By Laura Katauskas
In a committee review of school fees, the Valley View School District 365U is proposing to hold most fees at current rates for the upcoming school year but a marginal increase across certain fees will be added starting with the 2019-2020 school year.
According to Assistant Superintendent Gary Grizaffi, the committee, made up of administration, parents and personnel, discussed the need to assess school fees, the impact on families and the wide range of services the district offers and compared fee schedules for surrounding school districts.
The committee took into account a variety of services the district offers including all-day kindergarten; security improvements to all buildings; wall-to-wall Wi-Fi; Chromebook distribution and usage protection to students; expansion of digital content to aid instruction; activity buses for after school activities; athletic trainers at all athletic events; concussion sports testing; arrival and dismissal supervisory personnel; and participation in clubs at elementary and middle school schools.
The primary changes being recommended are the addition of a $10 fee for Tech Device Usage and Protection. The fee would cover the use and protection for student use of a Chromebook at home and at school. At middle and high school, the protection will cover the following events with no deductible: accidental damage, drops, liquid spills, theft, burglary and robbery, fire, flood, third party vandalism, natural disasters and power surge due to lightning. However it does not cover deliberate acts of vandalism or negligence by the user.
Fees are not recommended for an increase in the 2017-2018 school year, with the exception of the band instrument rental fee, which will increase $5 beginning in the school year 2017-18. Registration fees, at all levels will increase by $5 beginning with the 2018-2019 school year, and an additional $5 for the 2019-2020 school year. In addition, a $5 increase will be seen in middle school co-curricular competitive and athletic participation fees; high school co-curricular non-athletic competitive club participation fees; and high school co-curricular athletic participation fees. These fees are used to defray the costs of coaches and sponsors, referees, supplies and transportation.
High school student parking fee would remain $120. An increase of $5 for the school year 2019-2020 is being proposed. Paid bus transportation would remain at $525 annually and the family maximum of $1,050 annually.
There will be a high school concert band and choir dress fee of $15 beginning 2017-2018. In addition, high school course fees ranging from $10 to $50 to cover extraordinary supplies, materials and/or field trips would be assessed to students registered for Career and Technical Education, Fine Arts, Advanced Science and Adventure Physical Education Classes.
A final recommendation will be brought to the Board for consideration and action at the board meeting April 17.