School Fundraising Ideas: The Top Ways to Raise Money school fundraiser ideas

It’s an unfortunate fact that many schools are massively underfunded, given the importance of the work they do.

Funding, and a lot of it, is needed to facilitate the experiences schools provide to students. From the baseline education standards to sports teams, the arts, field trips, and other supplementary activities– money is needed to provide these experiences!

Because of this, the responsibility often falls on schools, PTO/PTA/Booster Clubs, and even parents and teachers, to raise the needed funding. This is a huge undertaking, from planning to simply coming up with fundraising ideas to begin with! school fundraiser ideas

We’ve pulled together a comprehensive list of fundraising ideas, broken down by age range and season. We’re going to explore fundraising ideas in the following categories:

  • How to Make The Most of Your School Fundraising Campaign
  • Fundraising Ideas for Elementary Schools
  • Fundraising Ideas for Middle Schools
  • Fundraising Ideas for High Schools
  • Holiday Fundraising Ideas for Schools

First, we’re going to explore how you can optimize your fundraising, in general, to make the most of every fundraiser. Then, if you see a particular fundraiser grouping that applies to your school, feel free to jump ahead. If not, continue reading for ideas to help your school reach its financial goals!

How to Make the Most of Your School Fundraising Campaign

Before we dive into the fundraising ideas, you need to make sure your school is ready and able to bring them to live and effectively raise money. Follow these best practices to make sure you get the most out of your school fundraising campaign.


Even if you’ve crafted the best possible fundraiser for your students, one that has benefits for both the involved families and your school, you’re unlikely to reach your fundraising goals if you’re not effectively communicating the opportunity.

That’s why you should create a marketing plan before your campaign starts. As you brainstorm your strategies, think about how you can connect with different community members. For example, you might:

  • Send fundraising flyers home with students
  • Post flyers on community bulletin boards
  • Include an announcement in your school’s email newsletter
  • Post announcements on social media
  • Publish digital ads on your website
  • Publish ads in your local newspaper

No matter how you market your school’s fundraisers, you’ll need to make sure your collateral is eye-catching and informative. Between teaching and making the learning experience the best it can be, your school’s team likely doesn’t have time outside of the classroom to learn the intricacies of graphic design and then create these materials. That’s where a graphic designer comes in handy!

We recommend Kwala, a team of design experts who deliver quality graphic design services. They’ll work with you to create eye-catching flyers, banners, and more — whether you want to lean into digital or print advertising for your school’s campaigns. With unlimited revisions, they’ll keep designing until you have the perfect collateral for your school!

In any case, communicate with supporters early and frequently to make sure every potential donor is aware of your fundraiser. The school year is a particularly busy time with homework and after-school activities galore. Make sure your fundraising opportunities aren’t getting lost in the mix by communicating regularly.

Educate donors about matching gifts!

Corporate matching gift programs are when a company pledges to match the nonprofit donations its employees make. This means that a donor can effectively donate twice as much without actually spending any extra on their end.

The process is simple: a supporter makes a donation, they submit this donation to their employer, their employer contacts the nonprofit to verify the donation and, if verified, makes a matching gift to your school. 

However, as simple as the process may seem, it’s still surprisingly underutilized by many organizations,  as many employees are unaware of these programs existence at all.

Your biggest challenge then becomes educating parents and other supporters about these programs. Then, these donors can check their eligibility and be fully informed of all of the opportunities they have to give!

One of the easiest ways to discover these programs, and then educate donors accordingly, is through using a dedicated matching gift tool.

Tools such as those offered by Double the Donation equip you with a searchable matching gift database, that you can then embed directly on your website or online giving form. Then, when parents or other supporters give to your school’s fundraisers, they can easily search their own eligibility and discover the next steps for submitting a match request.