Yes. Public schools can fundraise. School districts are legally allowed to request voluntary donations and engage in fundraising activities and programs. Most successful fundraising campaigns are run by a parent-teacher organization (PTO) or parent-teacher association (PTA). An entire school or individual group, including classes, sports teams, or clubs, may participate in fundraising.
During the pandemic, Boosterthon helped public schools profit $51 million!
The most successful school fundraisers involve the whole community and extended families. Many school fundraising bodies partner with school fundraising companies like Booster to provide the expertise, infrastructure, and planning needed to kick off a great fundraiser and extend to a broader audience.
With a wider reach, fundraising is best done through crowd-sourcing initiatives. For example, simple ideas like car washes and bake sales, while fun, tend to bring in minimal funding. In contrast, more significant initiatives like a Boosterthon fun run can fund an entire annual PTA/PTO budget because it's an event-worthy occasion and the powerful fundraising platform used allows asking for donations to go much further than the next door neighbor.
As the name implies, school fundraising is the practice of raising money to supplement a school's budget. Fundraising activities are typically organized by volunteer groups such as PTAs and booster clubs and can range from product sales to community events to calls for direct donations. Schools use these funds to meet any needs not covered by the school's budget, including supplies and equipment, enrichment programs, extracurricular activities, and more.
Unfortunately, schools in the U.S. are vastly underfunded. Budget cuts after the Great Recession hit schools hard, and the trend has only continued. The truth is, most elementary and secondary schools today do not have enough funds to provide the educational experiences their students need.
In light of this situation, school fundraising has become one of the most important ways to support a range of student needs, including:
- Enrichment programs
- Extracurricular activities
- The purchase of supplies and equipment
- Upgrades to school facilities
Boosterthon’s fees are based on the level of service each school chooses for their fundraiser. The more service they select, such as the Shared Service and Full Service offerings, the higher the percentage of fees. This is due to the fact that these service levels require a larger Boosterthon team, and more equipment and fundraising resources.
Booster has five fundraising levels schools can choose from - starting as low as 7%, however with Booster’s new Perks Program, schools choosing to work with Booster can receive additional discounts and a starting percentage of 5% for schools that opt for more of a DIY option and simply need a fundraising software.
To understand specifics, please reach out to a local Boosterthon leader.
All donations go straight into the school's merchant account when a school chooses to organize a Boosterthon fundraiser. This ensures that the money generated goes entirely to the school. Schools will pay an upfront base cost based on the contract (fee determined by the type of fundraising support they select). The remaining fees are calculated at the end of the fundraiser based on the service level the school selected from the Boosterthon team.
Many school communities find their school families are very busy. Securing enough volunteers to run a fundraiser can be very challenging for many schools. Schools choosing to have the Boosterthon team join them for a portion of or all of their 7-day fundraiser benefit from having dedicated individuals to run their program. With the Booster team comes an added level of spirit throughout the entire school during the fundraiser as well as prizes, proven resources, and full access to the Booster Tech fundraising software. The Boosterthon team brings a level of enthusiasm and fun to the school community that volunteers alone often say they can't match.
To understand specifics, please reach out to a local Boosterthon leader.
The Boosterthon fun run fundraiser is a multi-day event aiming to bring fitness and character to schools throughout the country while also raising money. Booster has spent the last 20 years developing its signature Boosterthon program. It now provides a variety of event day alternatives such as Dance Fit, Glow Run, Color Run, and Obstacle Run, in addition to its world-class fun run. Boosterthon also provides a variety of service levels, from a simple fundraising platform for their own DIY fun run to a full service, a team-based on-campus fundraiser that creates significant revenue for the school and even greater memories for the students, teachers, staff, and parents!
PTO/As raise funds to assist schools with expenses that may not be covered by government funding. For example, these organizations frequently generate funds for PE or band equipment, STEM laboratories, playgrounds, and other needs.
Parent clubs and associations at schools raise money in a number of ways, including fun runs, dance-a-thons, spirit wear sales, direct give fundraisers, and more, to assist schools in purchasing goods that aren't usually covered by government funding. These groups frequently generate funds for PE or band equipment, as well as STEM laboratories. Some organizations also fundraise for educational field trips, school supplies, teacher recognition, outdoor classrooms, new technology, and other causes.
Virtual fundraising became a real necessity during 2020, but even when on-campus events are possible, the ability to fundraise remotely has allowed schools to raise more funds in new ways. School fundraising software that features virtual fundraising capabilities offers a higher level of flexibility and customizability than traditional types of fundraisers.
Please visit our virtual fundraising page to see the possibilities.
Boosterthon has a reputation for being a profitable school fundraiser. Boosterthon has helped thousands of schools collect more than $400 million for vital supplies in the previous 19 years, including $51 million during the COVID-19 pandemic. Inquire about Boosterthon's Full-Service offering for schools wanting to cover their whole budget with a single event.
Depending on the type of fundraiser chosen, school profits will vary. While bake sales and car washes can help make money, professional fundraisers such as Boosterthon can help schools finance their whole budget with just one campaign. Many schools choose to go big one time a year with a Boosterthon event vs. asking their school families to continually give through smaller fundraisers all year long.
Whether you're hosting your fundraiser on your own or outsourcing it completely - fundraisers cost money to host. All fundraisers have fees associated. If you're profiting more than 50% on your fundraiser, you're doing really well! But the common expectation is 30-50% after expenses, be they baked goods or professional services.
With a product sale fundraiser, your school will have to pay for the items, shipping, and other expenses, and worse yet, your students will receive no additional benefit from the campaign. There are typically no fitness, character development, school spirit, or other elements weaved into the fundraiser to make it meaningful, memorable and encourage them to include their family in meaningful ways. Multi-day event-based fundraisers, like Boosterthon, focus on community-driven fundraising where your contributors are supporting their chosen student in an 7-day experience that will give them memories to last a lifetime, rather than buying a roll of wrapping paper that will be forgotten in the closet for years or perhaps thrown away.
Reach out to a local Boosterthon leader and learn more about our fundraising services.