Policy Code: IGDE
Adoption Date: Tuesday, October 25th, 2016
The Board of Education recognizes the need: (1) to establish an orderly reasonable system of fees; (2) to provide adequate notice to student and families of fee and fee waiver requirements; and (3) to prohibit practices that would exclude those unable to pay from participation in school-sponsored activities consistent with school fees rules by the State Board of Education. Therefore, the Board establishes (1) an official fee policy, and (2) a fee waiver guideline. The Board authorizes the Superintendent and District Administration to establish administrative regulations consistent with this policy.
The following definitions and standards shall serve as regulations for local principals as they assess and collect fees at the local school level.
Fee: Any charge, deposit, rental, or other mandatory payment, however designated, whether in the form of money or goods. For purposes of this policy, charges related to the National School Lunch Program are not fees.
Provisions in Lieu of Fee Waiver: An alternative to fee payment and waiver of fee payment.
Student Supplies: Items which are the personal property of a student which, although used in the instructional process, are also commonly purchased and used by persons not enrolled in the class or activity in question and have a high probability of regular use in other than school-sponsored activities. The term includes pencils, papers, notebooks, crayons, scissors, basic clothing for healthy lifestyle classes, undergarments for athletics, and similar personal or consumable items over which a student retains ownership.
Optional Project: A project chosen and retained by a student in a vocational class or other class where projects are part of the curriculum, in lieu of a meaningful and productive project otherwise available to the student which would require only school-supplied materials.
Textbook: Book, workbook, and materials similar in function which are required for participation in any instructional course.
Waiver: Release from the requirement of payment of a fee and from any provision in lieu of fee payment. Students who have been granted waivers or provisions in lieu of fee waivers shall not be treated differently from other students or identified to persons who do not need such information.
Classes and Activities During the Regular School Day
1.1. No fee may be charged for any class or activity in kindergarten through sixth grade, including assemblies and field trips. (Elementary Schools)
1.2. Textbook, lab, and other course-related fees may only be charged in grades seven through twelve. (6th grade if included in a Secondary School)
1.3. Students must be able to enroll and participate in any class, and have the opportunity to acquire all skills and knowledge required for full credit and highest grades. They may do this without paying a fee or participating in a fund raising activity with the following exceptions:
1.3.1. Students of all grade levels may be required to provide materials for their optional projects. A student may not be required to select an optional project as a condition for enrolling in or completing a course. Project-related courses must be based upon projects and experiences that are free to all students.
1.3.2. Student supplies must be provided for elementary students. A student may, however, be required to replace supplies provided by the school that are lost, wasted, or damaged by the student due to careless or irresponsible behavior.
1.3.3. Secondary students may be required to provide their own student supplies.
School Activities Outside of the Regular School Day
2.1. Fees may be charged in connection with any school-sponsored activity, regardless of the age or grade level of the student, if participation is voluntary and does not affect a student's grade or ability to participate fully in any course taught during the day.
2.2. Fees related to extracurricular activities sponsored by the Utah High School Activities Association may not exceed limits established by the Association. Activity fees for secondary schools are required and established annually.
3.1. No fee may be charged or assessed in connection with any class or school sponsored or supported activity, including extracurricular activities, unless the fee has been set and approved by the local board of education in accordance with this policy.
3.2. Fee schedules and policies for the entire district shall be adopted at least once each year by the local board of education in a regularly scheduled public meeting of the board. Provision shall be made for broad public notice and participation in the development of fee schedules and waiver policies.
3.3. The District shall adopt procedures to reasonably ensure that the parent or guardian of each student receives written notice of fee schedules and fee waiver policies before the fees are due. Procedures for fee waivers shall be written in language that is easily understood and included with student registration materials.
3.4. No present or former student may be denied receipt of transcripts or a diploma for failure to pay school fees other than a reasonable charge made to cover the cost of duplicating or mailing. No charge may be made for duplicating or mailing copies of school records to an elementary or secondary school in which the student is enrolled or intends to enroll.
3.5. A Board of Education shall provide, as part of any fee policy or schedule, for adequate waivers or other provisions to ensure that no student is denied the opportunity to participate in a class or school sponsored or supported activity because of an inability to pay a fee. The waiver policy shall include procedures to ensure that:
3.5.1. A person is designated in each school to administer the policy and grant waivers (school principal);
3.5.2. The process for obtaining waivers or pursuing alternatives is administered fairly, objectively, and without students and parents;
3.5.3. Fee waivers or other provisions in lieu of fee waivers are available to all students who are in state custody or receiving public assistance in the form of aid to dependent children, general relief, supplemental security income, or foster care, and others whose parents or guardians are financially unable to pay;
3.5.4. Textbook fees are waived for all eligible students in accordance with §53-13a-4 of the Utah Code;
3.5.5. Parents are given the opportunity to review proposed alternatives to fee waivers;
3.5.6. An appeal process is available, including the opportunity to appeal to the board or its designee; and
3.5.7. The Board provides for balancing of financial inequities among district schools, if the granting of waivers and alternatives to waivers produces significant inequities through unequal impact on individual schools.
3.6. To preserve equal opportunity for all students and to limit diversion of money and school and staff resources from the basic school program, each district's fee policies shall be designed to limit student expenditures for school sponsored activities, including expenditures for activities, uniforms, clubs, clinics, travel, and subject area and vocational leadership organizations whether local, state or national.
3.7. Expenditures for uniforms, costumes, clothing, and accessories, if other than typical student dress, which are required for participants in choirs, pep clubs, drill teams, athletic teams, bands, orchestras, and other student groups, are fees requiring approval of the local Board of Education.
3.8. The requirements of fee waiver and availability of other provisions in lieu of fee waiver do not apply to charges assessed pursuant to a student's damaging or losing school property. Schools may pursue reasonable methods for obtaining payment for such charges, but may not exclude students from school or withhold transcripts or diplomas to obtain payment of those charges.
3.9. Charges for class rings, letter jackets, and similar articles not required for participation in a class or activity are not fees and are not subject to the waiver requirements of this policy.