A new online payment system is eliminating the need for coins and paper money in nearly all aspects of school life throughout Chinook’s Edge School Division.
The division for the past two years has accepted school fee payments online, and is now expanding its online payment services to include field trips, lunches and other programs and activities.
The move will make life easier for both parents and staff, according to division assistant treasurer Alex Schultz.
“The parents who have signed up for this option have typically loved it, and the schools that have embraced the online payment system have alleviated a great deal of distraction for staff,” he noted in a release.
“From school registration fees to hot lunches and field trips, online services is simply what busy families have come to expect from a professional organization.”
The system will be introduced to Chinook’s Edge schools in phases. Office staff will become fully trained and prepared for its implementation.
École Steffie Woima School in Sylvan Lake was one of the first schools to get a glimpse of the system in action, and it’s been embraced by everyone who’s used it so far.
Jodi Hinshaw, administrative support at the school, said that the system “literally reduces hours of unnecessary work,” allowing school staff to allocate their time in a more effective manner.
Collecting, separating and tracking hot lunch forms is just one of many time-consuming tasks that’s been eliminated with the new system in place.
In completing her teaching practicum at École Fox Run School, Hinshaw has become aware of the limited time teachers have for dealing with tasks such as counting coins.
Many people, she noted, have begun to expect to deal with such issues online now anyway.
“Parents appreciate that we provide the service … and our students aren’t tasked with the responsibility of lugging cash around, so the benefits are for everyone, and they’re fantastic,” she said in a release.
She added the school even has a computer on site for parents to use to make payments on.