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Policy 4020 – Fundraising by Schools and School-Sponsored Organizations

The purpose of this policy is to provide a framework for fundraising activities within the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS).

Policy Document

I. Policy Statement

The Board of Education recognizes that fundraising activities are used by the school system and individual schools, as well as school-sponsored organizations to support school-related endeavors. The Board approves of fundraising by these groups as long as the proceeds of these activities contribute to the educational experience of students and that the conduct of these activities does not conflict with or disrupt the operation of the instructional program.

II. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to provide a framework for fundraising activities within the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS).

III. Definitions

Within the context of this policy, the following definitions apply:

  1. Advertising – The display of a message, logo, website, phone number, address, or photograph of an individual, service, or product on school property or in an official school communication in return for a fee.

  2. Charitable Cause – Recognized non-profit organization, or local, regional, national or international charitable concern.

  3. Co-curricular and Extracurricular Activities – Activities that relate directly to or complement the curriculum, or activities supported by the school or its employees in which students participate.

  4. Donations – Equipment, materials, money, or property given to a school or to the school system for use in or in conjunction with educational or extracurricular programs.

  5. Donation Campaign – Organized outreach by an HCPSS program, school, team, group or employee to solicit donations either online, by mail, or in person.

  6. Fiduciary Agent – The person responsible for overseeing school activity funds in accordance with HCPSS policies and procedures.

  7. Fundraising Activity – Any activity or event held by the school system, individual schools, or a school-sponsored organization that sells goods or services in order to generate money for the school system as well as any activity or event advertised as intended to raise revenue on behalf of a charitable cause.

  8. Local Committee – School-based committee appointed by the school principal for the purpose of reviewing applications for fundraising activities submitted by the school and school-sponsored organizations.

  9. Nominal Value – An item having a retail value of no more than $20.

  10. School-Based Administrator – Principal, Assistant Principal or Athletic and Activities Manager.

  11. School-Sponsored Organization – Any organization (e.g., athletic teams, student groups) for which the school provides supervision. PTA/PTSA and Booster groups are not considered school-sponsored organizations and are not under the purview of this policy.

  12. Vendor – Any individual or company providing

IV. Standards

  1. The provisions of this policy apply to fundraising activities held by the school system, individual schools, and school-sponsored organizations.

  2. Fundraising activities, as defined, are separate activities from donations with the purpose being to generate money for the school, school-sponsored organization, or charitable cause that may include the exchange of services or goods.

  3. All items purchased using fundraising proceeds become the property of the Howard County Board of Education and must conform to appropriate standards, specifications, and guidelines for use.

  4. Revenue generated by fundraising activities may not be used to reinstate programs, services, or personnel that were cut as a result of budget deliberations. Any exceptions require the approval of the Board of Education.

  5. Approval

    1. Any fundraising activity must be approved by the local committee before being scheduled, advertised or conducted, as follows:

      1. Fundraising activities sponsored by the school system that benefit the system or a charitable cause must be approved by the Superintendent/designee.

      2. Fundraising activities sponsored by a school or school-sponsored organization that benefit an individual school or a charitable cause must be approved by the school-based administrator with the advice of the school’s local committee.

    2. Fundraising activities will:

      1. Support the co- or extracurricular activities of the school system or individual schools, or benefit a charitable cause;

      2. Promote the general welfare, education, morale and civic-mindedness of students;

      3. Not conflict with or disrupt the education program;

      4. Not make use of incentives at the elementary and middle school levels unless they are of nominal value, do not remove students from school property and are approved by the school principal;

      5. Not allow door-to-door solicitation by students

      6. Not take place in an environment that endangers the health or safety of students;

      7. Be conducted in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations;

      8. Not violate state gambling laws;

      9. Comply with all provisions of Policy 10020 Use of School Facilities;

      10. Use only vendors on the Department of Education’s Approved Vendor List;

      11. Not consist of advertising with the exception of student newspapers, yearbooks, written programs for student performances, banners, school folders, and school book covers.

  6. Reporting

    1. Financial information on school-based fundraising activities will be maintained through the school activity account and will comply with all requirements in the HCPSS School Activity Funds Manual.

    2. Financial information on the fundraising activities of the school system will be reported to the Superintendent/designee.

    3. Financial information on all system-wide and applicable school-based fundraising activities will be provided to the Board of Education annually.

    4. Information on fundraising activities is available to the public.

V. Responsibilities

  1. Compliance with applicable provisions of this policy is a condition of the continuation of any individual fundraising activity, as well as the approval of subsequent fundraising activities.

  2. The school-based administrator will determine the size and composition of the local committee, which will review fundraising applications and make recommendations regarding approval.

  3. Funds raised will be handled in accordance with Policy 4030 School Activity Funds.

  4. The Superintendent/designee will prepare an annual financial report for Policy 4020 Fundraising by Schools and School-Sponsored Organizations. This report will contain by school and/or department a summary for fundraising.

VI. Delegation of Authority

  1. The Superintendent is authorized to develop all necessary and appropriate procedures to implement and monitor compliance with this policy.

  2. Each school principal is the fiduciary agent for his/her school and is therefore responsible for all funds raised under the provisions of this policy by the school or its school-sponsored organizations.

VII. References


C. Relevant Data Sources

D. Other

HCPSS School Activity Funds Manual

VIII. History

ADOPTED - March 14, 1991

REVIEWED - July 1, 2011


REVISED - January 27, 2005, May 14, 2020

EFFECTIVE - July 1, 2020