A Masterton school is defending its stance over a mother who is not paying voluntary fees.
Karen Bock says she has been paying Rathkeale College's compulsory fee of $2,000 a year but cannot afford the voluntary $1,000-a-term fee.
She says the school's attitude has been aggressive and intimidating and she objects to its suggestion she mortgage her house to pay the voluntary fees.
However, Rathkeale College principal William Kersten says the school was concerned that while Mrs Bock was unable to pay the voluntary fee she insisted her son attend an optional school trip to Australia costing more than $3,000.
Mr Kersten says the school is aware Mrs Bock is not legally obliged to pay the fees, but questioned why she was happy to find the money for the trip to Australia and not the fees.
Mrs Brock says her parents paid for the trip.