Classmunity’s By the Numbers infographic series presents relevant facts and data for educators, focusing primarily on fundraising for schools and technology in the classroom. Have an idea? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
No one that works in education would ever say that being a teacher is an easy job. Teachers wear many different hats – mentor, friend, role-model, counselor, snack-provider, cheerleader, and more – all while cajoling their students into learning the knowledge and skills they need to make their way in the world. Because these teachers/mentors/friends/cheerleaders/etc. want what is best for their students, they are also constantly seeking new experiences and teaching methods. But these cool, high-impact experiences (e.g. field trips, robotics kits, art supplies, etc.) come with hard costs. This means that teachers have to don yet another hat – fundraising guru.
But asking a teacher to become a fundraising whiz overnight is unreasonable. Most teachers’ skill sets align with their chosen profession – teaching – and not with fundraising. As a result, many teachers gravitate towards product based fundraisers, which are known quantities in schools. Bring the vendor in, get the kids fired up, nag the students into selling a bunch of overpriced stuff no one really wants to buy, collect all the money, and submit the forms. Hopefully, if all goes well, at the end of it all the teacher receives a check and is able to fund the project.
But those fundraisers are expensive, although they are good at hiding their cost. If you dig into the financials, you will discover that most vendors only leave schools with 40-60 cents on the dollar. And that makes teachers question if product based fundraisers are really an efficient use of their time. In the Product vs Donation Fundraisers infographic, we gathered some of the pertinent numbers on the returns of product and donation fundraisers. Although there is no one-size-fits-all type of fundraiser, more information helps everyone make better decisions based on the time and resources they have available. So next time you are planning a fundraiser, pull out your calculator app and crunch some numbers!