‘Potter’ pay a problem

Payout poses Scots pupil problem

LONDON — The Scottish Highland Council is mulling a ruling on payments to child actors after the two schools that provided extras for the “Harry Potter” pics took a different stance on the matter: One kept the cash for a school fund, the other gave it to the kids involved.

This week it was learned that Donald Campbell, head of Lochaber High School in Fort William, Inverness-shire, ruled that the 14 of his pupils who were extras in “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” could not collect their paychecks from Warner Bros.

He decided that as the filming was during school hours it counted as work experience that cannot be paid under local council law. Instead, WB donated the $2,246 to a school fund to be spent on school trips and instruments.

Kinlochleven High topper Jim Sutherland took a more lenient line and allowed his pupils to keep their financial bounty. He even commended them for volunteering to get up at the crack of dawn on the weekend to take part in filming.

Bruce Robertson, minister for education, culture and sport, has written to the two head teachers and asked them to draft a proposal for appropriate legislation covering the region’s 187 primary and 29 secondary schools.

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