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Lafayette High School backpedals after asking parents for 'Chromebook fee'

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Posted at 2:23 PM, Sep 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-24 14:23:23-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Lafayette High School Principal Bryne Jacobs told parents in an email Thursday morning they no longer had to pay a "Chromebook fee" that the school notified parents about on Wednesday saying they needed to pay.

The Wednesday email read, in part:

In an effort to maintain open lines of communication between home and school, here is an important message from Fayette County Public Schools. Good afternoon Lafayette Families! We are in the process of mailing our student fee statements. Please note that you can also view the fees on your Infinite Campus Parent Portal. You will notice a Chromebook fee of $25.00. All students will be given a Chromebook (if they have not yet received one) as soon as the district receives them (we are hopeful this will be by early/mid-October). If your student is in an art class, you will also notice a fee for that class. Please note that additional art supplies will be distributed throughout the year.

Several parents told LEX 18 they were asked to pay for Chromebooks their students do not yet have and asked the school if they could wait to send the payment until thier child's Chromebook arrived.

Jacobs' email Thursday morning read, in part, "We have since learned that our school district will be covering the cost of all repairs and replacements of these devices moving forward. This is great news and we have removed this charge from everyone’s fee statements..."

According to Fayette County Public Schools, Lafayette High School became a one-to-one Chromebook school out of necessity with the 2020-21 school year starting online in the fall.

FCPS said the district started paying for all the repairs and replacements of the necessary one-to-one technology at Lafayette High School when the school became a one-to-one Chromebook school in 2020 so the district is not sure why the school asked their parents to pay the $25 fee.

The district of about 41,000 students confirmed Thursday that 37,000 Chromebooks have been delivered and another 10,000 are ordered and expected in October. The district also said many families opted out of picking one up as they already had sufficient technology at home.