I recently performed a very successful school fundraising auction for an extremely happy and grateful group of parents and faculty. I wanted to share their success to give other schools and organizations hope that they really can make a difference. Caring parents and school administrators are finding ways to solve funding problems with their own hard work, instead of waiting for politicians and tax legislation to step in and save the day. Many people don’t realize it, but a school fundraising auction can raise thousands of dollars, even hundreds of thousands of dollars. I’ve conducted many of them.
School fundraising ideas are an increasingly popular topic of parent and teacher meetings at both public and private schools that are struggling with funding. A combination of factors has reduced public school funds in recent years. Just last November, voters in my home state of Colorado rejected a tax hike that would have helped schools recover some of the loss. A decrease in revenues from property taxes has put more of a burden on the state to cover school funding. And then of course there’s politics… Reflecting a similar funding problem, private schools have been seen an overall nationwide decline in their enrollment since the economic downturn. These schools receive no state or federal funding and must find ways to offset the cost of a private education to make their tuition affordable for families.
Like expenses in our own family budgets, schools must maintain buildings with adequate heating and cooling, provide transportation for the students, supply curriculum, and provide salaries and benefits to many employees. How can schools deal with funding that has decreased, while many of these expenses have increased? Unfortunately, most school districts have been forced into budget cuts. These range from cutting programs, reducing teacher and aid positions, increasing class sizes, forgoing textbooks and classroom supplies, and many other reductions that affect our children’s education.
With a little bit of cooperation between parents and school personnel, you can put together a fun and productive fundraising event. Whether it is a large or small event, the proceeds from a school benefit auction will go directly to the school’s needs. A school fundraising auction can become a fun community event that can make an important difference in the lives of the students.