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  1. #41
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    Isnt that why, in Victoria, they have the EMA that can go straight to the school to pay the fees for you? Only people on concession cards can get the EMA and my understanding was that you sign something that gives the money straight over to the school.

  2. #42
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    I'm in SA & DS is in grade 1, we pay $280, $25 of which is voluntary..however that includes all books & resources, the only extra cost is Uniforms & swimming in Term 4.

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solarberry View Post
    Isnt that why, in Victoria, they have the EMA that can go straight to the school to pay the fees for you? Only people on concession cards can get the EMA and my understanding was that you sign something that gives the money straight over to the school.
    Yes, but not everyone lives in Victoria, and not everyone in Victoria would use it for fees if there were other expenses.

    On the topic of excursions, some people might not have the money for fees, but use money from the Smith Family for outings and swimming, as it can be used for these but not for fees.

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by missie_mack View Post
    The various education acts are very clear when it comes to school fees. I was recently helping a friend out with this issue in Queensland. She received a $700 bill in school fees (ie not for electives) which she could not pay. The Principal told her that it HAD to be paid no matter what. However upon investigation the Education Act of Qld states
    “cost of providing instruction, administration and facilities for the education of the person at the school must be met by the State”.
    But their section which allows for a voluntary financial contribution “a State school’s principal may ask the parents of a student of the school to make a voluntary financial contribution towards the cost of providing instruction, administration and facilities for the education of the student at the school” and that “the student must still be provided the education even if the parents do not make the financial contribution”.

    Seems some schools like to tell fibs IMO
    I've never had occasion to look at the law on public school fees, but it is outrageous that schools can make these misrepresentations.

    If I, in the private sector, misled people about their liability to pay money, then I would be at the mercy of fair trading, but schools just do as they wish.

    And the people least likely to afford the fees are the ones who also often lack the knowledge and ability to fight it.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to MsMummy For This Useful Post:

    share a book  (26-02-2012)

  6. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by missie_mack View Post
    Seriously??!! Have you had a look at what is provided per a student dollar wise in a public school compared to a non government school? Most public schools can spend several thousand dollars more than their local catholic or affordable private school. If a public school is struggling financially they need to relook at how they spend their money IMO This type of idealogy is flawed when you see a private school providing absolutely everything for their students on $9k a year where a public school- in a low socio economic area even- is spending $13.5k and apparently needs more. And worse belittles and/or punishes those who cannot meet their fees.
    I said private schools with High Profits. Not the local catholic school. Big difference. If a small private school is struggling, of course they should get govt funding (and they do). But in terms of funding priority, every single student in Australia should have access to a certain level of educational resources before any government money is spent on well-funded schools. That does not happen in the current system. Just read the Gonski Report.

  7. #46
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    Poor private schools, my heart bleeds for them

  8. #47
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    Ok, I got the answer. Public schools can't force parents to pay the contribution as it's voluntary. Some schools try to bully parents by telling them (untruthfully) that their child will go without. Some parents stand up to the school and their kids miss out. Others don't know they can, or don't know how to, or don't care enough about education to do that. Their kids miss out. Unfortunately, these are the kids who need the extra support.

  9. #48
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    The public schools want, and really NEED most people to pay their voluntary contribution payments, otherwise they will not survive. Can you imagine sending your child to a school where they sit in a classroom with no electricity because the school couldn't afford the bill? Of course not, the parents would kick up a huge stink. So the school gets as many parents as the can to pay the 'voluntary' contributions. A percentage of parents will not pay them. The school might be able to survive if, say, 90% of parents pay the voluntary contributions, but probably not if only 50% pay them. So they do what they can to coerce as many parents as they can to pay them.

    I guess if more parents refused to pay the voluntary payments, the government would have to increase tax on the whole population of Australia in order to pay for those children’s school fees. SOMEONE will end up paying the voluntary contributions – either the parents of the child, or the taxpayer.

    I think the reason they’re called ‘voluntary’ is because Australia provides education to every child. If the parents refuse to pay, they cannot withhold the child’s education and tell them that they are not allowed to come to school anymore. They could withhold some aspects, like excursions, etc. but they cannot refuse school to a child.

    I think in Australia, we are so spoiled when it comes to education. We as a society don’t value education very much at all. We will pay $300 for a nintento DS for our 5 year old, but won’t pay $60 for a school fee. I’ve seen parents in PNG walk their children 3 hours every day to and from school, because they know how important education is. They will sacrifice everything to educate their child. They will do whatever they can to pay to get their child into a school. In the USA, if you want to go to uni, you are often looking at 50,000 in school fees, often more. So parents are saving for a ‘college education’ from before their child is even born. We forget how lucky we are with the cost of education in Australia. Even the private schools are very affordable. I worked in a small private school, and the government does not pay as much funding per child for private as they do for public. So we relied on parent contributions to keep the school going. I think last year, we made a $45,000 loss. We don’t make profits, ever. Any money we get from parent contributions or the government is spent before it’s made, on books, buildings, air conditioners, teachers wages, photocopying. Our classrooms are 30 year old transportable buildings. So the private sector DOES struggle too. But the parents see the value in a good education, they see that it is more than crappy buildings, and they make a commitment to paying what they can to give their child the best education that they can afford.
    The public schools want, and really NEED most people to pay their voluntary contribution payments, otherwise they will not survive. Can you imagine sending your child to a school where they sit in a classroom with no electricity because the school couldn't afford the bill? Of course not, the parents would kick up a huge stink. So the school gets as many parents as the can to pay the 'voluntary' contributions. A percentage of parents will not pay them. The school might be able to survive if, say, 90% of parents pay the voluntary contributions, but probably not if only 50% pay them. So they do what they can to coerce as many parents as they can to pay them.

    I guess if more parents refused to pay the voluntary payments, the government would have to increase tax on the whole population of Australia in order to pay for those children’s school fees. SOMEONE will end up paying the voluntary contributions – either the parents of the child, or the taxpayer.

    I think the reason they’re called ‘voluntary’ is because Australia provides education to every child. If the parents refuse to pay, they cannot withhold the child’s education and tell them that they are not allowed to come to school anymore. They could withhold some aspects, like excursions, etc. but they cannot refuse school to a child.

    I think in Australia, we are so spoiled when it comes to education. We as a society don’t value education very much at all. We will pay $300 for a nintento DS for our 5 year old, but won’t pay $60 for a school fee. I’ve seen parents in PNG walk their children 3 hours every day to and from school, because they know how important education is. They will sacrifice everything to educate their child. They will do whatever they can to pay to get their child into a school. In the USA, if you want to go to uni, you are often looking at 50,000 in school fees, often more. So parents are saving for a ‘college education’ from before their child is even born. We forget how lucky we are with the cost of education in Australia. Even the private schools are very affordable. I worked in a small private school, and the government does not pay as much funding per child for private as they do for public. So we relied on parent contributions to keep the school going. I think last year, we made a $45,000 loss. We don’t make profits, ever. Any money we get from parent contributions or the government is spent before it’s made, on books, buildings, air conditioners, teachers wages, photocopying. Our classrooms are 30 year old transportable buildings. So the private sector DOES struggle too. But the parents see the value in a good education, they see that it is more than crappy buildings, and they make a commitment to paying what they can to give their child the best education that they can afford.

  10. #49
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    *Runs off to pay the voluntary contribution that I had completely forgotten about!* I didn't realise they would ever miss out on things because of it

  11. #50
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    My mum works in a public high school in nsw, in the admin office. To her knowledge no child HAS to pay and of a family can't afford to pay for electives they can't take their projects home. She actually paid a boys fees last year for him so he could take home the coffee table he spent countless hours on. It's sad because they were taking it to the tip if he hadn't paid. Wtf?!

    She also me Mentioned the amount of well of people that don't pay. Eg the family who spent a month in Europe but refused to pay fees. I think if people can afford it they should pay which means that a child that really needs to be exempt from paying can be.


 

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