Lynden Schools reduce, eliminate fees and required supply purchases

Lynden Schools reduce, eliminate fees and required supply purchases
Posted on 08/09/2017
The Lynden Schools athletic fees for 2017: eliminated. Activity fees: gone. Some class fees: removed. Supplies required by families for purchase: reduced.

“We don’t want to burden families on what we could view as basic supplies,” says David VanderYacht, assistant superintendent. “That is part of a bigger picture of getting rid of some fees.”

For the 2017-18 school year, the Lynden Schools Board of Directors has approved the elimination of a list of fees and reduced the required supply list asked of each family.

At the middle and high schools, students will no longer have fees associated with regular classes when it comes as part of standard curriculum. For example, the fees for art and woodshop will now get covered by the district, although students choosing to do projects above and beyond the scope of the regular class will have a fee for the additional materials.

Both schools have eliminated the pay-to-play fee for athletics.

The middle school will now cover the cost for student planners and has removed the rental fee for band equipment.

In the elementary school, supplies that are for individual student use will still be provided by families, such as notebooks, paper, writing utensils, erasers and more. But supplies that were in the past requested by the district for shared use, such as dry erase markers, plastic baggies, facial tissue, hand sanitizer and more will now be covered by the district. Each elementary school will communicate the specifics with families.

VanderYacht says that some of the fees were implemented in 2008 and some have been long-standing. “We don’t believe that the system of fees creates an equitable opportunity for all families,” he says. “It was driven by the board of directors with the vision of superintendent Jim Frey.”

The additional cost to the district will be handled from the general operating budget and will phase in starting in the fall with the potential for the district to identify additional changes in the future.