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School Fundraising Tips & Success Stories from Schoola

Category: #SchoolaSuccess

School Fundraising: Our Top 10 Schools of the Year

School Fundraising Success Stories

From “most school spirit” to “most well-rounded,” the 2015-2016 year has been a knockout for school fundraising at Schoola. With more than $175,000 earned by our top-10 schools alone (averaging $17,000 each!), these schools are the heart of Schoola’s mission. Peruse their unique success stories and take a cue from them in the new year by launching your own school fundraising program with a clothing drive or requesting a donation bag to use over the summer.

Top 10 School Fundraising Successes of 2015-2016:

  1.  Most Likely to Follow Their Dreams: P.S. 9 Teunis G. Bergen Raised $36,923

P.S. 9 collected enough clothes to send every student on a field trip, something they didn’t have a budget for in the past. Field trips and hands-on learning not only help bring lessons to life but engage students overall. These experiences inspired students to become firefighters, artists and more!

Help keep field trips for P.S. 9 by requesting a donation bag.

  1. Most Likely to Win a Grammy: KIPP Academy Middle School Raised $50,633

KIPP Academy Middle School has a phenomenal orchestra program, which is expensive to maintain. However, the benefits of a music program are worth the cost–students have better focus and more confidence in the classroom.

Help keep their orchestra playing by requesting a donation bag.

  1. Most Likely to be Mistaken for Picasso: Yick Wo Elementary Raised $28,842

Yick Wo became a featured school last year when they had a $1 budget for their art program. With generous clothing donations from their community, Yick Wo has been able to keep their art program alive, and foster creativity inside and outside the classroom.

Help keep these Picassos painting by requesting a donation bag for Yick Wo.

  1. Most Likely to Medal in the Olympics: Abyssinian Benefit School Raised $22,714

Abyssinian Benefit School needed funds to build a play area for older students. Last year, donations came in from across the U.S. Not only have they built a playground with the Schoola funds, they’ve been able to purchase additional athletic equipment for the students!

Help keep these students active by requesting a donation bag.

School Fundraising Success Stories

  1. Most Likely to Go Places: Granada Elementary Has Raised $14,133

The PTA at Granada Elementary works hard to fund programs like music, drama and physical education, and they make their clothes work even harder. Everyone came together to donate and make sure electives were funded so students could get the most out of their school experience. With this supportive community these students are going places!

Help these students by requesting a donation bag.

School Fundraising Success Stories

  1. Most Likely to Inspire: Laurel Elementary Raised $4,969

Laurel Elementary has a large English-as-a-Second Language (ESL) student population. Their choral program helps students bridge language and cultural gaps, boost their confidence and achieve better grades, and they put their Schoola funds toward growing this program.

Help keep these students singing by requesting a donation bag for Laurel Elementary.

  1. Most Likely to Save the World: St. Stephen Protomartyr School Raised $4,174

With hundreds of donation bags collected, St. Stephen is using Schoola as a learning opportunity in two ways: to show students the impact recycling clothes has on the environment, and to fund their Spanish program.

Help support these global citizens by requesting a donation bag for St. Stephen’s.

  1. Most Well-Rounded: St. Justin the Martyr School Has Raised $4,838

The St. Justin community has donated more than 350 bags to date. The funds from these donations have gone to integrate technology into the classroom, create a teaching garden and improve their playground.

Help support these multi-disciplinary initiatives by requesting a donation bag.

School Fundraising Success Stories

  1. Most School Spirit: Second Friends Preschool Has Raised $6,116

This crafty school has been a pioneer in marketing their clothing drives and spreading the word throughout their community. They have had local churches and more donate on their behalf.  Their school spirit is paying off, with over 200 bags donated to date.

Show your spirit for these student by requesting a donation bag to benefit Second Friends.

  1. Most Likely to Nap in Class: Lucky Lane Nursery School Has Raised $3,479

They may still have nap time, but Lucky Lane students are poised for growth. They’re taking their outgrown clothes and using them as a school fundraising tool. 

Help support these students growth by requesting a donation bag.

Congratulations to the class of 2016—we can’t wait to see what the next school year brings. Give your school a head start by donating clothing from your Lost & Found before school’s out, or request a donation bag and clean out your closet over the summer.

Celebrating Music in Our Schools Month

Laurel Elementary Music in Our Schools Month

Laurel Elementary students celebrate music.

March is Music in Our Schools Month – a celebration of school music and its impact on students’ lives that dates back to 1973. The movement engages music educators, students, and communities from around the country to promote the benefits of high quality music education programs in schools.

The benefits of music in schools are well documented. Music has been proven to: engage students, improve cognitive development, improve math and reading skills, increase graduation rates and more. Read more about music’s impact on the brain.

At Schoola, preserving music in schools despite budget cuts is core to our mission and that’s why we’re celebrating Music in our Schools Month. There is so much evidence that #MusicMatters, but none that is more powerful than seeing firsthand, the kids that are affected by it. Let’s take this opportunity to celebrate several of our partner schools’ success in supporting their music programs by giving clothing new life.

KIPP Academy's Music in Our Schools Month

KIPP Academy’s rhythm and string orchestra.

KIPP Academy Middle School Raises $90K for Music

We salute our long-term partners KIPP Academy Middle School in Bronx, NY, where every 5th-8th grader plays an instrument in the schoolwide rhythm and string orchestra. KIPP has been able to raise over $92,000 with Schoola to refurbish and replace instruments. Davon, a 7th grader at KIPP, said that playing in the orchestra is his way of “showing people that kids from the Bronx aren’t just kids that they have stereotypes about, but students that can actually work hard…”

Laurel Elementary Raises Funds for Choir

Music helps foster self esteem and boost confidence, something Laurel Elementary has discovered with their English as a second language (ESL) learners. Laurel Elementary is $3,000 away from reaching their $10,000 goal to provide choir uniforms and fund the first musical that Laurel has hosted on its own school grounds. You can help them reach their goal by requesting a donation bag.

“Our school has a very high ESL population, and many students are struggling academically due to the language barrier. Music has helped our students achieve better grades in their core subjects and has acted as a universal language to bridge cultural gaps, boost confidence and gives students a positive outlet to express themselves,” says Laurel’s choir director, Shannon Day.

Pam & Gela Music in Our Schools Month

Shop the Pam & Gela to help.

Clinton School for Writers and Artists Raises $8K With Pam & Gela Collection

Music engages both the left and right brain, which in turn helps students in their other studies. Something The Clinton School for Writers and Artists in New York understands. They are currently building out their music program and have tapped their community, including garnering donations from clothing brand Pam & Gela who has donated thousands of new-with-tags clothing on their behalf, raising over $8,000 to date.

Save Music in Our Schools Month

Take Action & Celebrate Music in our Schools Month!

If you agree that music is worth saving, you can help by:

Schoola Welcomes 60 Schools to the Millennium Club!

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The final fundraising period in 2015 was truly impressive and we couldn’t be more thrilled to finish the year by helping more than 22,000 schools raise funds with Schoola. Each fundraising period has exceeded the last and more importantly, the average that schools earn with each drive has continued to increase, showing the power of engaged parents, grandparents and communities to supporting their schools.

Now more schools than ever have raised $1,000 in a single 3-month period. So we are pleased to present The Millennium Club, 60 standout schools who received a check for over $1,000 this past earning period.

Here are some highlights from our Millennium Club schools:

  • St. Stephen Protomartyr School ran their first drive in October of 2015 and collected 185 bags of clothes! They are using their funds to support their Spanish program.
  • The French School, the only public French immersion school in St. Louis, MO, is putting all their funds toward their 5th grade trip to France. Talk about turning gently used clothes into an educational adventure!
  • Montclair Elementary (pictured above) activated their student body, getting students to volunteer as Clothing Drive Ambassadors. They helped make signs, pass out flyers and stickers and they even collected the bags from parents at drop-off so parents didn’t even have to leave their cars. Montclair’s ambassadors’ hard work has really paid offthey’ve raised over $3,000 to date. What a great learning experience for the students!

Think your school can reach Millennium Club status? We’re here to help. We asked some of our Millennium Club members for their favorite tips. Here are 3 easy ways to increase your earnings in the next fundraising period and year to come:

  1. Get the student body involved! Empower the students to take charge of the drive. Help them make flyers and posters that advertise the drive, and get them excited about helping with collecting and boxing up the donations.
  2. Make the clothing drive a learning opportunity. Teaching the students about the importance of giving clothes a second life will help them see the direct affect their donations have not only in supporting their school, but on the environment. (It takes 700 gallons of water to make a cotton shirt!)
  3. Utilize your Schoola Coach: Schoola has an amazing team of fundraising coaches with tons of knowledge and resources ready to help you every step of the way.

You can see a list of the top 10 schools from the Millennium Club below. We look forward to seeing what new milestones schools will hit in the next fundraising period!

Top 10 Millennium Club Schools:
Kipp Academy Middle School: $12,415.73
Granada Elementary: $9,980.33
Yick Wo Elementary: $4,255.53
St Stephen Protomartyr School: $3,965.93
St Justin The Martyr School: $3,626.01
Second Friends Preschool: $3,408.44
Laurel Elementary: $3,340.25
St Therese School: $2,655.30
Montclair Elementary: $2,523.58
St Ambrose School: $2,504.85

Thanks to You We’ve Seen Tremendous Growth for Schools

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Over the past year, we’ve seen 300% growth in clothing donations. It’s all thanks to the support of our donors and more than 9,000 participating schools. And all those donated clothes translate into funds for schools. For every $5 spent at Schoola, $2 is given to schools.

Continue to make a difference by requesting a donation bag or setting up a school clothing drive by emailing coach@schoola.com. For each bag of clothing donated, an average of $40 is donated to schools.

Featured School: Brooklyn Child Care in Brooklyn, NY

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Healthy eating habits are formed early in life. At Brooklyn Child Care Inc. (BCCI), children aged 2 to 6 are exposed to a variety of fruits and vegetables in the outdoor garden and on their lunch plates. Growing, cooking, and eating fruits and vegetables is part of the curriculum at Brooklyn Child Care. Children at the center learn how vegetables grow and are involved in the gardening process. They learn about the different shapes and colors of fruits and vegetables. BCCI will use the money they raise from Schoola to buy soil, seeds, and vegetables to grow in their outdoor garden. You can shop their school page to support their goals.

Parents are extremely satisfied with the healthy choices that their children are exposed to. Natallia Yelina says, “The food is extremely diverse and includes many fruit and vegetable options. The teachers always encourage children to try new food. My youngest child, who is currently in pre-K class of BCCI, says that her favorite food is broccoli. I attribute this to BCCI’s healthy food – healthy body campaign where junk food and sweets are not promoted.”

Doctor Linda Che, whose child attends Brooklyn Child Care says, “It is important to introduce fruits and vegetables to children. BCCI compares fruits and vegetables to musical instruments – it’s a fun way for children to learn about their healthfulness. As a mother of two young children, practicing healthy eating habits is an important part of my children’s daily routine thanks to BCCI.”

Pre-K parent Abby states, “As a preschooler my son’s eating habits have grown through the diverse foods that are prepared and served, and staff are wonderful in engaging him to try new things. He also thoroughly enjoys the hands-on aspect of helping to “cook” various foods that are served, exploring new foods and the creative manner they are displayed.”

BCCI sets good examples for children, offers a variety of foods, teaches children about portion size, helps children know when they have had enough, follows a meal and snack schedule, makes meal and snack times special, assists picky eaters, encourages youngsters to try new foods and makes food fun! Fruits and vegetables are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin C so BCCI makes sure that parents are aware of the benefits and provides many fruit and vegetable options daily.

BCCI is NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children) accredited and has an outstanding reputation for helping children develop healthy eating habits and know the importance of exercise. Research shows that healthy eating can stabilize children’s energy, sharpen their minds, and even out their moods. So, at BCCI children eat healthy, run around in the huge outdoor playground while learning to be school ready. The message, “You are what you eat” is shared with students so that they learn at a very young age the importance of good nutrition.

Children flourish in a warm, nurturing environment in which math, science, health, nutrition, and physical activity are valued. In addition, students are provided with music, dance, art and foreign language classes.

Have your own story to share? Tag us on Twitter or Facebook with the hashtag #SchoolaSuccess so we can share your story.

Featured School: St. Margaret Mary Alacoque School in St. Louis, MO

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St. Margaret Mary Alacoque School in St. Louis, Missouri has raised more than $2,600 to date via Schoola. With these funds they’ve purchased an automated children’s defibrillator, which was necessary for one child in need, but can potentially benefit many children. Beyond this, they have goals to promote the health and wellness of all their students. They’ve formed a walking club and are raising money for new playground equipment.

The walking club has about 100 students who are actively participating. It’s also a great way for parents to get involved and help supervise. Students get points and prizes (usually a “dress down pass,” which means they can ditch their uniform for a day). And when they’ve walked 25 miles, at the end of the year they are eligible to enter a drawing to win baseball tickets.

St. Margaret Mary Alacoque is a private Catholic school that serves children preschool through eighth grade (three years to 14 years). They have 441 students, and are located in the suburbs of St. Louis. If you’d like to support their fundraising goals, you can shop their Schoola shop here.

Have your own Schoola story to share? Tag us on Facebook or Twitter with the hashtag #SchoolaSuccess.

Featured School: Jean Parker Elementary in San Francisco, CA

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Jean Parker Elementary is nestled snuggly in San Francisco’s historic Chinatown, and the student body of 280 are diverse, many new immigrants with Chinese as their first language. Schoola was a great fundraising option for Jean Parker because, rather than asking parents for monetary donations, they were able to participate in a school-wide clothing drive. These funds are going to support programs that would otherwise fall to the wayside.

To date, Jean Parker has raised nearly $1,000 through Schoola, which will fund a twice-yearly science assembly. These educational events hosted by scientists inspire children to pursue subjects they may otherwise have little knowledge of. Thank-you notes from students showed the impact of the assembly, some even excited about being a scientist when they grow up.

Jean Parker is still actively raising money for other programs–and you can shop their Schoola page to help support their fundraising. Other supported programs include a mobile computer lab to replace outdated technology and a YMCA coach to do physical education activities with the children, an important part of the day that can often be dismissed when funds are tight.

If you’re interested in doing a fundraiser at your own school, contact coach@schoola.com to set up a drive, or simply request a prepaid-postage donation bag. And if you have a Schoola fundraising story to tell, tweet @Schoola or tag us on Facebook with the hashtag #SchoolaSuccess. We want to hear from you, and share your story!

 

 

Featured School: McCluer High School in Florissant, MO

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Since 1986, McCluer High School students in the Ferguson-Florissant School District in Missouri have been participating in a two-week Travel Immersion Program. But the program doesn’t have ample funding; out of the nearly 1,300 students at McCluer, almost 80% qualify for a free or reduced lunch, so these are students who wouldn’t otherwise have an opportunity to travel abroad. Recently McCluer ran a clothing drive through Schoola to raise money for their program, and you can still shop their collection here, which has so far raised more than $600.

The program is designed to provide complete immersion in the language they’re studying at McCluer, as well as a hands-on cultural education experience. Students spend the first week traveling around the country, visiting places of historical and cultural importance, and the second week living with a host family, enjoying the daily culture and walking in the shoes of others.

The sought-after program is competitive, and only students McCluer believes will take full advantage of the language and cultural immersion, and who will be outstanding representatives of the community, are accepted. Students must receive positive teacher recommendations, have strong grades and excellent discipline records, and suburb school attendance.

The benefits of the Travel Immersion Program are immediately visible in the students who travel: their language skills, and overall communicative competence, improve greatly. Many students make cultural and personal connections that last their whole lives. Students share these stories and relationships with classmates and community members when they return to McCluer. Several students have gone on to major in French or Spanish and later to use their language skills in their professions as well.

Although less visible, the cultural competence and communication skills that these students utilize and develop while abroad help enhance the image of McCluer’s community. In other words, residents of the host countries get a meaningful, positive interaction with real, everyday American students, demonstrating the positive, hard-working, friendly side of McCluer’s community, state, and nation.

Again, to help raise funds for  McCluer’s Travel Immersion Program, make sure to shop their Schoola page!

 

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