School Fundraising Ideas That Work

School fundraising is always important, whether you’re fundraising for school equipment in the wake of funding cuts or for a cause that’s dear to the school’s heart.

Thankfully, there are plenty of school fundraising ideas for how to raise money for primary school, PTA fundraising ideas, and high school fundraisers.

From cake sales and book swaps to dress-down days, pamper mornings and quiz nights, there’s enough to engage children, parents and teachers alike, meaning fundraising can be a full school effort.

Just make it clear that donations are voluntary, as not everybody will be in a position to spare funds for every fundraising event you put on. If you’re feeling stuck on how to raise money for your school, check out some of the best school fundraising ideas for the UK below.

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Group of happy volunteers

Football club fundraising ideas

Baby smiling and covered in paint

1. Fancy dress day

Give children free rein on what they choose to dress up as, or come up with a theme once a term. Examples could include Disney, ‘What I Want To Be When I Grow Up’, and Halloween in autumn. A classic of the primary school fundraising ideas in the UK genre.

Bouncy castle

2. Sponsored bounce

Few things get children more excited than a huge bouncy castle. Hire one and run a sponsored non-stop bounce, with the kids taking turns to keep the bouncing going. Before the bounce, give the children sponsor forms to collect as many sponsors as they can in a bid to win a prize for the most sponsors.

Make sure parents sign forms stating that the school will not accept responsibility for injury and obtain an insurance certificate from the bouncy castle operators. If this sounds like too much faff, please parents with a sponsored silence.

Santa

3. Carol singing

Christmas is a smart time to ramp up your school fundraising as the festive spirit in the air may encourage people to give more generously. Take a group of cute school children carol singing in the local community and the donations are sure to roll in. Consider selling mince pies and hot chocolate, or tree decorations and cards made by the kids, to passers-by. Print out some spare song sheets so they can join in.

Cake

4. Cake sale

For some school fundraising UK-style, consider a cake sale. The Great British Bake Off has inspired many an amateur baker, so give parents the chance to show off their skills (or hit the local supermarket!) with a classic cake sale.

Children will enjoy getting involved with making and decorating cakes. Less so with the washing up.

Smarties

5. Smarties challenge

Give every child a tube of Smarties and ask them to bring it back empty of smarties, but full of loose change (that they’ve asked their parents for first, of course) if they can. Smarties tubes can hold £12-worth of 20p pieces, but even tubes full of 5ps, 10ps and pennies will quickly tot up.

Don’t make this a competition to raise the most money, as that puts too much pressure on parents, especially those with multiple children at the school. One alternative, suggested on mumsnet, is to offer a prize for the best-decorated tube. Or you could give children a fortnight to ‘earn’ as many coins as they could by doing jobs around the house.

Group of happy volunteers

6. Crowdfund your way to success

One of the easiest ways to harness the power of your primary school fundraising community is through starting a GoFundMe. There’s no greater example of parent power than in school WhatsApp groups, which are a great place to share your GoFundMe campaign.

Parents have even used GoFundMe to raise money for teachers, like at Rugby Free Primary who raised £36,000 to help a teacher struck by a mystery illness walk again.

 

PTA fundraising ideas

Clothes rack

1. Clothes swap

Shopping environmentally is all the rage, so organising a clothes swap in the school gym with an entry fee is one of the best pta fundraising ideas. Everybody brings clothes in good condition that they no longer want, browse the rails and take home the same number of clothes that they brought. If they want to take home more, charge a little extra per item. Spread the word with posters around the local area. Guests will be paying peanuts for a new wardrobe, meaning this event is bound to be popular.

Man looking at question mark

2. Quiz time

Bit of a boffin when it comes to general knowledge? Used to winning big at your local pub? One of the most popular PTA fundraising ideas, parents will love showing off at a termly quiz night and might even be willing to buy a ticket for the privilege.

Recipe book

3. School cookbook

Source family recipes from staff and put together a cookbook, noting which recipe came from whom and the story behind it. Kids will love finding out more about their teachers and parents will welcome fresh inspiration for meal-times. It’s easy to find an online publisher to print books from digital pages that you can then sell to parents.

massage

4. Pamper morning

Offer manicures and gentle head, neck and shoulder massages to weary parents for a small fee after the school drop-off. Make use of a classroom and supply some tea, coffee and pastries. Elevate your event by inviting local therapists to offer their services at a reduced fee in exchange for promotion among local mums.

High five

4. Get crowdfunding

When Foley Park primary School had its tools stolen, parent Georgina May Thompson turned to GoFundMe to raise hundreds . She’s not the only one, Romsey Primary School also raised hundreds for a new play trail area this year, while Harrow Lodge primary school raised thousands towards a new playground.

Fundraising ideas for secondary school

Sports coach

1. Fundraising contest

Spark interest and excitement for fundraising among students by getting them to join forces with some friends, come up with a team name, settle on a school fundraising project and compete with other groups to raise the most money possible and win a prize.

British money

2. Get revenge on teacher

Teachers can play a big role in any school fundraising efforts by being good sports willing to do silly things for money! Set a fundraising target which, if met, means a teacher has to follow through on a promise. Promises could include getting a crazy haircut or having a cream pie rubbed into their face.

Disco

3. Disco

Pupils from the younger years will enjoy the chance to dress up and party with their friends, albeit with some parents or teachers lurking in the background. School gyms are big enough to invite everybody – and maybe even a guest school or two.

Get hold of some disco lights and speakers and make your own Spotify playlist to save money on a DJ. Enlist some sixth-formers to help sell reduced-price tickets in advance, full-price tickets on the door and sell soft drinks and sweets on the night.

 

Man in library

4. Book swap

Fundraising ideas that also serve educational purposes are win-win for schools. Encourage pupils to keep reading by asking them to bring in books they’ve read or no longer want. If they bring in a small donation, they can choose a ‘new’ one from the table to take home.

Looking through binoculars

5. Spy ring

Every student pays to enter and receive the name of the student they have to ‘catch’. Once caught, that student hands over the name of the student they were trying to catch. This continues until there is only one spy standing, who is proclaimed the winner! Spy ring works particularly well in big schools where detective work is involved to find out who your target is. Teachers getting involved makes for some amusing teacher-pupil lunch-time chases through the corridors, but you might want to put a ban on dining room chases or mid-lesson catches!

People high fiveing

6. Start a GoFundMe

You can help your school out with funding through a GoFundMe page. That’s what parents at Woodrush school in Birmingham did when their boiler broke, leaving the school threatened with closure.

Start your school fundraiser

If you’re in need of funds quickly or parents are calling for a faff-free approach to school fundraising, set up a free GoFundMe page.

GoFundMe differs from many other fundraising platforms in that there are no hidden fees. Our experts are on hand to offer advice around the clock while downloading our mobile app means you can check in on your fundraising progress while on the school run.

Setting up your GoFundMe page could not be quicker or easier, and there’s a treasure trove of expert fundraising tips on our free blog to help you raise the most money possible for your school’s cause.

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