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EOTC Fees and Donations Scenarios

 

Camps (which are defined as any overnight, curriculum-related trip) are the exception to the Ministry of Education Donations scheme.  Whether a school Board of Trustees opts in or out of the scheme, a  donation for camps can still be asked for.  Whether the parent pays a donation for the camp or not is up to the parents, but the school cannot stop a student from attending a camp if a donation has not been paid. All students are entitled by law to participate in curriculum-based activities.

If the Board of Trustees opts into the scheme, it cannot ask parents for a donation towards curriculum-related day trips.

If the Board of Trustees does not join the scheme, it can ask for a donation towards curriculum-related day trips, but it cannot stop a student from going on the trip, regardless of whether a donation has been made or not.

 

Example Scenarios

 

  • A school is using the Health and Physical Education Achievement Standard 3.4 and gives the students a choice in the context they are assessed. One context is based at the school at no cost, the second context is skiing at a cost (that the school is incorrectly charging as a fee at the moment).

Regardless of whether a school Board of Trustees provides a choice of an in-school achievement standard assessment or an out-of-school achievement standard assessment, if the ski trip is curriculum-based, any student in that class is entitled to go, donation paid or not.

 

  • An outdoor education programme, where there is deliberation about dropping all the assessment from a trip and making it optional so they can charge a fee for it (it would still only be open to students in that particular class).

With an overnight Outdoor Education trip, a school’s Board of Trustees can ask for a donation, but if it's part of the curriculum, assessment or not, they cannot restrict who goes.   

 

  • A school providing alternative assessment opportunities for those that don’t pay to go on the trip.

School Boards should provide alternative assessment opportunities for students who don't go on a curriculum-based trip if a student is sick, injured or other reasons. But, as all students are entitled to go on a curriculum-based trip, they cannot be restricted from going if they have not made a donation. 

 

  • A class that goes on an overseas trip, for example, a Japanese language class.

A trip overseas, if part of the curriculum, entitles every student to go without paying.  If it’s not part of the curriculum, school boards can charge for the trip and/or fundraise. 

 

  • Oversubscription of outdoor education classes.  In the past, the first to pay get into the class. Can teachers pick students for the limited places in their class based on if they thought the students would pay their donation?

With outdoor education classes that are over-subscribed, schools may select students for a class based on their published criteria, but it is unlawful to restrict students based on their ability to pay a donation.

 

  • When schools are asking for donations towards camp, can they ask for a donation towards the use of external instructors?

School boards can ask for a donation towards outside instructors for overnight camps, but parents have the choice of donating or not and the school board cannot restrict who goes on the camp.