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Charging and Remissions Policy

Date by which the school adopted the policy: September 2014

Anticipated review date: September 2015

Signed by Chair of Governors:Charging and Remissions Policy


Purpose

The purpose of the policy is to ensure that, during the school day, all children have full and free access to a broad and balanced curriculum.

The school day is defined as: 9am to 3:15pm.


What was consulted?

The policy has been informed by the Department for Education’s guidelines in the ‘Charging for School Activites’ advice for governing bodies, school leaders, school staff, and local authorities November 2013.


https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/278060/charging_for_school_activities.pdf


Relationship to other school policies

The policy complements the school’s equal opportunities policy, curriculum policy, educational visits policy and the teaching and learning policy.


Roles and responsibilities of the Headteacher, other staff, governors

The Headteacher will ensure that the following applies:


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.


Voluntary Contributions

The staff and governors recognise the importance of activities that, while not an essential part of the curriculum, add value and enjoyment to the experiences of the children.  Voluntary contributions may be sought for such activities during the school day which entail additional costs.


If we do not receive sufficient voluntary contributions, we may have to cancel a trip. If a trip goes ahead, it may include children whose parents have not paid any contribution. We do not treat these children differently from any others.


If a parent wishes their child to take part in a school trip or event, but is unwilling or unable to make a voluntary contribution, we do allow the child to participate fully in the trip or activity.


The following is a list of additional activities, organised by the school, which require voluntary contributions from parents. These activities are known as ‘optional extras’.

• visits to museums;

• sporting activities which require transport expenses;

• outdoor adventure activities;

• musical / theatre events.


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 where the activity is not part of the National Curriculum. When such activities are arranged parents will be told how the charges were calculated.


Residential visits

If the school organises a residential visit in school time, or mainly in school time, which is to provide education directly related to the National Curriculum, we do not make any charge for the education element.  However, parents are obliged to at least pay for the residential expenses of such trips, and we also ask parents to contribute to the full cost of the travel and activity expenses as these are beyond the scope of our main school budget.


A savings scheme will operate to allow parents to spread the cost of such trips over a longer period of time.


Support is available for pupils whose parents are in receipt of Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, Child Tax Credit, provided the parent is not entitled to Working Tax Credit, the guaranteed element of State Pension Credit and an income related employment and support allowance that was introduced on 27 October 2008. 


Music Tuition

All children study music as part of the normal school curriculum. We do not charge for this. There is a charge for individual and group music tuition if this is not part of the National Curriculum eg peripatetic music teaching.


Optional activities outside of the school day

We may charge for optional, extra activities provided outside of the school day, for example after school football or other clubs. Such activities are not part of the National Curriculum or Religious Education, nor are they part of an examination syllabus.


Participation in any optional extra activity will be on the basis of parental choice and a parental agreement will be a pre-requisite for the provision of any optional extra activity.


Calculating charges

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 to cover adult supervision.  Support for cases of hardship will come through voluntary contributions and fundraising.


Parents who may qualify for support are those who are in receipt of Income Support, Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, Child Tax Credit, provided the parent is not entitled to Working Tax Credit, the guaranteed element of State Pension Credit and an income related employment and support allowance that was introduced on 27 October 2008. 


The principles of best value will be applied when planning activities that incur costs to the school and/or charges to parents.


Remissions

Pupils whose parents are in receipt of support payments will, in addition to having a free lunch entitlement, be entitled to a remission for any charges for board and lodging for residential visits which are part of the National Curriculum.


At the discretion of the Headteacher, other cases of hardship will be considered.


Arrangements for monitoring and evaluation

The Headteacher and Finance Committee will monitor the impact of this policy by annually discussing those activities that resulted in charges being levied, the subsidies awarded (without giving names) and the source of those subsidies. 


Links to legislation and guidance documents

Further information and guidance documents and legislative provisions concerning charging for school activities can be found in:


https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/278060/charging_for_school_activities.pdf


This policy will be reviewed annually.



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