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Old 08-27-2009, 02:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I keep seeing references to fees for public schools. I've never heard of that -- did that exist when we were in school? What fees are you guys talking about? Are you talking about mandatory registration fees, or the cost of optional extras like spirit t-shirts and yearbooks (which I wouldn't consider "fees")?

And when do these fees start? My son is entering K this year -- am I going to have to pay something when school starts (the handouts they've given me don't mention anything)?

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:33 PM
 
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I keep seeing references to fees for public schools. I've never heard of that -- did that exist when we were in school? What fees are you guys talking about? Are you talking about mandatory registration fees, or the cost of optional extras like spirit t-shirts and yearbooks (which I wouldn't consider "fees")?

And when do these fees start? My son is entering K this year -- am I going to have to pay something when school starts (the handouts they've given me don't mention anything)?
My friend in ohio has to rent her children't text books and purchase their workbooks. If she doesn't pay the fees they still have to give the kids the books, but they withhold their report cards and school pictures.

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:36 PM
 
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We didn't have registration fees but paid $30 per kid for school supplies and $10 per month for my pre-k kid's snack fee. Other than that, most things are optional (school pics, yearbooks, t-shirts, etc.)

Field trips are usually extra, and depends on the outing.

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We didn't have registration fees but paid $30 per kid for school supplies and $10 per month for my pre-k kid's snack fee. Other than that, most things are optional (school pics, yearbooks, t-shirts, etc.)

Field trips are usually extra, and depends on the outing.
Yeah, that kind of stuff I'm prepared for. We spent about $25 on school supplies, and I'll pack DS's snack every day, but obviously that's a cost I'm expecting and feel I am responsible for anyway.

Is this the kind of stuff people are talking about when they reference "fees"?

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:40 PM
 
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No fees here at all never heard of that before.

 
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Old 08-27-2009, 02:44 PM
 
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A lot of states have schools that have material and book fees, and bus fees.

However, you can check your state laws. If it says that every child has the right to a free and appropriate education, you can challenge the fees. In CA if you can't afford the scientific calculator that is required for your child's geometry class....the school MUST provide one. They can't deny a child an education because they can't afford school supplies.

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:44 PM
 
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Some public schools require textbook rentals and workbook purchases?!

As a former poor kid, this makes me sad. The only time we needed money for school was for extra-curriculars or special classes that required supplies (like cooking, high school art, etc.). I remember having near-anxiety attacks for having to ask my parents for a $20 special class fee, because I knew they'd have to make sacrifices for it and wouldn't be happy. If we had to rent textbooks my mother would have had a conniption.

I really think that public school should be 100% fee free. (Obviously not including meals or extras like sports or yearbooks.)

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:45 PM
 
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I just saw that you are in CA, you have nothing to worry about. School fees are illegal here.

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Old 08-27-2009, 02:58 PM
 
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There was a thread here awhile back about this. It was a shock to me too. Apparently some places have a cost for registration?

not here...

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Old 08-27-2009, 03:02 PM
 
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We had a registration fee of $100, and a textbook rental fee of $18. Add to that over $50 of school supplies (kleenex, pencils, erasers, etc), and it really adds up. I'm grateful that I only have one child in public schools.
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Old 08-27-2009, 03:10 PM
 
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Yeah, that kind of stuff I'm prepared for. We spent about $25 on school supplies, and I'll pack DS's snack every day, but obviously that's a cost I'm expecting and feel I am responsible for anyway.

Is this the kind of stuff people are talking about when they reference "fees"?
oh, yeah, and I included the school supplies because it was an actual fee that we paid to the teacher but other than that, I pay for lunches and the snack fee I mentioned. Registration fees seem crazy to me for public schools.

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Old 08-27-2009, 03:20 PM
 
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We had a registration fee of $100, and a textbook rental fee of $18. Add to that over $50 of school supplies (kleenex, pencils, erasers, etc), and it really adds up. I'm grateful that I only have one child in public schools.
What happens if you can't pay it? Are your children denied an education?

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Old 08-27-2009, 03:47 PM
 
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My daughter's kindergarten fees for textbook rental this year was $101. I applied for textbook assistance through the school (which is through the state, I believe) and they waived all of the fee except for $4.95. She also qualified for free lunches.

My son's preschool fee is $50.
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Old 08-27-2009, 03:52 PM
 
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What happens if you can't pay it? Are your children denied an education?
No, but you do have to provide proof of hardship in order to qualify for free or reduced fees -- just like lunches. In fact, I think it's the same paperwork, but I'm not positive of that. You can set up a payment schedule, and I think there's a maximum cap for families with multiple children in the system. I don't know what they'd do if you just didn't pay it at all.
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Old 08-27-2009, 03:55 PM
 
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No, but you do have to provide proof of hardship in order to qualify for free or reduced fees -- just like lunches. In fact, I think it's the same paperwork, but I'm not positive of that. You can set up a payment schedule, and I think there's a maximum cap for families with multiple children in the system. I don't know what they'd do if you just didn't pay it at all.
I frequently see our school corporation suing parents for school fees at the end of the school year in the town newspaper. I'm assuming thats how they end up getting their money.
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:14 PM
 
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I'm in the suburbs of Chicago and I just paid $76 to register my dd for 1st grade. That was just to get her enrolled.
I know at the h.s the parents have to pay registration and also for the books. It adds up to about $300 every year....then after paying for those textbooks they have to return them at the end of the year or the parents are charged again.
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:19 PM
 
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Not here. Once your kid is in middle school, they do have to pay for sports related things, but that's it.
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:35 PM
 
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There was a really good thread about this a while back in Learning at School - you should search for it.

That thread made me realize how NUTS our school fees are. We register in the spring and I pay aprox $250 for one child, first grade. That includes all school supplies (which are bought by the school), classroom fund, field trips - pretty much everything except for lunch money and little extras. Also includes PTA membership with is pushed on you because they've had 100% parent participation since the dawn of time.

I did recently learn that a friend of mine who's child goes to the same school was unable to pay, and they let her register and make payments all summer long. Not sure what they do though if people simply can't come up with it. FWIW, we live in an affluent area where the majority of people don't have a problem paying that fee.

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Old 08-27-2009, 04:40 PM
 
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$20 per child for the year to help with supplies. Free registration.

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Old 08-27-2009, 05:22 PM
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I think there were some fees when I was in high school? I have this vague memory of text book deposits (that we got back at the end of the year if we turned them all in and they were in good condition)? And maybe some other fees? If so they were pretty minimal and my parents were solidly middle class so they wouldn't have been an issue for us. Oh, and I graduated in 1988.

No fees for DS for K this year. And the supply list was, "backback and one folder." Which really surprised me as I was expecting a lot more. So I bought a $20 Office Max gift card for his K teacher and brought her a box of kleenex for the classroom because I'm sure she's shelling out for extra glue sticks and stuff.

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Old 08-27-2009, 05:27 PM
 
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We absolutely have school fees here, and NO, they don't have to let you go to school unless you pay them. The fee for dd's class (K) is $50, plus i spent another $25 or so on her list of required school supplies. Then of course i had to buy her clothes, shoes, etc. Kids who qualify for reduced/free lunch DO get a discount on their school/book fees, but it is about a 50% reduction - they do NOT get "free" fees. Fees range from about $35-120 here per year, depending on year, and in the higher grades, what courses you are taking. Elective courses might have additional fees on top of that, and extracurriculers or sports even more fees on top of that. They DO let you pay it in 4 installments though, so that is nice for some families. For example, dd's $50 fee can be split into 4 payments of $12.50 every 2 months, which is reasonable for basically any family.
After all that, you get the tshirt fees, school pic fees, fundraising stuff...but those are all optional.

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Old 08-27-2009, 05:29 PM
 
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I'm in CA and we pay a bus fee and sometimes we have to pay for field trips but that is all. I can't believe that in some states you have to pay to enroll your child in public school....THAT'S JUST WRONG!:
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Old 08-27-2009, 05:50 PM
 
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I'm in CA and we pay a bus fee and sometimes we have to pay for field trips but that is all. I can't believe that in some states you have to pay to enroll your child in public school....THAT'S JUST WRONG!:
That depends on school district. When I went to school in Sonoma Valley we had to buy bus tickets, and the parents went to court because it was against ed-code to make us pay to ride the school bus.....but the school went back to charging again the next year and the parent group gave up the fight.

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Old 08-27-2009, 05:55 PM
 
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Wow. I have never heard of a fee to register for public school. I thought those were illegal everywhere. Eek. We have to buy school supplies of course, and if DD takes any electives that have fees we pay those (or try). But to register? That just seems so wrong.
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Old 08-27-2009, 07:37 PM
 
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No, but you do have to provide proof of hardship in order to qualify for free or reduced fees -- just like lunches. In fact, I think it's the same paperwork, but I'm not positive of that.
Where we live there is a $25 per child fee for textbooks. The fee is waved for all children on free/reduced lunch program (no extra paper work).

I believe there is a way to request it be waved if you have hardship but don't qualify for free lunches.

And there's no penalty for not paying the fee. I forgot to pay it last year (really, truly just forgot) and they didn't even mention it for months. Then I paid. Not sure what would have happened if I hadn't.

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Old 08-27-2009, 07:58 PM
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My childrens school does not have a fee, but the highschool I went to did. It was $200, and it had to be paid by graduation so you had 4 years to pay on it.
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Old 08-27-2009, 08:03 PM
 
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I frequently see our school corporation.
Your what?
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Old 08-27-2009, 08:46 PM
 
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We had a supply list to buy off of and then the first day of school we were charged an additional $25 for art project supplies or something. Kind of surprised me, too.

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Old 08-27-2009, 10:18 PM
 
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My town charges for buses. It isn't part of the 'free education' . $250 per child with a cap of 900/max so you have to have 4 kids in school to reach the cap. And if you don't pay you don't ride the bus. Most of the parents that can't pay or don't want to drop off or pick up their children.

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Old 08-27-2009, 11:05 PM
 
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Indiana is awful when it comes to public school fees. We just paid over $100 for a Kindergartener's books/materials fee. My neighbors paid $500 for two students in high school. Public school - we've already paid for this with taxes, right?
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