4:140 - Waiver of Student Fees

Policy 4:140

Business and Non-Instructional Operations

Waiver of Student Fees

The Superintendent will recommend to the Board for adoption what fees, if any, will be charged for the use of textbooks, consumable materials, extracurricular activities, and other school fees. Students will pay for loss or damage of school books or other school- owned materials.

Students shall not be denied educational services or academic credit due to the inability of parent(s)/guardian(s) to pay fees and charges. Students whose parents are unable to afford student fees may receive a waiver of student fees. Fees for textbooks and other instructional materials are waived for students who meet the eligibility criteria for a fee waiver as described in this policy. In order that no student is denied educational services or academic credit due to the inability of parents/guardians to pay student fees, the Superintendent will recommend to the Board which additional fees, if any, the District will waive for students who meet the eligibility criteria for fee waiver. However, these students are not exempt from charges for lost and damaged books, locks, materials, supplies, and equipment.

Notifcation and Application

The Superintendent shall ensure that applications for fee waivers are widely available and distributed according to state law and ISBE rule and that provisions for assisting parent(s)/guardian(s) in completing the application are available. The content of this policy for the waiver of school fees and a description of the fees subject to waiver shall be communicated in writing to the parents of all students enrolling in the district for the first time. Additionally, the first bill or notice of each school year sent to parents who owe fees shall state: i) the district waives fees for persons unable to afford them in accordance with its policy; and i) the procedure for applying for a fee waiver, or the name, address and telephone number of the person to contact for information concerning a fee waiver. Applications for fee waivers may be submitted by a student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) who have been assessed a fee on an application form available on the District website or at the District office.

Eligibility Criteria

A student shall be eligible for a fee waiver when the student currently lives in a household that meets the same income guidelines, with the same limits based on household size, that are used for the federal free meals program. Students must meet the income requirements of the program but need not participate in order to receive a waiver of school fees.

The Superintendent or designee will give additional consideration where one or more of the following factors are present:

  • illness in the family;
  • unusual expenses such as fire, flood, storm damage, etc.;
  • nemployment;
  • emergency situations;
  • when one or more of the parents/guardians are involved in a work stoppage.

Verification

The Superintendent or designee shall establish a process for determining a student’s eligibility for a waiver of fees in accordance with state law requirements. The Superintendent or designee may require family income verification at the time an individual applies for a fee waiver and anytime thereafter, but not more often than once every 60 calendar days. The Superintendent or designee shall not use any information from this or any independent verification process to determine free or reduced-price meal eligibility.

If a student receiving a fee waiver is found to be no longer eligible during the school year, the Superintendent or designee shall notify the student’s parent/guardian and charge the student a prorated amount based upon the number of school days remaining in the school year.

Determination and Appeal

Within 30 calendar days after the receipt of a waiver request, the Superintendent or designee shall mail a notice to the parent/guardian whenever a waiver request is denied. A fee waiver denial notice shall include: (1) the reason for the denial, (2) the process and timelines for making an appeal, and (3) a statement that the parent(s)/guardian(s) may reapply for a waiver at any time during the school year if circumstances change. If the denial is appealed, the District shall follow the procedures for the resolution of appeals as provided in the Illinois State Board of Education rule on waiver of fees. Questions regarding the fee waiver request process should be addressed to the Superintendent.

Adopted: April 20, 1998
Revised: March 19, 2012; March 23, 2015; April 23, 2019

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