Question: PTO and Education Foundation Fundraising

We have both a PTO and an Education Foundation. Our school is small, 950 students, and we are starting to step on each others toes when it comes to fundraising. Where should the PTO focus on raising money and where should the Foundation focus on raising money. Right now, both of our organizations are competing with raising funds from our school's family members.

Asked by suenatale



Advice from PTO Today

Craig writes:
Typically a local education foundation (LEF) seeks large cash or in-kind donations from corporations or individuals. They might hold a major annual event like an dinner-dance and auction, but they don't sell wrapping paper, sponsor a fun run, run a bake sale, or do other types of fundraising that PTOs do. PTOs in most communities focus on an individual school, while the LEF has a community-wide focus. LEFs usually back large-scale projects and give teacher grants when a significant amount of money is required. It's important that the PTO and LEF work together, especially if your community has just one PTO. You'll get the most out of all of your efforts with some real joint planning. For some information on how PTOs and LEFs work together, check out the article Working With a Local Education Foundation.

Community Advice

CMay2CK writes:
First, I wouldn't say a 950 student school is small LOL! We have just over 700 and we are one of the largest in our District. Anyway...back to the question. Our school has both a PTA and a Foundation. The PTA does the fall gift wrap/giftware fundraiser as their largest effort. They also do smaller things throughout the year. Our Foundation's biggest event is the annual auction, held in the Spring. We also do several smaller things throughout the year. Joint planning is essential. We (the Foundation) schedule our fundraisers around those of the PTA. Remember to plan your fundraising strategically (and minimally as well). Parents do not want to get yet another request for money each month. Having too many fundraisers can defeat the purpose and turn your parents off on giving.

Community Advice

sburn10 writes:
With our program... You can keep up with your earnings by using a student's name or open two separate Free accounts.

Community Advice

Doreen writes:
Go to if in Chicago area

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