ACLU California Affiliates Announce Major Settlement in School Fees Case

A settlement with the State of California that will establish a comprehensive monitoring and enforcement system to ensure school districts do not unlawfully charge fees to students for educational activities was announced by the three California ACLU affiliates today.

The settlement, which requires court approval, is contingent on enactment of legislation that would empower students and parents to use the existing Williams Uniform Complaint Process to identify, and receive reimbursement for illegal school fees and that would amend the annual independent audits of school districts to determine if schools collected illegal fees.

“This is a precedent-setting agreement, that puts an end once and for all to the ‘pay to learn’ system,” said David Blair-Loy, legal director of the San Diego ACLU. “Now all school districts in the state will have clarity about the importance of all students having an equal opportunity to achieve their dreams , no matter what their families’ financial circumstances are.”

“The ACLU thanks Governor Schwarzenegger, Secretary of Education Bonnie Reiss and the state board of education for facilitating a quick resolution of this case,” said Kevin Keenan, executive director of the San Diego ACLU. “Building on the historic 2004 /wp-content/uploads/article/school fees settlement agreement.pdf”>school fees settlement agreement.pdf