The Governors of Beulah Junior School believes that all our pupils should have an equal opportunity to benefit from school activities and visits (curricular and extra curricular) independent of their parents’ financial means.
This charging policy describes how we will do our best to ensure a good range of visits and activities is offered and, at the same time, try to minimise the financial barriers which may prevent some pupils taking full advantage of the opportunities.
Separately from the matter of charging, schools may seek voluntary contributions in order to offer a wide variety of experiences to pupils. All requests for voluntary contributions will emphasise their voluntary nature and the fact that pupils of parents who do not make such contributions will be treated no differently from those who have. If a parent is unwilling or unable to pay their child will be given an equal chance to go on the visit.
However, the following conditions apply:
- If the activity cannot be funded without voluntary contributions, parents will be notified of this from the outset.
- If insufficient contributions are raised, the trip or activity may have to be cancelled.
No charges will be made for:
- Education provided during school hours (including the supply of any materials, books, instruments or other equipment unless the parent/carer has expressly stated a desire to own the finished product).
- 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, or part of the school’s basic curriculum for religious education.
- 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, or
part of the school’s basic curriculum for religious education.
- Supply teachers to cover for those teachers who are absent from school accompanying pupils on a residential trip.
- Transport provided in connection with an educational trip.
Activities for which charges may legally be made:
Activities outside school hours
Non-residential activities (other than those listed above) which take place outside school hours but only if the majority of the time spent on that activity takes place outside school hours (time spent on travel counts in this calculation if the travel itself occurs during school hours).
Board, travel and lodging costs of residential trips deemed to take place during school time. However pupils whose parents are in receipt of certain benefits may not be charged for board and lodging costs. Any such concessions or reductions are solely at the discretion of the Headteacher. Residential trips deemed to take place outside school time (other than for those activities listed above).
Music tuition for individuals or groups of up to 4 pupils
Loss and Damage to School Property
Parents/carers of any pupil who damages or loses any item of school property or equipment, including, for example, windows or computer software, may be liable for the costs of repair or replacement, at the discretion of the Headteacher, in consultation with the Chair of Governors.
It is the policy of Beulah Junior School that charges will (or may) be made as indicated below. Parental agreement will be obtained before a charge is made.
- Activities which can be charged for (with the exception of board and lodging for residential trips) are regarded as ‘optional extras’. Charges will not exceed the actual cost (per pupil) of provision
- Charges will/may be made for any materials, books, instruments, or equipment, where a parent wishes their child to own them; e.g. A clay model – a charge to cover the cost of the clay.
- Charges will/may be made for music tuition
- The cost, or a proportion of the costs, for teaching staff employed to provide tuition in playing a musical instrument or singing, where the tuition is an optional extra for an individual pupil or groups of up to four pupils.
- Charges will be made for the board and lodging component of residential trips. The charge will not exceed the actual cost.
- Loss and Damage to School Property
In order to remove financial barriers from disadvantaged pupils, the governing body has agreed that some activities and visits where charges can legally be made may be offered at no charge or a reduced charge to parents in particular circumstances. This will be at the discretion of the Headteacher and can be reviewed at any time by the governing body.
The governing body recognises its responsibility to ensure that the offer of activities and educational visits does not place an unnecessary burden on family finances. To this end we will try to adhere to the following guidelines:
- We have established a system for parents to pay in instalments
- When an opportunity for a trip arises at short notice it will be possible to arrange to pay by instalments beyond the date of the trip
- We acknowledge that offering opportunities on a ‘first pay, first served’ basis discriminates against pupils from families on lower incomes and we will avoid this wherever possible.