New Guideline Released for School Fees
McGuinty Government Provides Clarity To Parents And School Boards
For the first time in Ontario a new guideline makes it clear that every student has the right to attend a publicly funded school without paying a fee for any learning materials or activities that are needed to graduate.
To provide clarity for parents and school boards, Ontario has released the first Guideline for Fees for Learning Materials and Activities. The guideline specifies that fees cannot be charged for materials needed to graduate, such as:
- Workbooks and textbooks
- Musical instruments
- Science supplies
- Lab materials, including safety goggles
- Guest speakers or class trips where the topic being covered is mandatory to completing the course.
The guideline also outlines how boards can set up a financial support program to help all students participate in activities, regardless of personal circumstances, while also respecting their privacy.
School boards will be required to make their policies publicly available on their websites.
Education funding has increased by 40 per cent since 2003, and covers the costs of materials and activities for elementary and secondary education. This funding has helped support student achievement, including a high school graduation rate of 81 per cent in 2009-10.
Making sure that every student has an equal opportunity to succeed is an important part of the Open Ontario plan to build a well-educated workforce and prepare Ontario for a more prosperous future.
- Draft guidelines on school fundraising are now posted for consultation.
- Fees are permitted for items such as graduation trips, student agendas, yearbooks and events.