Last week, KATC Investigates began looking into fees charges by Lafayette Parish public schools.
One of the things we learned was that all class fees must be spent on "consumables," or supplies that students use up during the year. The fees can’t be spent on things like computers or printers, but on things like crayons, paper, workbooks, etc.
Another thing we learned: Any money left unspent at the end of the school year is transferred from the teacher’s account into the school’s general fund.
So our next question was: How much are we talking about?
Turns out, it was a lot. At our request, Lafayette school officials looked at how much in unspent class fees were transferred into each school’s general fund after the last school year.
LPSS officials weren’t happy with what they found.
"In light of what we’ve seen, I think the directors and the district are going to work more closely with those principals to make sure that, probably, cut back on the fees that are collected and those of you that are collecting fees that money needs to be spent in a timely manner so the kids are seeing the benefit of it," said Joe Craig, Chief Administrative Officer for LPSS.
Here’s a chart showing that breakdown, by school: