header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather


 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
July 12
1900 - Pacific Telephone & Telegraph establishes Newhall exchange; SCV gets first phone [story]
old telephone


A state senate committee is poised to approve legislation Thursday that could profoundly impact the bottom lines of school districts throughout California.

Assembly Bill 165 would make it clear that the constitutional guarantee of a free education means school districts can’t charge fees for students to participate in school programs – whether it’s supplemental textbooks or football uniforms.

“Pupils shall not be charged fees, including security deposits, or be required to purchase materials or equipment, to participate in a class or an extracurricular activity,” the bill states.

The new law is a key component of a settlement agreement between the ACLU and the state. In 2010 the ACLU filed suit alleging that the state had failed to ensure educational equality because it had allowed its public school districts to require fees for access to certain educational services. As a result, the state “sanctions a dual school system which deliberately favors students from families of means over students from disadvantaged households,” the ACLU claimed in the lawsuit.

The William S. Hart Union High School District – which was not party to the lawsuit – is keeping a keen eye on the resulting legislation as it moves through Sacramento.

“(The settlement agreement) will result in actions affecting all California school districts,” said Hart District Superintendent Rob Challinor.

“For the Hart School District, we will certainly remain vigilant in helping to ensure that every family knows that a student’s participation in activities is not contingent upon fundraising or the payment of fees,” he said.

Under the new law, that vigilance would extend to officially sanctioned booster clubs on each school campus. The school district would have to ensure that students are not denied access to programs if they fail to sell enough chocolate bars or magazine subscriptions.

It also extends to anyone acting on a school’s behalf, and to required materials even if they aren’t purchased from the school and the administration doesn’t know about it. For instance, according to the Senate analysis of the bill, it applies even if “an athletics coach required pupils to purchase team uniforms – which would be illegal – (and the school district) never received any money.”

Further, the bill prohibits school districts from charging or otherwise requiring students to spend money, including a security deposit, for “a lock, locker, book, class apparatus, musical instrument, uniform, or other materials or equipment.”

The bill would require school superintendents to “determine whether an unlawful pupil fee has been or is being charged in the current fiscal year,” and establishes a formal complaint procedure for students wrongfully charged.

If it’s determined that an illegal fee has been imposed, the school district would have to reimburse the money – even if the district wasn’t the recipient. The legislative analysis acknowledges that the reimbursement would be “actually a new cost” to the school district in the team-uniform example.

Booster club fundraisers are vital to the success of programs in the Santa Clarita Valley, and the Hart District is determined to keep them going.

“The harsh reality of public education funding cuts and mounting operational costs compel us to identify alternative ways that we can allow parents to contribute to their child’s education,” Challinor said. “The simple truth is that offering a full spectrum of comprehensive programs including music, arts, dance, athletics, cheerleading, yearbook, photography, theatre, clubs and associations extends beyond the limited funds that any district receives from the state.

“We are resolved in our commitment to allow parents and community members to continue supporting programs that they find essential to their student’s success in school, and student participation is not and will never be contingent upon donations,” he said.

The agreement between the ACLU and the state also called for the drafting of new regulations, and until those regulations are handed down from Sacramento, the Hart District can’t know what specific action it should take, Challinor said.

“Parents remain able to collect donations on a voluntary basis to support education enrichment programs,” he said. “Every student is provided full access to district programs and activities. Participation will never be based on ability to pay.”

AB 165 passed the state Assembly on a 50-17 vote June 2. It’s set for a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing Thursday.

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

0 Comments

You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


LOCAL SCHOOL LINKS
Related Content
LATEST SCHOOL NEWS
Monday, Jul 8, 2024
The Castaic Union School District Governing Board will hold its regular meeting Thursday, July 11, at 6 p.m.
Saturday, Jul 6, 2024
Registration for the city of Santa Clarita Newhall and Canyon Country Community Centers After School Programs will begin on Tuesday, July 16 at 10 a.m.
Wednesday, Jul 3, 2024
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond today applauded the passage of AB 1955,  Support Academic Futures and Educators for Today’s Youth Act (SAFETY Act).
Tuesday, Jul 2, 2024
The Hello Auto Group has announced its third annual Back-to-School Backpack Drive. This year, the Hello Auto Group will partner with three Santa Clarita Valley school districts, Sulphur Springs Union School District, Newhall School District and Castaic Union School District, to support students preparing for the upcoming school year.
Monday, Jul 1, 2024
Saugus High School Instrumental Music Booster Club is inviting the community to help those in need with its Clothes for Cash campaign beginning Saturday, July 6, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
Child & Family Center will present its annual Purple Walk Domestic Violence Awareness 5K on Saturday, Oct. 12 from 8-11 a.m.
Oct. 12: Child & Family Center Purple Walk Domestic Violence Awareness 5K
The Placerita Canyon Nature Center Associates will present the monthly Community Nature Education Series program on Sunday, July 21 at 2 p.m.
July 21: Placerita Canyon Community Nature Education Series
A portion of the parking lot at Santa Clarita City Hall is closed due to the installation of solar panels to enhance energy efficiency.
Visitor Parking at City Hall Relocated
The city of Santa Clarita has shared the results of the 2024 Public Opinion Poll. Results reveal high levels of community satisfaction and highlight the key issues that matter most to residents.
Santa Clarita 2024 Public Opinion Poll Highlights
The city of Santa Clarita annual Road Rehab Program has begun and motorists are advised that overlay work will continue on Whites Canyon Road between Delight Street and Soledad Canyon Road.
Road Rehab Continues on Whites Canyon Road
Santa Clarita Shakespeare will present a free production of the William Shakespeare comedy "All's Well That Ends Well" at the Newhall Family Theatre Aug. 2-4.
Aug. 2-4: Free Shakespeare ‘All Well That Ends Well’
The MAIN in Old Town Newhall will present the Santa Clarita Shakespeare Festival annual summer production which includes “An Evening of Absurdity” and “Papá está en la Atlántida” (“Our Dad is in Atlantis”).
Santa Clarita Shakespeare Festival at The MAIN
Timothy Andrew Nemeckay, 64, of Park City, Utah, was sentenced on July 10 to 12 months and one day imprisonment, and 24 months supervised release. In September 2023, Nemeckay admitted to wire fraud, which involved misappropriating approximately $1.7 million from investors investing in the development of a brewery and restaurant in Park City, Utah and Santa Clarita.
Fraudster Solicited Funds for Fake Santa Clarita Brewery
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works has issued a traffic advisory for residents of Stevenson Ranch.
Traffic Advisory: Road Construction in Stevenson Ranch
The Valley Industry Association will host its annual CEO Forum on Friday, Aug. 23, 8:30-11 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Valencia. Cost to attend is $50 for VIA members and $60 for non-members.
Aug 23: VIA to Host CEO Forum
The City of Santa Clarita has announced the upcoming exhibition, “Symphony of Colors,” featuring the works of Santa Clarita Valley contemporary impressionist artist Zony Gordon.
Zony Gordon Art Exhibit at Old Town Newhall Library
1900 - Pacific Telephone & Telegraph establishes Newhall exchange; SCV gets first phone [story]
old telephone
After meeting in closed session on Wednesday, July 10, the Santa Clarita Community College District Board of Trustees announced its unanimous decision to place Chancellor Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook on administrative leave, effective Monday, July 15.
Dianne Van Hook Placed on Administrative Leave
Santa Clarita is known, not only for its scenic open spaces and family-friendly community, but also for its commitment to nurturing the arts and fostering a thriving, dynamic environment where creativity can flourish.
Bill Miranda | Creativity in Every Corner
Join the Valley Industry Association Friday, Aug. 2, from 11:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., where an update on the Valencia Town Center will be presented.
Aug. 2: VIA Hosting Valencia Town Center Update
Calling all dog lovers! The 2024 Santa Clarita Valley Walk to End Alzheimer's announced its search for a dog mascot.
Walk to End Alzheimer’s Announces Dog Mascot Contest
Sagittarius Ponderosa, written by MJ Kaufman and directed by Skylar Reede, will begin its run at The MAIN beginning Aug. 23 to Sept. 1.
‘Sagittarius Ponderosa’ Coming to The MAIN
Nicole Miller was recently awarded Zontian of the Year 2024 at Zonta Club of Santa Clarita Valley’s Installation of Officers.
Nicole Miller Named 2024 Zontian of the Year
Have you ever wanted to paint the surface of an ice rink? Now’s your chance!
Register Now for The Cube’s ‘Paint the Ice’ Event
The number of young people experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles County is steadily persisting, and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors are tackling the problem head on.  
Supes Boost Housing Support for Youth Aging Out of Foster Care
2007 - Moore's sub sandwich shop, abandoned 2 years earlier, demolished as derelict building; now partially Newhall roundabout [story]
Moores sub shop
Premier Theatrical Productions have announced a limited engagement of the critically acclaimed musical, “The Lincolns of Springfield,” at the Colony Theater in the Burbank Town Center.
July 12-14: ‘The Lincolns of Springfield’ at Colony Theatre
Interested in learning more about the quality of water in the Santa Clarita Valley? Don’t miss an opportunity to engage with an SCV Water expert and dive deeper into a crucial topic during the upcoming “Water Matters” webinar: Exploring the 2024 Consumer Confidence Report and Addressing Water Quality in the SCV.
July 24: ‘Water Matters’ Webinar to Explore Water Quality in SCV
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health cautions residents who are planning to visit the below Los Angeles County beaches to avoid swimming, surfing, and playing in ocean waters:
Ocean Water Warning for July 10
SCVNews.com