02-12-2013 Regular School Board Meeting
Agenda Item #19


Title
Fee for Submission of Choice and Out of Area Applications

Discussion

The charging of a fee for the submission of choice and out of area applications is one of the identified strategies to generate $200,000 (original goal was $300,000) revenue for the District.  Senior staff, principals, and other key district personnel have engaged in meaningful discussion regarding which choice programs to include in the application fee process, the fee cost, and the selection of an organization to collect the fees.

The original recommendation included charging a $20.00 fee for the collection of an estimated 15,000 choice and out of area applications.  Moreover, the original proposal included the collection of fees for all choice programs, including CTE Choice. 

The District's graduation process requires students to complete an individualized program of study which includes a minimum of three (3) credits in one of the following prior to graduation:

  • Approved Dual Enrollment, Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), Advanced International Certification (AICE), approved Honors courses (3 credits in any combination); or
  • Career & Technical Education Program of Study (3 or more credits to complete a sequential career and technical education program resulting in a credential endorsed by a national, state, or local industry). 

Upon further review and discussion of the graduation requirement, staff believes that requiring a student participating in a CTE program to pay the application fee could potentially impact his/her graduation.  Therefore, the District is modifying the original recommendation to not include charging students for participating in CTE Choice programs at their zoned school.  However, a student wishing to participate in a CTE Choice program at a school other than his/her zoned school, will be required to complete a CTE Choice application (current practice) and pay the designated fee.  A student has the opportunity to participate in Honors courses and meet the graduation requirement if he/she do not wish to participate in a program that requires an application fee. 

The recommendation has been modified to charge a $30.00 fee for the applications listed below.  As a consequence of not charging an application fee for students participating in CTE programs at their zoned schools, staff now believes the district will collect an estimated 11,000 applications.

Staff is recommending to contract with Scribbles Software, Inc., for the online collection of the out of area and choice application fees.  Scribbles offers a multiple-level application approval process, allowing the out of area application process to become completely automated.  The company incorporates a tracking system for parents to track the application process; therefore, minimizing phone calls to the schools and the Office of School Choice.  Additionally, parents will be sent notification via email or text regarding the final approval/denial of an out of area request by the Director of School Choice, eliminating the need for school staff to communicate to parents.  Please refer to the attached document for additional details.



Recommendation

Approve a $30.00 fee for the collection of the following applications (New and Renewal):

  • All Out of Area Applications
  • All Choice School Applications
  • AICE/IB Applications - Students Applying to Receive Distinguished Diploma
  • CTE Choice Applications - Students Not Zoned for School Where Choice Program is Offered

Grant permission for the Director of School Choice to negotiate a contract with Scribbles Software, Inc., to implement a paperless out of area process, as well as, the collection of the out of area and choice application fees on line (at no cost to the District).  The proposed contract agreement has been reviewed and approved by Harold Bistline, district attorney.

 



Meeting Date(s)
Information - 1/22/2013
Consent after Information2/12/2013

Authority for Action
1001.42, F.S.

Involves Expenditure of Funds Directly in the Classroom
No

Source of Funding
Agenda Item will not Require the Expenditure of Funds

FY
Amount
Budgeted
Fund
Cost Center
Project
Function
Object
Program

Contact

Vicki Mace, Director of School Choice

321-633-1000, Ext. 395




Attachment:  Recommendation - Scribbles Modified.pdf