Family

School fundraising dilemma

Dear Diane, our kids go to a decile-nine primary school, with limited government funding, so they're always fundraising. Every week there's a raffle or cards or calendars to buy and the annual school

Dear Diane,

our kids go to a decile-nine primary school, with limited government funding, so they’re always fundraising.

Every week there’s a raffle or cards or calendars to buy and the annual school fair is a massive extravaganza. It all gets very competitive as people try to outdo each other in terms of generosity.

Quite frankly, we can’t afford all this stuff. We pay our donation in full at the start of the year and I go in once a week to help sort the reading books, but in terms of forking out all the time it’s quite frankly impossible.

oy husband has problems with depression so he only works intermittently and I’m an artist so my income can be patchy. The only reason we live where we do is because my husband inherited our home. It’s nothing flash and needs heaps of work. What should I do Diane? This is really worrying me.

Susie, by email

dilemma

Dear Susie,

All children have the right to a free education in New Zealand. The donation you pay at the beginning of every school year is just that – a donation, both optional and tax deductible – whether your school brands it compulsory or not.

I wonder if it would be a good idea to tot up what you have to pay out during the year and see if it comes to more than your donation – or less.

Speak with the school and explain to them that you simply can’t manage this situation, but you wish to be supportive of the school. Say you also wish to avoid humiliation for your children by their not being able to participate in all of the fundraising throughout the year.

An excellent compromise would be for your children to be able to participate in the fundraising themselves. That way your family can be seen to support the school, so that you can hold your head high among other proud parents.

Let the school know that, at the end of the year, if there’s a difference between what has been spent in fundraising and what the school “fees” are, you will willingly give that to the school as a donation.

Get The Australian Woman’s Weekly NZ home delivered!  

Subscribe and save up to 38% on a magazine subscription.

Related stories