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School Board passes policy for fundraising
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Warren County School Board members hope to bring oversight and transparency with their new policy governing fundraising. 

A centralized policy on fundraisers has been unanimously approved. It outlines the approval process for fundraisers and sheds light on the profit margin, how the school is to be paid, and student participation.

The policy is now in effect. 

“This policy answers the concerns I’ve had for quite some time about fundraising,” said School Board member Bill Zechman, who said fundraising is “absolutely essential” and transparency is vital. “Personally, I think this new policy meets most of our needs and emphasizes transparency and full disclosure in fundraising, including the percentage cut that goes to the private-sector vendor. It also reiterates the no coercion principle to protect students.”

Per the policy:

All fundraising activities shall be authorized by the School Board and shall be for the purpose of supplementing funds for established school programs and not for replacing funds which are the responsibility of the school system.

Fundraising companies and other salespersons shall obtain permission in writing from the Director of Schools office in order to visit the schools

Any commission payable by companies shall be paid in the form of reduced prices to the students or paid into the activity fund of the school for use by the school. No school employee shall personally benefit from any fundraising activity.

The principal shall obtain written approval from the Director of Schools/ designee for all fundraising activities, including online fundraising activities that involve the participation of the general student population in the marketing process of the fundraising effort. 

All other fundraising activities, including online fundraising activities, shall have written approval from the principal and comply with all administrative procedures issued by the Director of Schools. 

The authorization request shall contain the following information:

• A list of the proposed fundraising activities

• Purpose of the fundraising activity

• Proposed uses of funds raised

• Expected student involvement in fundraising activity (school-wide, individual class, or club)

• Margin of profit and how it is to be paid to the school

The Director of Schools shall determine whether the activity will benefit the school, contribute to the welfare of the student body, and supplement, not replace, funds necessary to fulfil the School Board’s required contributions.

Students shall not be excused from a regular class to participate in a fundraising activity. No grade in a subject or course shall be affected by a student’s participation in a fundraising activity. 

No quotas shall be imposed on students involved, and their efforts shall be voluntary. Students who do not participate in fundraising activities shall not be punished or discriminated against in any way. 

No fundraising activity shall be conducted which distributes prizes or makes awards to winners from among purchasers of chances by means of tickets through a random selection process.