School fees a necessary evil for now
Wednesday, Apr 19, 2017 06:00 am
Itís not easy being a parent with children in school these days.
Not only do you have to get the kids ready for school and help them with homework, it can hurt the pocketbook in terms of supplies and school fees.
An Okotoks family, the Stasiuks, recently were told their two daughters would not be allowed to play rugby at Foothills Comp because family refused to pay school fees.
The Stasiuks refused to pay on principle ó they arenít a hardship case financially, they felt the school fees were nickel-and-diming parents and that fees were like a tuition. The family was fighting for Albertans.
School fees are a necessary evil and not a tuition.
They are needed to ensure students can get the quality education they need for the programs the students are taking.
With a fine arts program and multiple CTS programs, the cost at the Comp may be higher than other schools, but itís the cost of having the unique school in the area.
Although it would be great for things like lockers, school activities and other items to come from provincial coffers, the result would be complaints of high school taxes.
Itís possible school divisions can cut within their own budgets to eliminate or reduce school fees. However, trustees and school administrators have to watch their math.
Although parents do rumble about school fees, if trustees start to cut teachers or programs there would be a public outcry.
Hopefully, the NDPís proposed Bill 1 to reduce school fees by covering the cost of textbooks, work books and other common fees will pass soon.
Fortunately, the Foothills division moves faster than the Province ó it was able to find a resolution for the Stasiuks and the girls are on the pitch. As for school fees, they are needed until the province steps in.
Itís the cost of a quality education.