School owed £4,000 by parents considers bailiffs

The Lakeside Community Primary School in Alvaston is considering calling in bailiffs after it worked out that parents owed around £4,000 collectively in outstanding fees.

The fees were for things such as lunch money, after school and breakfast clubs and school library fines. Head teacher Simon Emsley said that although the council advises schools to turn children away at the dinner hall or after school clubs if they have outstanding payments, this was a very hard thing to do.

“People think because it’s school, it’s not real money,” he added. “Bailiffs are a possibility – it’s very difficult but it’s one of the avenues we’re looking down.

“I’ve got some cracking staff who phone people [who owe money] or visit houses, and the vast majority of parents and carers who bring children to our school are incredibly supportive and helpful.”

 A council spokesman said that it is up to each school individually to decide how they collect owed money, although the council will send out an invoice if the debt reaches £27 for any one child.

“Should payment still not be made we advise the school not to serve any further meals without receiving prior payment. “It is important that dinner money is collected as non-payment will have a knock-on effect for every child in Derbyshire,” he said.

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