) that the contribution is genuinely voluntary and a parent is under no obligation to pay; and
b) that registered pupils at the school will not be treated differently according to whether or not their parents have made any contribution in response to the request.

The costs of any optional extra undertaken by any pupil whose parents/guardians are unable to pay may not be included in the charge to other pupils but must be funded through the delegated budget, school fund or other fundraising.
The responsibility for determining the level of voluntary contribution is delegated to the head teacher.
This policy will be monitored and reviewed annually by the Finance Committee of the School Governors.