School Fundraising Projects
A unit president contacts Provincial Office with concerns from members about their roles in school fundraising projects. Teachers say that the number of fundraisers is greatly increasing and the class time consumed is significant. They are also concerned about being held liable if money disappears. What should teachers do about the expectations of their principals to be involved in fundraisers? Should teachers be compensated for this additional responsibility?
If teachers are engaging in fundraising activities specific to their classroom, such as a class trip, it is imperative to follow school board policies for collecting, recording and depositing the money. Precise record keeping is essential. In many cases, it is appropriate, as soon as the money is collected and recorded, to deliver it to the principal or school secretary. Keep copies of all receipts. The question of compensation is always one for the collective bargaining process, although it is doubtful that most negotiating teams would feel comfortable taking this issue to the table.
The number of fundraising activities has increased markedly, primarily as a response to increased shortfalls in government funding for classroom materials. The matter becomes more complicated because school councils, that initiate many of the activities, will weigh the concerns of teachers against the question: What materials or initiatives do we want our kids to do without?
If teachers have concerns about fundraising, they should speak with their principal. The issue can be addressed at a staff meeting, where all teachers can voice their experiences and concerns. The results of those discussions can then be presented to the school council, either by the principal or the OECTA association representative.