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PE Schools Waive Fee

PRINCE EDWARD -Residents from outside of the Prince Edward County sending their children to the County's public schools paid a non-resident tuition rate of $2,428.

The figure is adjusted annually to reflect the County's local contribution for educating a child, but the adjustment this year is going down. Way down.

Zero, actually.

School board members met to approve their budget May 16, but also used the occasion to discuss out-of-county tuition and, while initially contemplating a $1,000 annual fee, that discussion moved to $750 and, eventually, the board opted to waive it altogether for the coming school year.

“…We have a very small number of students who are currently paying tuition and, if we were reduce the rate to…I've sug-gested a thousand dollars instead of $2,400-it might entice a few more people,” Division Superintendent Dr. David Smith commented at the May 16 school board meeting.

That would help increase the school's Average Daily Membership (ADM)-a figure used in factoring state funding. Or about $5,400 per student.

“There are no guarantees and there's no way to say that we can project a revenue increase, but it may help offset some of our losses,” Dr. Smith advised.

Comparison of out-of-county rates range across the board: Amelia has a $1,500 rate, Appomattox $750, Buckingham $500, Cumberland $2,200, and Nottoway $2,024. Neighboring Charlotte County had a $500 rate, but they, too, opted to waive it for the coming school year.

Currently, Dr. Smith offered (with the school year winding down) there were four such students; there were seven the previ-ous year.

Part of the history of the rate, school board member Dr. Lawrence Varner had noted in an earlier meeting, is that the school was at capacity. They are no longer brimming over, he cited