Should all fundraising go to the district rather than an individual school?

Michele - posted on 11/10/2011 ( 12 moms have responded )

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http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/201...

As parents are asked for more and more help via fundraising, different schools have more available funds. Schools that have wealthier parents are able to fund more things (e.g. art and music). Santa Monica/Malibu would change the rules so that all funds raised by an individual school would go to a central educational foundation that would be used for all schools in the district.
Would you donate as much time and money to fundraisers if the money was not going to your child's school?

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[deleted account]

I doubt it, but I'm not sure. I'd like to say yes, I would, but I honestly don't think I would.
Here's the thing. I volunteer to make MY child's education better. I feel my presence in his school benefits him directly. I do volunteer for community projects that do not impact our family directly, but the work I do for the school is not one of them--The only reason I volunteer at the school is to benefit J directly, it's something I do just for him.

Plus, I think the whole schools with wealthier parents can raise more $$ is a bit off. Most of our money comes form partnerships with local businesses, not the parents. We have one fundraiser where the kids have to sell stuff--that would certainly do better in more affluent schools, but we are considered one of those schools and we get less than 5% of our income from that fundraiser. 5% comes from PTO membership purchases, and the Fall Carnival. The other 90+% comes from business partnerships, and those businesses are located all over town, not just in our school radius, so a less affluent school would have those same opportunities, right?

Sherri - posted on 11/10/2011

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Nope I wouldn't if it wasn't going directly to my child's school or our school district. I wouldn't volunteer probably at all.

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[deleted account]

i think it would be better if they did that. like you said, schools with richer parents will raise more funds and have a better education than schools with lower incomes and i think that in public schools all kids should have access to the same quality of education regardless of income level. i would still participate the same

Jeannette - posted on 11/11/2011

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Michele, with almost being done, and having lived in several different school districts, I think schools raising funds should be able to keep the money.
That does not mean I agree with how state/federal dollars are dispersed, but the fundraising bit - whoever raises it should keep it.
The poorer districts, and the one we currently live in is, should be allotted more from the state for each child; even if that means sending less to the richer districts.

Becky - posted on 11/11/2011

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I was going to suggest the same thing Sharon did. Rather than taking money individual schools have raised, the districts should do separate fundraisers for funds to be distributed among all the schools.

Michele - posted on 11/11/2011

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No kidding, Sharon! I have been doing school fundraisers for 10 years and the laws will sometimes change in the middle of your planning cycle. We do have a district wide fundraising organization. They do not do as well as the individual schools, usually, because of parent support for indidvidual schools. As far as distribution for the district foundation, they do teacher grants, and fund the music program, mostly. They also have funded certain initiatives that are for the high school level (technology related programs). If they required that 30% of the funds from our fundraisers go to them for their board to decie how to spend, I don't think it would go over very well.
@Marina, have you checked out www.ptotoday.com? Great ideas there!

[deleted account]

Fundraising is designed for a particular school in order to make purchases for a particular site level decision like playground equipment, Smart Boards, field trips, new gym equipment, etc. It would be a great decision if the Districts hold s District-level fundraiser that could be equally distributed among each school, however then you run into the red-tape of fstate school fundrasing laws. And yes, something I learned in my School Finance course! Every state has school fundraising laws!

Amanda - posted on 11/11/2011

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I am a part of the PTA, I say fund raises should stay in the school. My children are in a poorer area, and our fundraising goes towards buying Smart Boards for each class room. These boards run around 5-7K, the last thing I would want to happen is the school board say these boards are theirs because we used a district fundraising and remove them from our school.



We have been buying these boards for 3 years now, and have 7 of them. The school board has no rights to the boards nor do any other school. When my children are grown and left the school, it will still have these boards for many more children to learn from them.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 11/11/2011

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This is my first year being a part of a school as a parent. My son is in Kinder, and I am the leader of the fundraising team. I can see why this would be helpful to the schools in the poverty level, but man.....I am working my ass off. I would not want this money going to another school. I have been to my sisters kids school (very private exclusive and RICH to boot) they put on INCREDIBLE fundraisers. Infact, we cannot replicate even one of them because of the funds they have available. They work very hard to raise the money, and no I don't think because 95% of the parents are extremely wealthy that my sons school has a right to take money from all the hard work they have done to raise for their own school.

This is literally the very first year my son's school is open. I am on the ground floor of shaping the fundraising team. It is pretty cool.

Tracey - posted on 11/11/2011

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The funds should go to individual schools, but the better off schools should be encouraged to share facilities

Michele - posted on 11/10/2011

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For us, the irony is that almost 70% of the kids at the elementary school my older 2 attended are free/reduced lunch and a little over 50% are english language learners. We have 3 major fundraisers annually - walkathon, bulb sales (most years), and a fiesta (carnival). Plus we have a biennial auction. I don't think the 3 major fundraisers would do as well if the $$ were going to the district rather than: field trips, after school enrichment, etc. for our school. And I am pretty sure that no one would go to the trouble of putting on the wine auction. We usually make $80,000 on the auction, $15,000 on walkathon, $5000 on bulb sales, and $5000 on the fiesta. Even if you combined the fundraising of all local elementary schools and split it, we would probably be worse off.

[deleted account]

Okay, I posted before having read the article. Now I've read it, and I do have to say that if the disparities in our city were as big as they are there, then yes, I would definitely share funds with the other schools.

The schools around here are pretty much even, for the most part anyway, some are better than others, but no matter where you go, you are going to get a good education, full Arts curriculum, and such. If I knew schools here were having to give up Arts, manage with crappy libraries, or didn't have the funds to properly staff the building, then obviously, I think fundraising should be shared. I was just not aware that disparities were that big.

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