Charges and Remissions Policy
In accordance with sections 449-462 of the Education Act 1996, Mengham Junior School will ensure that all education provided during school hours is free of charge, with the exception of vocal and instrumental tuition (see section 1 below).
The school will not charge for educational activities that happen outside school hours when these activities are a necessary part of the National Curriculum or form part of the school’s basic curriculum for religious education. There may, however, be charges for other activities which fall within the category of optional extras (see section 2 below).
1. Extra-Curricular Music Tuition
The school employs peripatetic music teachers through the Hampshire Music Service for pupils who wish to receive instrumental tuition.
This is now undertaken privately by a third party and fully funded by parents and carers. Charges for music tuition will not be made in respect of any pupil who is looked after by the local authority within the meaning of section 22(1) of the Children Act 1989 (a)
2. Optional Extras
All clubs run out of school hours (i.e. before of after school or during the lunch break) are counted as optional extras. The following conditions will apply:
- With exception of Breakfast Club, clubs run by school staff out of school hours will be offered free of charge. Staff may, however, request a small voluntary contribution towards the cost of renewable resources (e.g. for cookery ingredients, art and craft materials).
- External providers of clubs may charge for their services. In these cases parents will be charged directly by the providers.
In the summer term each year the school arranges a sleepover in year 3, camp out in year 4 and residential visit for pupils in years 5 and 6. These visits are regarded as optional extras. The usual practice is for the residential establishment to charge the school and the school then passes on these charges to parents, together with a small additional cost to cover transport to and from the establishment.
Remissions for optional extras
In cases of hardship remissions for optional extras can be approved at the discretion of the Headteacher.
3. Other School Trips, Visits etc.
Special events and trips are arranged throughout the year for all year groups to enrich the curriculum. All trips, visits etc will be subject to the following considerations:
- All trips and other events will be carefully costed and efforts made to keep costs down as far as possible e,g. by making use of the school minibus to provide transport.
- Trips will be evaluated and monitored by the staff, Headteacher and governors to ensure that they provide good value for money. To facilitate monitoring by governors, the Headteacher will provide an annual report to the governors’ Curriculum Committee on trips and visits taking place in the preceding year.
- The school relies on parental support to maintain the school’s programme of trips and other events. Parents will usually be asked to make a voluntary contribution towards the cost of each trip. If this causes financial difficulties, parents should arrange an appointment to discuss the situation with the Headteacher. However, the school has very limited resources to subsidise the cost of trips and, if insufficient contributions are received from parents, a trip or other special event may have to be cancelled. Parents will be reimbursed for any payments they have made if this eventuality occurs.
4. Charges for Providing Information under the Freedom of Information Act
Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 the school has to produce a publication scheme setting out the classes of information the school intends to publish, the manner in which the information will be published and whether the information is available free of charge or on payment. Details about which publications are available can be found in the school prospectus and in the “Publication Scheme on Information Available under the Freedom of Information Act 2000” (both of which can be obtained from the school office). Single copies of information covered by the publication scheme will be provided free. Multiple copies will be provided at a cost of 5p per sheet.
Other information, not published under the publication scheme, can also be requested. However, a request for information is only valid if it is made in writing (including fax or e-mail), has the name and correspondence address of the enquirer and gives details of the information required.
Requests for information must be dealt with promptly and the information provided within 20 working days.
In the majority of cases, information supplied by the school under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act will be provided free of charge. However, where bulk copying is required and/or retrieval of information from storage is needed (e.g. as in the case of past minutes of Governors’ meetings) it will be necessary for the school to assess the number of hours of staff time likely to be spent on complying with the request i.e. on locating, retrieving and copying the information. In some such cases charges may be made, in accordance with the Freedom of Information Fees Regulations.