St. Charles Music Students Face Higher Fees in 2013-14
St. Charles Community Unit School District 303 committee advances proposed fee increases for formal Board of Education consideration.
Instrument rental fees for music students would more than double in the coming school year, under a recommendation advanced by last week by a St. Charles Community Unit School District 303 Board of Education committee.
The board’s Business Services Committee advanced the proposal to the board’s action agenda for further discussion during a meeting Thursday evening at the district’s administration offices.
Musical instrument fees are $50 a year at elementary, middle and high school levels, but would increase to $100, $115 and $125, respectively, under the proposal. District 303 Chief Financial Officer Brad Cauffman explained that the existing fees were not covering the district’s actual costs of having the instruments cleaned and reconditions at the end of each school years, and that the increase would make up the difference.
The musical instrument fee increase was among a series of more modest increases proposed for the 2013-14 school year, as well as some downward adjustments in tuition for all-day kindergarten students. Those fees drew the greater scrutiny at Thursday’s meeting.
At issue is whether tuition should be increased for lower-income all-day kindergarten students who qualified for the National School Lunch Program.
Some board members feel every family should pay something, while others believe any fee for lower-income families is too much for families living on tight budgets.
The board will take the issue up formally at an upcoming meeting, but Superintendent Dr. Donald Schlomann advised the committee the entire issue could be rendered pointless is a bill awaiting action in the state House of Representatives becomes law. The bill, he said, would make all-day kindergarten a requirement for school districts. Doing so, he said, would eliminate the district’s ability to charge tuition for what is an optional offering now.
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