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PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:48 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
I went private (NHS wouldn't do it because I was 'too young!') and had the snip when I was 25; I had my two and that was enough for me...

...and yes, it did cost me my marriage to #2 because despite her 'We'll have a great life, loads of holidays...' attitude she didn't really mean it; and who could really blame her?

FWIW I never went on any of the fancy school trips (Peak District and Blue John Mines in Junior school, various exchanges and skiing trips in Grammar...) but I don't think I missed out on anything.

Kids have too much too soon these days, then when they have to go out and provide for themselves the rot sets in because all of a sudden they can't have what they want, when they want it; and if they are in a relationship most of the friction involved will be to do with money, or lack thereof...


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 1:39 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:19 am
Posts: 2096
Location: Sheffield, top city
As someone who works in a school, here's how it should be.

the school should have a hardship fund for those under hardship, but not on income support/free schools etc. Some families have lots of kids/only one earner/laid off from work etc, who don't qualify for means tested benefits, but require assistance - write to the head teacher or school business manager asking how they could help.

for those on income/means tested support, the kids qualify for free school meals and as such, the govt has stumped up millions to create "pupil premium" - funding designed exclusively for these kids to give them an equal opportunity. you need to tap into this if it applies. Ofsted and DfE are keen that this is targeted in the right place.

Whatever your income, by law you cannot be forced into paying for something that happens in school hours. So if the team building happens in the day and not during hols, you can insist on your child attending without any payment if its not residential. If it is residential, they can only charge you for the meals and accommodation element. If it's happening in the hols, then tough luck, its a case of pay or don't go.

any payment must be stated as a vountary contribution, not an enforcable payment, with a proviso that if not enough students pay, the trip may not happen.

As for the John Lewis uniforms, that is outragous. You need to write to your chair of governors and insist that the school sources an alternative. We use a local manufacturer and tesco - and they both come with the logo embroidery. We are also happy for kids to use plain polo shirts in black or white or plain black trousers for those on a budget.

The school will word its letters such to make parents feel that the default is just to pay and lump it.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 1:55 pm 
Karma Queen / Cake Meisterin
Karma Queen / Cake Meisterin
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:02 pm
Posts: 6737
Location: North Yorkshire
I feel a bit frustrated that the school will not allow girls to wear any other skirts that are not bought from the school, I could get my girls skirts for about £4 from Tesco/Asda but have to spend £12 each at the school they're sent home if their jumpers, blazers and PE kit hasn't got a logo on it.

They certainly don't make it easy for parents, do people on benefits get help with uniform? Cus if I struggle god knows how they cope.

Alison


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 1:59 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
If mine were still that age I'd be shopping in Asda, and buying an embroidery kit! :wink:


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 2:17 pm 
Karma Queen / Cake Meisterin
Karma Queen / Cake Meisterin
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:02 pm
Posts: 6737
Location: North Yorkshire
We_are_Stevo wrote:
If mine were still that age I'd be shopping in Asda, and buying an embroidery kit! :wink:


If only I was any good with my hands :roll:

I don't know about now but when I was a kid and my parents full time job was their charity, they didn't have an official salary so we were entitled to free school meals and as such vouchers for free uniform, so each year off we went to the Co-op and got fitted. As to school dinners, I don't know if you can tell now, but when I was in upper school if you were on free meals you got paper slips and those on payed for meals got plastic tokens, so my brother refused to have free school meals as he couldn't stand the shame so my parents always paid for those.

Alison


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 2:47 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
Posts: 4756
Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
I know I'm so old we used to go into school two by two but our school dinners were just 60p a week! :o


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 2:52 pm 
Karma Queen / Cake Meisterin
Karma Queen / Cake Meisterin
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Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:02 pm
Posts: 6737
Location: North Yorkshire
We_are_Stevo wrote:
I know I'm so old we used to go into school two by two but our school dinners were just 60p a week! :o


Struth I can't remember what it cost when I was at school, just that I used to hide it in my step dad's minibus so I could have extra sweet money at the end of the week, starved at school though :roll:

Alison


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 3:53 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:19 am
Posts: 2096
Location: Sheffield, top city
like I said you need to petition the school head and the chair of governors for an alternative supplier. Governors have a duty and cannot ignore you. Write to them and tell them you want to see your query minuted. It works for the school too as we get a small commission on sales from Tesco. As a parent you order in store, so its really easy, no faff for the school, other than setting up. Ask to speak to the leader in charge of inclusion at school - helping students conform to uniform is part of their job. If the school are insisiting on one supplier only, then maybe questions should be asked, as to what the motive for this is. The tesco uniform we get is embroidered - tesco have a partnership with the school - the logo is held digitally and the print is on their standard ware.

Free school meal kids at my school are entitled to one set of uniform and a pe pack from pupil premium if they apply. Then, if you're not too proud there will be loads of unmarked stuff in lost property, which at end of term goes to the rag collectors. No need to tell your kids, take it home, wash it and they'll not know.


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