Thornham St. James’ C.E. (controlled) Primary School
Charging and Remissions Policy
This policy has been formulated in accordance with the Authority’s guidance on: Charging for School Activities.
The aim of this policy is to set out what charges will be levied for activities, what remissions will be implemented and the circumstances under which voluntary contributions will be requested from parents.
The governing Body of the School, in consultation with the Head, are responsible for determining the content of the policy and its implementation. Any determinations with respect to individual parents will be considered jointly by the Headteacher and Governing Body.
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, or part of religious education;
- Tuition for pupils learning to play musical instruments if the tuition is required as 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 religious education;
- Entry for a prescribed public examination, if the pupil has been prepared for it at the school;
- Examination re-sit(s) if the pupil is being prepared for the re-sit(s) 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, or part of religious education;
- 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 LA has a statutory obligation to provide transport;
- Transporting registered pupils to other premises where the governing body or LA has arranged for pupils to be educated;
- Transport that enables a pupil to meet an examination requirement when he has been prepared for that examination at the school;
- Transport provided in connection with an education trip.
Publication of Information
A summary of this policy will be included in the School Prospectus which will specify what charges are/are not to be made and for which activities voluntary contributions will be invited from parents.
The Governing Body of the school reserves the right to make a charge for the following activities:
a) Board and lodgings 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 cost for:
ii. Materials and equipment
iii. Non-teaching staff cost
iv. Entrance fees
v. Insurance costs
c) Individual tuition in the playing of a musical instrument
d) Any other education, transport or examination fee unless charges are specifically prohibited
e) Breakages and replacements as a result of damages caused wilfully or negligently by pupils
f) Extra-curricular activities which are provided by external coaches
Musical Instrument Tuition
All children study music in school as part of the normal school curriculum. There is no charge for this. However, charges are made for teaching either an individual pupil, or pupils in a group of up to four, to play a musical instrument. This tuition is provided within school hours by members of Oldham Music Service and the amount required is adjusted annually in line with actual costs. Parents must agree to the music charges and sign a tuition agreement which commits them to pay the music fees for a full academic year, before tuition commences.
Parents who have made a voluntary contribution for an activity may have a refund if their child is unable to take part in a trip through illness.
Charges for additional optional activities will apply to all children as school is unable to subsidise optional activities. However children whose parents are in receipt of Income support will, in addition to have a free school lunch entitlement, also be entitled to the remission of charges for board and lodging costs during residential school trips.
Although we do not charge for most of our school time activities, parents will be invited to make a voluntary contribution to all school trips, plus some activities in school that are not part of the national curriculum and would not be able to take place without some help from parents. Examples of activities which require voluntary contributions from parents:
- School trips
- Musical events
- Visiting theatre companies or visitors
- Residential visits
The contributions go towards travel costs, entrance fees, extra materials required, board and lodgings.
The terms of any request made to parents will specify that the request for a voluntary contribution in no way represents a charge, in addition the following will be made clear to parents:
a) The contribution is genuinely voluntary and a parent is under no obligation to pay
b) Registered pupils at the school will not be treated differently according to whether or not their parents have made a contribution in response to the request.
c) No pupil will be left out of an activity because his/her parents cannot or will not make a contribution of any kind.
If, however, insufficient voluntary contributions are received, then a visit or activity will have to be cancelled. The responsibility for determining the level of voluntary contribution is delegated to the Headteacher. If parents are experiencing any financial difficulty they are invited to contact the Headteacher in confidence.