Say "NO" to Boosterthon Fun Runs in our schools

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mom of 2

Alpharetta, GA

#1 Oct 30, 2008
Attn Parents! Boosterthon Fun Run is the hot new fundraiser in our schools. You need to be aware that this company retains 48% of the profits in addition to taking up your child's class time. Protect your child's curriclum time and tell your school and PTA "NO" to Boosterthon! Fundraising activities should not take place during the school day. Save that for the weekend or after school.

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dad of 3

Atlanta, GA

#2 Oct 31, 2008
how much do you think the magazine, cookie dough, and wrapping paper companies keep? i can tell you it's the same if not more. these guys got my 3rd grader asking me how he could encourage me, be more respectful, and help others. We've started doing community outreach activities because of his insistence.

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mom of 2

Alpharetta, GA

#6 Nov 1, 2008
I should have mentioned in my previous message that I thought the "run" itself was a fun event...and the Boosterthon employees did a great job. I just wish it would be held outside of the school day and the percentage split was communicated to parents. Thanks for the others who responded...I appreciate your viewpoints.
Coach G

Fort Mill, SC

#7 Nov 6, 2008
We just had a Boosterthon in the school where I teach and it was great. The profit made was more than traditional sales and there was no product to hand out. The facilitation of handing out products takes more instructional time than the Fun Run will take. As a PE teacher I was happy to see an event where the kids could use physical fitness and positive personality traits in a fundraising event. Boosterthon was great and all schools should look into their services.

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mom of 2

Alpharetta, GA

#9 Nov 7, 2008
National PTA guidlines prohibit the use of children in fundraising activites.

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just me

Alpharetta, GA

#10 Nov 10, 2008
Well, I wish they would keep it simple. I did not care for the boosterthon either. It took up class time, which WAS more than 5 minutes and made me have to dole out quite a bit of money to appease my 4th grader. We pay extremely high taxes here and I think more should should go into the schools so our children are not out hocking people wares or running for money. These fundraisers are very stressfull for my child and our bank accounts. I do not work so I can't take the forms in for people to order and I would never ask my husband to either. So now we are already tapped financially for rising living costs and high taxes and then we get all these fundraising pamplets throughout the year. There has to be a better way than turning our children into marketing tools. With the economy in mind and the safety of our children (who are not allowed to go door to door), our schools should be getting the money they need from the government we pay such high taxes to.
John

Powder Springs, GA

#12 Nov 13, 2008
It's fascinating to read this. I did some reading on the web and it sounds like a good return on any fund raiser is about 50%. Of course, that doesn't count all of the time and energy that the faculty puts into a fund raiser. I've had some exposure to Boosterthon although not directly through a Fund raiser. This prompted me to do some looking around.

The average Booster request is for ~$30. Even in this tight economy, that does not seem unreasonable, is it? They also give prizes based on the number of states represented and various stuff like that. Not just who gets the most dollars.

Boosterthon removes the workload from the faculty and the average school receives more money at the end of a Boosterthon FunRun than with any other fund raiser they have ever done. Sure the prizes are absurd, and there's lots of competition, but isn't that life? It's a great opportunity to teach your kids to do their best and know that's what truly matters. You can't look to the schools to teach your children self-respect and self-esteem. That comes from the home, and if they have that, then they'll be able to roll with not just this pressure and competition, but the real pressure and competition that comes with life.

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mom of 2

Alpharetta, GA

#13 Nov 13, 2008
A few additional thoughts to consider if your PTA utilizes Boosterthon as a fundraiser:

The National PTA policy cleary states that children should not be used as fundraisers and children should not take part in fundraising activities.

PTA policy states that: A PTA renders a greater service by working to secure adequate funding for programs that have an enduring benefit than by purchasing equipment for schools. The PTA should not contribute to the problem of inequities within a school district by excessive fundraising.

In response to John. I'd like to point out that Sally Foster for example clearly states their percentage split on marketing materials and their website. Sally Foster is an optional fundraiser. Some would argue that our children are held hostage to a program like Boosterthon where they have access to our children in the classroom on a daily basis during the fundraising drive.

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Mother -Jacksonville

Jacksonville, FL

#14 Nov 14, 2008
Boosterthon does a great job marketing itself to busy parents. Boosterthon is disruptive to the school and the pressure put on the children to raise money is ridiculous. Their mantra about character education hypnotizes parents into believing that this is really great! But it isn't. Boosterthon's deception is clever when it comes to teaching the child to solicit at least a "$1.00 per lap" when the lap is only 1/6 of a mile and each child is encouraged to run 25 to 35 laps. Thus, your average donor is on the hook for $25.00 to $35.00 before they know what hit them. How about that for character education?

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Mother -Jacksonville

Jacksonville, FL

#15 Nov 14, 2008
Correction. The lap is only 1/16 of a mile.
Dad of 3

Marietta, GA

#16 Nov 15, 2008
My daughters school used Boosterthon last year and had record participation and funds donated all the kids seemed to enjoy it. I think of ALL the fundraising we have done for other schools I preferred this and couldn't believe others haven't thought of this sooner. Everyone wants to support their kids school and having to purchase cookie dough, popcorn, wrapping paper and all that other junk for me is a waste. The kids really don't do that much of the "Fund Raising" activities and so it really is a Parent event and not much for the kids. This let's them at least have some roll in the 'fun'draising .

I didn't get to go to the fun run but my wife recorded it on video and all I saw was kids being encouraged to EXCERCISE and have fun doing it! During different laps they had the kids do different things to keep them encouraged (had had them drinking plenty of water!) What a horrible thing!:-)

My daughter this year was looking forward to it again, except the school went back to the other stuff. Turns out they didn't raise that much and are going to do Boosterthon again next year. Yeah!

As for the $1/lap my daughter told them she was going to do 20-24 laps so they all knew how much they would be donating.
mom of 2

Alpharetta, GA

#17 Nov 15, 2008
Dad of 3- is your child in a public or private school?
just the facts

Tucker, GA

#18 Nov 16, 2008
The Boosterthon company only took 1% of the 48% in actual profit last year. There is a huge amount of money that goes into the organization and operations of such a program. I happen to think it is a great way to raise money for the school. There are many learning aspects to the program including character traits, fitness, and for the younger ones, money concepts and geography. Why shouldn't the kids participate during school? As a teacher, I see many positive academic and social aspects to the Boosterthon.
just the facts

Tucker, GA

#19 Nov 16, 2008
The materials clearly state that the average lap count is 30 with a cap of 35.
Mother -Jacksonville

Jacksonville, FL

#20 Nov 19, 2008
The "just the facts" statement above doesn't seem correct. If the Boosterthon only takes 1% of the 48% actual profit from donations, then on a school collection of $20,000, Boosterthon would net $96.00?($20,000 x 48%=$9,600). 1% of $9,600 is $96.00.
LibraryLady

United States

#21 Nov 19, 2008
We just had our fun run today and it was wonderful. This is our third and possibly last year for this fundraiser due to uninformed, arm chair quarterbacks that have NO idea how much it costs to run a school. Every year we have made more than double what we made by doing traditional fundraisers that (let's be honest here) elementary school children did not even participate in - who do you think REALLY sells all that wrapping paper? Boosterthon totally involves the children. I have worked in Elementary schools for 15 years and this is the best thing to come along in fundraisers I have ever seen. Mom of 2 - lighten up!
Da Martyr

Roswell, GA

#22 Nov 21, 2008
It's bad enough paying taxes for public schools, now you have kids going door to door trying to guilt/bleed us out of more money. If they had true freedom of choice in school selection (through vouchers) your pathetic public schools would fail because everyone would take their voucher to superior private schools.
Dad of 2 in Roswell

Roswell, GA

#23 Jan 25, 2009
Boosterthon cost my daughter classroom time and me money for very little return.

I am very opposed to school vouchers because they would further degrade the public school system. It is misguided to think they would improve education overall.

I am also opposed to the boosterthon. We just had ours here in Roswell. My daughter participated and I am proud of her and how she did. The school earned "over $2000" for this program. In a school of 865 that averages out to less than $3 per student. The amount of the pledges they were asking for, are beyond most people's ability to pay. We as a family did pledge money and will pay it. If the school directly asked parents for donations of $3 (or more) per child, the families would have spent less money, the school would get more, ALL of the money donated would have gone to the school not just 52 percent, and no classroom time would be lost. On the day of the boosterthon, my daughter drew pictures, participated in the run, then went back to her class and watched TV, then went home. I am very upset at this total waste of valuable school time. Other time was taken away from her during the preperation, and was spent on pep rallies, showing them how to get pledges, pledge drives, etc. For the amount of money that was actually brought in in exchange for the student's classroom time, I feel MY money and HER time was wasted. I will not be pledging anything for this event in the future, and will be in discussion with the school about my daughter's educational time being thrown away for so little return.
Da Martyr

Roswell, GA

#24 Jan 26, 2009
Dad of 2 in Roswell wrote:
Boosterthon cost my daughter classroom time and me money for very little return.
I am very opposed to school vouchers because they would further degrade the public school system. It is misguided to think they would improve education overall.
I am also opposed to the boosterthon. We just had ours here in Roswell. My daughter participated and I am proud of her and how she did. The school earned "over $2000" for this program. In a school of 865 that averages out to less than $3 per student. The amount of the pledges they were asking for, are beyond most people's ability to pay. We as a family did pledge money and will pay it. If the school directly asked parents for donations of $3 (or more) per child, the families would have spent less money, the school would get more, ALL of the money donated would have gone to the school not just 52 percent, and no classroom time would be lost. On the day of the boosterthon, my daughter drew pictures, participated in the run, then went back to her class and watched TV, then went home. I am very upset at this total waste of valuable school time. Other time was taken away from her during the preperation, and was spent on pep rallies, showing them how to get pledges, pledge drives, etc. For the amount of money that was actually brought in in exchange for the student's classroom time, I feel MY money and HER time was wasted. I will not be pledging anything for this event in the future, and will be in discussion with the school about my daughter's educational time being thrown away for so little return.
You think the government will ever get education (or anything for that matter) right? It's communist of you to think that we should have to pay funds for government indoctrination (public schools). Vouchers would force the public schools to step up or get shut down, so they would help education. Private schools typically have smarter students (higher test scores at least) and they operate on half or less of the money as their public counterparts. Giving parents a choice of schools by giving them a voucher would allow more people to send their children to these superior schools. Of course you wouldn't want people to have a choice though. One size fits all, right? We should be forced to send our children to your inferior public schools for conditioning purposes, huh?
Central Alabama Mom

Helena, AL

#25 Jan 27, 2009
My children do go to a private school. We spend $8000 a yeaf in tuition. They also do Boosterthon, I am told that the school gets 40%, the company gets 60%. I am a non-fan of this event mainly because of the pressure this event puts on my children to bring in money. I realize they do character training and physical training to get prepared and that's great. But what kind of character training is my child receiving when being taught to "beg" others for money? All of this is done while rewarding children each day for their efforts. Each day, my children come home in tears because they didn't get the prize that little Johnny did. Each afternoon, we have to have to same talk over and over again. We cannot, as parents send in money each day. After all, we send in a big check each month. My extended family is suffering, my neighbors are trying to sell their homes. It's really tough for these kids to find anyone to "help" out with this fundraiser. I feel like Boosterthon is training a bunch of kids to be telemarketers. I did not participate in Boosterthon when my kids went to public schools and I will not be participating in the private school either. Oh, and I am also for vouchers!

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