FCPS introduces fee for school laptops

In today’s technological age, computers, and other devices, have become an integral part of day to day learning in schools.

In today’s technological age, computers, and other devices, have become an integral part of day to day learning in schools.

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Earlier this school year, Fairfax County Public Schools announced that all high school students would be charged $50 for school laptops.
Invoices were officially sent two weeks ago, right after the first quarter ended, via My School Bucks, FCPS’ e-commerce platform.
As an update, students with reduced lunch were charged $25.
In addition, fees were waived for students with free lunch.
This fee, which is included in the county’s fiscal year 2020 approved budget, was created to ensure that the county is able to support each student’s need for a laptop with the same software.
It also helps by covering the costs of any damages or replacements that could be incurred by the students as the laptops are used.
While students will not be charged for incidental damage, action will be taken against repeated damage.
Students and their families are also financially responsible for any lost or stolen laptops or chargers.
Laptops cost $467, while laptops cost $28, totaling $495.
“I think that the fee is a good idea because it makes it easier for the county to provide laptops to everyone, which have become an essential part of our education nowadays,” senior Emily Shawish said.
“It allows for everyone, regardless of their financial status to have access to things like Google Docs or their email outside of the school, which only makes learning easier,” senior Isabella Steiner said.
In 2016, FCPS started giving out laptops as part of its FCPSOne program in an attempt to support teachers in the digital age.
A goal of the county is to ensure that all students in third grade and above have a school laptop.
The fee will be applied each school year, and is not set to increase or decrease any further at this time.
Parents are to pay the one-time annual fee using My School Bucks, as checks and in-person payments are not permitted.