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BNL Parents May Not Have To Pay Book Fees At Beginning Of School Year
Updated April 23, 2014 7:04 AM | Filed under: Education
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(BEDFORD) - With one eye on school finances and another on parents' pocketbooks, North Lawrence Community Schools officials could make changes in those policies.

The Times-Mail reports that the ideas were raised during a work session of the NL school board. They could come up for an official vote during the regular board meeting, which is set for 6 p.m. Thursday.

One recommended change involves how parents pay for book rentals, fees and other school costs.

Mark Vice, NLCS curriculum director, recommended that parents be billed in late September or early October, instead of at the start of the school year.

In the cases of some high school students, Vice said, the school system sends out inaccurate bills under the current plan. That's because a high school student can drop or add classes for a few days into the new school year. In those cases, he said, the school has to recalculate the student's bill and send another one to parents. Vice says moving the billing date back will eliminate that redundancy.

Vice says if parents want to pay when they show up, that's just fine and anticipates that most parents of students in elementary school and middle school will do just that.

Superintendent Gary Conner added that parents face a lot of expenditures as the school year starts. Putting off the formal billing by a couple of weeks could mean that parents could spread out those expenses in a more manageable fashion.

In a related move, Vice recommended that Bedford North Lawrence High School stick to a five-day limit during which students can drop and add courses.

The school processes hundreds of such changes each year, he said. As it stands now, parents get refunds on a pro-rated basis for a class a student drops. The amount of the refund varies, depending on how long the student is in the course.

Vice recommended that the five-day limit be enforced. That means that, after the first five days, the parent would pay the fees for that class, even if the student drops it.

Vice says BNL would still allow changes to the second semester schedule after the first five days, because students would not have started those classes.

Vice also recommended that Bedford North Lawrence High School stick to a five-day limit during which students can drop and add courses.

The school processes hundreds of such changes each year, he said. As it stands now, parents get refunds on a pro-rated basis for a class a student drops. The amount of the refund varies, depending on how long the student is in the course.

Vice recommended that the five-day limit be enforced. That means that, after the first five days, the parent would pay the fees for that class, even if the student drops it.

Vice says BNL would still allow changes to the second semester schedule after the first five days, because students would not have started those classes.



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