LFITokyo School board meeting Feedback (18/10/2018)
On October 2018 18th, first Board meeting of the school year 2018-19 was held. Your voting representatives were P.F. Vilquin, N. Di Costanzo – and R. Carraz attended as an observer.
Amendment of the Financial Regulation
After unanimously adopting the minutes of the previous Board meeting, the board discussed at length the proposals made by the Management of the school to modify the “Financial Regulations of the School”. The modifications mainly concerned the general expenses related to the canteen and the pedagogical out trips with nights (SPAN), in non-acronymic language, school trips.
For the canteen, it was proposed that “Any quarter started is due”, for the second point it was proposed that there is no canteen-discount and no refund in the presence of a surplus of cash. The change of internal regulations was presented to us as a simplification of the administrative procedures allowing the end of a case-by-case management, thus facilitating the work of the accounting departments. Indeed, despite 3 additional people in the administrative services, there is still need to work overtime to complete all the work necessary for the proper functioning of the School. This is due in part to the internalization of the payroll system (additional load, but less errors too), the work involved in the implementation of new software, etc.
For the first element, we put forward the cost for families arriving or leaving during the quarter. This is far from trivial, for example, for a primary school student leaving 1 month before the end of the term, it will represent 14,600 yen. We also pointed out the potential cost for a family arriving from the Japanese system in April. It was pointed out that the billing of the third quarter began in April not causing additional costs in this situation.
The discussion of the non-reimbursement of canteen costs during SPANs was further debated. The main problem in our eyes was “double billing”, the meal being paid for an unused service in the canteen and being included in the travel budget. The argument of an accounting simplification does not justify to us an extra cost that is difficult to justify in terms of equity. Moreover, in the event of any remaining payments (too much money), refunds will no longer be made, but the remaining amounts will be used for educational activities related to the trip.
Following the discussions, a new internal regulation was voted and taking into account the following amendments:
- The cost of meals in the canteen will be deducted from the SPAN restoration budgets (for those who are half boarders). This avoids double invoicing;
- Billing goes to the quarter. No more prorated refunds. Nevertheless, there will always be a reimbursement of the cost of the canteen after the 6th school day in case of illness, upon presentation of a medical certificate.
Your representatives voted against these modifications to the Financial Regulation, even though the amendments mean that fewer families are penalized.
School Management later discussed the difficulty of financially organizing school trips because of costs ceilings (50,000 Yen for travel to Japan and 100,000 Yen for travel abroad). It was decided that for the moment the travel budget limits remain unchanged, but this subject will certainly come back on the table, your representatives will remain vigilant. In addition, Bruno Valery mentioned that the AEFE and the National Union of School Sport (UNSS) have strengthened their partnership for the period 2017-2020 to facilitate the set up of sporting events within establishments in the ASIA zone. He also regretted the low participation of the LFIT in the sports events of the area.
In addition, following a remark by the CCIFJ representative, Mr. Armel CAHIERRE, the session chair, Mr. Valery, recommended to increase the financial participation in the plans of contribution of families whose tuition fees are paid by their company to replenish the solidarity fund. For information, the solidarity fund currently has about 2M yen in cash, including about 750,000 yen of donations from last year. This year, there is about 1.3M yen of pledges.
Finally, following a compliance with the Japanese accounting laws, a physical inventory of the LFIT library collection is required (approximately 27,000 books). Various strategies have been put forward to overcome this overload of work: overtime, trainees, hiring people on fixed-term contracts. This inventory will have to be done every year, but the biggest workload will be incurred in the first year.
We also asked the administration what is the number of students (per level and nationality) on the waiting list who had no opportunity to join LFITOkyo in September 2018 because of lack of space.
Answer: Waiting list on October 18th, 22 children.
- PS : 3 French / 2 other nationalities
- MS : 3 Japanese children
- GS : 4 Japanese children / 1 other nationality
- CP : 6 Japanese children
- CE1 : 0
- CE2 : 1 Japanese child / 1 other nationality
- CM1 : 1 Japanese child
- Secondaire : 0