The Broad General Education (S1-S3) and Curriculum Contributions
At Mackie Academy, and in Scottish Education, pupils are given a wide range of subjects to gain practical learning experiences from. For some of these experiences there are additional costs associated with the subjects which we, as a school, try to budget for and absorb in our day-to-day running. In certain subject areas – Art and Design, Design Technology and Home Economics – these costs are significant.
In 2020-21 we have faced the additional challenge of providing these experiences and that is why we have not written to you about curriculum contributions before now. We recognise that we all find ourselves in extraordinary circumstances and that many families are facing significant pressures currently.
It has always been standard practice within Aberdeenshire secondary schools to ask parents to contribute towards the cost of materials to support these curricular areas. In previous years we have detailed individual costs but recognise that this has often been confusing for parents. This year, we have tried to simplify matters across the Broad General Education (S1 to S3) by standardising the charge for all pupils given that in S1 and S2 pupils do the same subjects and in S3, by the nature of the course choices, all pupils do at least one of these practical subjects areas.
For the remainder of this academic year we are asking parents to consider a donation of £20 per child in S1, S2 and S3. This one payment covers all courses that your child takes in their year of study.
Aberdeenshire Council has a secure and easy way of making payments to Mackie Academy called IPay Impact, which you will be familiar with if your child currently has lunch in our school canteen or you may have used it in previous years. This is the easiest and most secure way that parents can make payments for their child. Given the current Covid-19 restrictions this is the school’s preferred method of payment for recoveries. If you cannot make use of this system for any reason please contact the school office on 01569 690550 for advice.
If you are not registered with IPay Impact a video guide to the registration process is available online at https://youtu.be/YwH9_3n7O4I and you can access the payment system on Aberdeenshire Council’s website at: https://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/pay/.
Should you have any queries or issues with registering for this system please contact the helpline on 03456 081202. Once logged in you will find the payment amount for your child that is requested as a donation.
As a school we recognise that family pressures may not make it possible for you to donate at this time or you may wish to spread those payments. Therefore, you can make your donation any time between now and the end of March 2021. You can pay the full amount now or you can spread your payments over this period.
We will review the situation in the early part of March 2021 and will send a reminder email at that time but nothing more.
The Senior Phase (S4-S6) and Curriculum Contributions
In the Senior Phase pupils choose their subjects and, in some cases, there is a significant physical resource input for those subjects. You can find a list of those subjects here. If your child is currently studying any of these subjects you will receive an individual letter regarding this and the curriculum contribution. As with the BGE curriculum contribution we, as a school, appreciate the times that we find ourselves in and all of the information above regarding payment stands for Senior Phase courses too.
Free School Meals
Please note that if your child is in receipt of Free School Meals you will not be asked to make a curriculum contribution.