Radio NZ News 31 Mar 2008
The Education Minister says he will personally deal with complaints from parents if schools try to force them to pay voluntary school fees. Chris Carter told an education forum in Auckland on Saturday that he recently told off the principal at a Whangarei school, who he says made boys sit in the hall until their parents had paid a school fee. He says he gave the principal a strong message reminding him that parents should be responsible for their children, but that children cannot be responsible for their parents.
Mr Carter says no school has a legal right to insist that parents pay voluntary fees. He says he feels very strongly about the issue and if parents have evidence that schools are crossing the line they should email him and he will deal with them.
Heavy response ignores underlying funding issues PPTA 31 Mar 08 http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/ED0803/S00078.htm
Thirty-six percent of schools funding comes from sources outside of Government operations grants and these were generally from local sources such as parents. Curriculum fees were needed to cover costs schools faced in providing materials for elective classes such as technology and home economics, he said. “It is quite clear that schools have to try and maximise every bit of income they have, otherwise they can’t make ends meet”.