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Asking for money for exam materials. Boring question!

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Doitforfree, Feb 23, 2016.

  1. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    What are the rules about a school asking for money for essential supplies? My son's doing photography GCSE and, in addition to the sketchbooks he's already been asked to buy for school use, we got a slightly threatening email saying we now need to buy an exam sketchbook otherwise our children might not be able to sit the exam. Is that allowed? It's a bit galling when i didn't want him to take the subject in the first place!
     
  2. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    This may be helpful for you:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploa...ging_for_school_activities_-_October_2014.pdf

    Tagging @Rott Weiler , who is likely to know whether this guidance has been superseded - although with an October 2014 publication date it seems unlikely.

    On page 4 it sets out clearly what a school may not charge for:

    "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 a syllabus for a prescribed public examination that the pupil is being prepared for at the school".

    Have a look at the guidance and see if this fits the bill.

    If this doesn't help, come back!
     
  3. lapinrose

    lapinrose Star commenter

    Food and Textiles have always expected raw materials to be supplied from home!
     
    cissy3 likes this.
  4. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    Thank you. I've paid up anyway but I was curious as to the rules. It's bizare when you think about it that children have always been expected to bring stuff in or pay for some subjects when it's not allowed. I wish schools would be more honest. I don't object particularly but it was the threatening tone of the letter, that the children wouldn't be allowed to do the exam if we didn't pay up, that got to me.
     
  5. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    I would be tempted to write to the HTconcerned, enclosing a copy of the guidance and take issue with the threatening tone. That is unacceptable.

    The guidance makes clear that schools are able to ask for 'voluntary contributions'. If they were to have contacted parents at the outset and explained that they could put on GCSE Photography for the interest and benefit of the students... but that it incurred additional costs that the school was unable to resource...would need to ask for voluntary contributions for some things...pointed out that it was not compulsory...and reminded parents of that in the most recent letter...no-one could have much cause for complaint!
     
  6. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    I think that certain items have always been expected to be provided by parents. How would PE kit stand?
     
  7. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    Don't they lump that in as uniform and have provision to help low-icnome families with it?
     
  8. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    Yes, but isn't it still a bit grey? Protective aprons, calculators pens etc - often expected to provide / traditionally have - not sure that it is totally clear cut.
     
  9. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    That would have been nice - can of worms time.My son's year were made to do two GCSEs early, with the promise that in the time then available in year 11 the pupils might start an A level, or learn a new language or any number of enticing things. As it turned out the only courses on offer were those provided by any teachers who happened to have a few spare hours. It was an odd set of choices and a GCSE course of any kind was about the best to choose, but the options were pretty limited. Given the early entry GCSEs were, even by the school's own admission, a total disaster (they've completely changed how they do it because of how it ddin't work with my son's year) it would have been a lot more acceptable to consolidate what they'd only half done in the early entry, rather than picking up another low grade GCSE. And now to be asked to pay for their wretched mistakes...!
     
  10. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    Ah...don't get me started on early entry :D Not only are they frequently a complete disaster, they potentially impact on those aspiring to places at top universities. They can use GCSE grades to differentiate and do not have to take into account poor grades from early entries, because they have plenty of applicants who have done early entry AND got the grades! I was often a lone dissenting voice in my previous school - fortunately the area subject inspector / adviser agreed with me, though I'm not sure it won me any friends to have to argue that they did not know what they were talking about!

    If the school has imposed GCSE Photography then absolutely NO excuse for charging!! I would moan about it!!
     

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