Financial supports for school fees and waivers
With the current economic uncertainty some families are telling us they are having difficulty affording the fees we charge. These include fees for services such as transportation and noon supervision as well as instructional supplies and materials.
Public education is about values and choices. After extensive engagement with our communities, the decision was made to keep dollars in the classroom instead of subsidizing fees. This decision allows us to continue to provide a quality public education experience for all learners. Fees are charged only to cover the costs for the services or materials we provide.
Our own statistics reflect what is happening in the community. In 2012-13, waivers made up 8.7 per cent of total fee revenue. In 2015-16, waivers made up 11.8 per cent of fee revenue. For this school year, we are noticing that the waiver rate continues to increase but is beginning to slow.
We provide financial supports and services to assist families in need. Our waivers system ensures that no child is denied the right to public education. We are proud that our waiver process is in place to support all families, no matter how large or small, who need financial support to assist with school fees.
We offer both an income-based waiver and a principal-approved waiver, which means that any family facing economic hardship can receive support, whether or not they meet the provincial low-income threshold.
Our principals approve waivers for families on a case-by-case basis. In addition we offer flexible payment options for all of our fees so that payments can be spread out over time.
Please do not hesitate to ask your school staff about options and assistance should your family need it.
Stay in the loop regarding our budget
We want to make sure you are informed on our budget and the choices we make to ensure students come first.
Please visit cbe.ab.ca/budget to view our budget as well as supporting documents such as the Resource Allocation Method for Schools to learn how our schools are funded. Here you can also find a link to Dollars & Sense, where our chief financial officer responds to comments and questions.
As always, we are happy to hear from you regarding our budget. Please visit our website for links to our budget feedback form and information on all of our system engagement opportunities.
Chief Superintendent of Schools