JJE - Fundraising

Emery County School District

Policy: JJE - Fundraising

Date Adopted: 11 December 1997

Current Review / Revision: 4 December 2013


This policy is to establish District procedures governing the initiation, authorization, and review of all fundraising activities. This policy is intended to create practices that adequately safeguard public funds, provide for accountability, and ensure compliance with State and Federal laws.

The Board of Education recognizes the many demands on the limited financial resources of the School District and that occasionally, alternate funding sources must be sought in order to meet the growing needs of schools and school- sponsored organizations, and to provide expanded opportunities for students. The Board of Education also desires to protect students, parents, teachers, and school administrators from over-commercialization and fundraising efforts that are coercive and disruptive to the educational process, threatening to the health and welfare of students, or lacking in educational merit.

The Board encourages schools and school-sponsored organizations to seek alternative funding sources through grant- writing, community and business partnerships, etc. and to limit as much as possible fundraising activities involving students.


This policy applies to all District administrators, licensed educators, staff members, students, organizations, volunteers and individuals who initiate, authorize, or participate in fundraising events or activities for school sponsored events.

It is expected that in all dealings, employees will act ethically and consistent with District ethics policies, the Utah Educator Standards, the Public Officers and Employees Ethics Act, and State procurement law.

Definitions and Statements

  1. "Public funds" are money, funds, and accounts, regardless of the source from which the funds are derived, that are owned, held, or administered by the District.

  2. Fundraising is permitted within the District to allow schools to raise additional funds to supplement school- sponsored academic and co-curricular programs.

  3. The District recognizes that fundraising efforts, donations, and public support vary among schools. The District is committed to appropriate distribution of unrestricted funds and the management of fundraising to ensure that the educational opportunities of all students are equal and fair.

  4. The District is committed to principles of gender equity and compliance with Title IX guidance. The District commits to use all facilities, unrestricted gifts and other available funds in harmony with these principles. The District reserves the right to decline or restrict donations, gifts, and fundraising proceeds, including those that

    might result in gender inequity or a violation of Title IX. Fundraising opportunities should be equitable for all students, comply with Title IX, and be in harmony with Article X of the Utah Constitution.

  5. "School-Sponsored" means activities, fundraising events, clubs, camps, clinics, programs, sports, etc., or events or activities that are authorized by the District or individual schools that support schools or authorized curricular school clubs, activities, sports, classes or programs, and also satisfy one or more of the following criteria. The activity:

    1. Is managed or supervised by the District or a School, or District or School employee.

    2. Uses the District or School's facilities, equipment, or other resources.

    3. Is supported or subsidized, more than inconsequently, by public funds, including the School's activity funds or minimum school program dollars.

    4. Does not include non-curricular clubs specifically authorized and meeting all criteria of Utah Code 53A-11-1205 through 1208.

  6. Each school will review all planned camps, clinics, activities, and fundraisers and determine those designated as school- sponsored. Those not designated as school-sponsored will follow the non-school-sponsored criteria in Section F of this policy.

  7. Properly approved school-sponsored activities may:

    1. Use the school's name, facilities, and equipment.

    2. Utilize District employees and other resources to supervise, promote, and otherwise staff the activity or fundraiser.

    3. Be insured under the District's risk management policy

  8. All monies raised through fundraisers for school-sponsored activities are considered public funds. The District and individual schools are ultimately responsible for the expenditure and allocation of all monies collected and expended through school-sponsored fundraising.

    1. The collection of money associated with fundraisers for school-sponsored activities will comply with the District cash receipting policy.

    2. The expenditure of any public funds associated with fundraisers for school-sponsored activities will comply with the District cash disbursement policy.

Approval and Supervision of School-Sponsored Fundraising Activities

  1. Fundraising at the school level shall be approved in writing, prior to the activity.

    1. Principals may approve fundraisers where the expectation is to earn up to $2,500.

    2. Fundraisers expecting to earn more than $2,500 and up to $10,000 must be approved by the Superintendent.

    3. Fundraisers expecting to earn more than $10,000 must be approved by the Board of Education.

  2. Fundraising activities shall be supervised by a member of the school faculty or other employee designated by the approver.

  3. The approver shall ensure that the activity has been appropriately classified as a school-sponsored activity.

  4. Donations from individuals or organizations will follow the District's gifts and donations policy.

  5. The sale of banners, advertising, signs or other promotional material that will be displayed on school property must be approved by the Principal before the items are initiated or printed, and must meet community standards. Partisan or political advertising and advertising for products that are prohibited by law for sale or use by minors, such as alcohol, tobacco, or other substances that are known to endanger the health and well- being of students, are prohibited.

Fundraising Standards for School-Sponsored Activities

  1. The District reserves the right to prohibit, restrict or limit any fundraising activities associated with the District or individual schools.

  2. Faculty and student participation in fundraisers is typically voluntary. However, employees may be directed to supervise specific activities as an employment assignment. Students, including fee-waiver-eligible students, may be required to participate fully in school, team, or group-wide fundraisers in order to benefit from the fundraisers.

  3. Participation in fundraising shall not affect a student's grade. Students shall not be required to participate in fundraising activities as a condition of belonging to a team, club or group, nor shall a student's fundraising effort affect their participation time or standing on any team, club or group.

  4. The Board also encourages schools and school organizations to thoroughly scrutinize commercially sponsored fundraising activities to ensure that they are not exploitive of children, do not sell products or services at highly inflated prices, and do not unfairly pressure children to participate by offering attractive rewards for high levels of sales performance. Competitive enticements for participation in fundraisers are discouraged. If prizes or rewards are offered by a selected fundraising vendor, they should only be awarded to groups, classes or students, and must be disclosed and approved prior to the fundraiser. Rewards, prizes, commissions, or other direct or indirect compensation shall not be received by any teacher, activity, club or group director, or any other employee or volunteer.

  5. Secondary schools may not impose a sales quota (or the like), without administrative approval, as part of fundraising efforts. Elementary schools may not impose a sales quota (or the like) as part of fundraising efforts. Students or parents shall not be required to pay for any unsold items, or pay for goals not met.

  6. It is the policy of the Board of Education that elementary schools shall not require, encourage, promote or sponsor door-to-door soliciting on the part of students. Door-to-door sales are prohibited for all students in elementary and middle schools.

  7. Secondary schools and school organizations may sponsor limited door-to-door fund raising activities involving secondary students. Such fundraising activities must meet the overall intent of this policy and students must adhere to the following requirements:

    1. Participation must be in groups of two or more students.

    2. Door-to-door fundraising must be done during daylight hours only.

    3. Students are to remain at the door and not enter any home.

  8. Schools and school organizations shall avoid as much as possible fundraising activities involving the selling of products or services which directly compete with local businesses within School District boundaries. The Board encourages service-oriented activities and activities which provide a needed service or product, avoiding activities which create a nuisance to or a burden on families, businesses or community members.

  9. Approval may be denied for fundraising activities that would expose the school or LEA to risk of financial loss or liability if the activity is not successful.

  10. Fundraising activities shall be age appropriate, and shall maintain the highest standards of ethical responsibility and integrity.

  11. Fundraising revenues should be accounted for at an individual contribution level or participation level. Participation logs should be retained and turned into the accounting office to be included with the deposit detail.

  12. Employees who approve, manage, or oversee fundraising activities are required to disclose if they have a financial or controlling interest or access to bank accounts in a fundraising organization or company.

  13. Records of all fundraising efforts shall be open to the parents, students and donors, including accurate reporting on participation levels and financial outcomes. This policy does not require the release of personally identifiable information protected by FERPA.

Non School-Sponsored Activities and Fundraisers

  1. Activities, clubs, groups and their associated fundraisers or other activities that are not school- sponsored or groups, clubs, sports, and programs that are not managed by employees are deemed to be non-school- sponsored. Non-school-sponsored activities may:

    1. Not use the school's or District's name without express District permission.

    2. Not use the District's facilities, equipment, and other assets or staff unless a facilities use agreement is initiated and approved. These agreements should follow District policy for other facilities use agreements.

    3. Not utilize District employees (in their official capacity) and other resources to supervise, promote, and otherwise staff the activity or fundraiser.

    4. Not be insured under the District's risk management or insurance policy. Non-school-sponsored activities must provide their own insurance through a third-party insurer.

    5. Not provide additional compensation or stipends for District employees, if the activity is not substantially different from a District employee's regular job functions and duties and outside of the employee's contract hours.

    6. Not co-mingle public funds and private fundraising proceeds or expenditures.

    7. Not use school records to contact parents or students.

  2. Parental notification by a District employee is required if the employee is involved in the planning, administration, advertising, or serving as staff for a non-school-sponsored activity, and if District students are involved. This notification shall occur using the "Non-School-Sponsored Parent Notification" form. A copy of this form shall be submitted to the Principal by the employee prior to the event.

  3. Funds, donations, or gifts generated through non-school-sponsored activities or events may be donated to the District or to an individual school to support specific programs, teams, groups, clubs, etc. All donations or gifts shall follow the guidance established in the District's donations and gifts policy.

  4. Non-curricular clubs specifically authorized under Utah Code 53A-11-1205 through 1208 are not considered school-sponsored.

Employee Relationships and Disclosure

  1. Employee Participation in Private or Non-School-Sponsored Events

    1. District employees:

      1. May participate in a private but public education-related activity.

      2. Must ensure that personal participation in these activities is separate and distinguishable from the employee's public employment, official job title, or job duties.

      3. May not contact District students using education records or information obtained through public employment unless the records or information are available to the general public.

      4. May not use school time to discuss, promote, or prepare for a private or non-school-sponsored activity.

      5. May offer public education-related services, programs or activities to students, provided they are not advertised or promoted during school time or using any type or amount of school resources.

      6. May not require private or non-school-sponsored activities for credit or participation in school programs.

      7. Must satisfy all requirements of Utah Code 53A-1-402.5, regarding ethical conduct standards, and R277-107, regarding educational services outside of the educator's regular employment.

  2. Employees may purchase advertising space to promote private or non-school-sponsored events in the same manner as the general public. The employee's employment and experience can be used to demonstrate qualifications. The advertisement must specifically state that the activity is not school-sponsored.

  3. Employees may engage in outside employment with a private entity or other separate organizations that does not interfere with District duties or job functions. Employees must complete the District disclosure agreement annually when engaging in outside employment that is similar to the employee's official job duties or functions.

  4. Parental notification is required if District students are recruited to participate in these activities.

  5. Employees may not set up bank accounts for activities or fundraisers associated with District responsibilities or job functions.

  6. Employees may not direct fees or fundraiser proceeds from school-sponsored activities to outside entities.

  7. Employees may not direct operating expenditures to outside funding sources or groups to avoid District procurement rules (such as equipment, uniforms, salaries or stipends, improvements, maintenance for facilities, etc.).

  8. Employees must comply with District procurement policies and procedures, including complying with competitive quotes; bid splitting; and not accepting gifts, gratuities, or kickbacks from vendors or other interested parties.