Saturday, September 8, 2007

Fundraising

So here's the deal: in order to get the school library some new books, we parents are supposed to participate in a fundraiser. We've been given a couple of catalogs of items that we're supposed to buy or talk our friends, grandparents, parents' coworkers, or other folks into buying in order to raise money for the library. The school is using a company called Paragon Promotions out of Evansville to handle the catalogs, write letters to parents, print the order forms, collect the money, etc. Presumably, after the merchandise is paid for and Paragon gets their cut, they'll send a check on over to the school and they'll be able to buy the books.

I want to get the school some books. As part of the construction this year, there is a new library room, and presumably there'll be space for a lot of new books.

But does this fundraising plan raise as many questions in your mind as it does in mine?

  • What percentage of the money actually goes to library books?
  • How much is Paragon's cut?
  • Is every school doing this at the same time? How many kids are doing these fundraisers?
  • How much is in the library fund now? What percentage of the school's overall budget goes to it?
  • What books are they going to buy? What books do they have now?
  • Can I just donate directly to the library fund? I sure don't want to mess around with this "cold call sales" thing.
  • Can I just donate books directly to the library?

Of course, when a big library buys books it gets these extra-strength bindings so the books can be read hundreds of times. But even our very nice city library has some ordinary paperbacks that I'm guessing people have donated to them. What the heck? Lend 'em out a dozen times and toss 'em, or even sell them in a book sale if they're not in too bad shape. No harm, no foul. But even if there's some arcane regulation against doing this, I need to know a lot more about the school finances so I can help out their library and book buying like I want to.

1 comment:

Ann Marie Curling said...

Our school is doing the same fundraiser, the purpose of ours though is for the rubbery turf to go under our playground equipment.

We are NOT selling this stuff, it's absolutely ridiculous the pricing on this stuff. I've never been a fan of school fundraisers of this sort.

I'm all for going for the good old fashioned cash method. I think that some construction dudes around here, or whatnot could come up with some sort of service project to get our project done.

I agree with you about the books. My child lost a book last year at school and I offered the replace it by buying it off of Amazon (it wasn't a good binding one either...we're talking an Elementary cardboard/paper book) which was cheaper than what the school was charging me to replace it, and they told me NO. What is wrong with parents donating books, or giving to the library fund. I don't get why things have to always be so complicated when it comes to bureaucracy in schools.