17 Best School Fundraising Ideas in 2024 for Rapid Success

Best School Fundraising Ideas

Oops!!! Running out of funds to provide quality education and essential services to students? Keep your cool and explore the benefits of school fundraisers right away.

School authorities often need to fundraise to support extracurricular activities, scholarships, and improve facilities and resources to enrich students’ academic experiences.

To do so, you need to get in touch with the community, or, in other words, the donors. It’s tough to find profitable school fundraising ideas, as the donor base is a mix of guardians, students, teachers, or even the local community.

Finding the best fundraising ideas for schools is a hectic job. Because along with raising funds, you should also focus on highlighting positive impacts on students and improving their leadership and teamwork abilities.

On the other hand, you need to make the events exciting as well. You can’t just repeat the events you organized before. That’ll make things boring!

So you need to come up with something interesting and unique. To unleash your fundraising potential, we’ve compiled a list of fundraising ideas for elementary, middle school, and high school.

Let’s dive into the 17 best school fundraising ideas with some implementation tips for making a successful fundraiser that the whole community will surely love.

17 Best school fundraising ideas in 2024

As mentioned, we’ve listed some of the most unique and easy fundraising ideas for schools covering elementary, middle, and high schools. For easy navigation, we’ll break it down into three sections.

  • Elementary school fundraising ideas
  • Middle school fundraising ideas
  • Fundraising ideas for high schools

You can go straight to the one you’re looking for or read the full blog to get some assistance with strategies according to it.

Elementary school fundraising ideas

Fundraising in elementary schools often involves organizing events or campaigns that engage students, parents, teachers, and the wider community. The goal is to raise funds while also fostering a sense of community involvement.

Fundraising efforts in elementary schools require careful planning, coordination, and participation from various stakeholders. It’s essential to choose fundraising activities that are safe, age-appropriate, and align with the values and needs of the school community.

Treasure hunt

If you want to organize a creative school fundraiser full of excitement, then “Treasure Hunt” is the one. Organizing a treasure hunt can improve kids’ vision and analytical thinking capacity. 

Set an entry fee for the event and hide items around the school area. Develop a set of riddles or clues that lead students to the hidden items. Make sure the riddles are challenging yet solvable for elementary school students.

Divide the school areas into different search zones where items will be hidden. Set some safety guidelines to stay within the designated areas and avoid dangerous areas. Parents and teachers can work as volunteers.

Assign students to work as a team and mix it by class, grade, and age to promote interaction among them. This’ll give them a chance to demonstrate their teamwork, improve their problem-solving ability and communication skills as well.

treasure hunt school fundraising idea

Make sure to offer a prize at the end of the event to whoever or the team finds the treasure!

Treasure hunts are one of those cheap school fundraising ideas where you can raise more donations with less investment. It fits in any type of school, and you can set the difficulty level based on the participants.

Pajama day

It’s a simple yet effective elementary school fundraiser idea with almost zero investment. Charge a fee per student to come to school wearing pajamas. The fee can be as low as $1, $2, or $5.

Add more fun by arranging an event on this day. You can get the most out of the event by turning it into a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign.

Invite the guardians and teachers to come along and create their personal fundraising page, reach out to their friends and family members, and ask for donations. Harness the power of social media for fundraising to make this event more visible.

Take advantage of WordPress plugins like WP Social Ninja to connect more people.

Make it an annual fundraiser to gain excitement from every grade!

Art and Craft Day

Kids love doing arts and crafts. A craft day is one of the most innovative school fundraising ideas. Encourage students to be creative and design their own cards, decorate face masks, create jewelry, or explore painting and let their inner Picasso shine.

They can do it either in groups or with parents that family members, community members, or the public can purchase. Invite the local art supply store to be a part of the event by contributing some art supplies.

It’s a wonderful way to foster artistic skills and individuality while also contributing to fundraising efforts.

art and craft fundraiser

Field day

In the spring, when the weather gets warmer, it’s the perfect season to organize a field day. It’s an excellent way to bring children and their parents together on the same ground.

In a world where everyone is busy with their gadgets, a field day is full of outside activity.

Pick a sunny day, prepare your school field, invite all the students and their family members, consider inviting their neighbors also, and encourage participation with their kids. You can also expand the list of participants by inviting the local community.

Be creative while designing games or activities that appeal to both children and adults and make them more active and engaged.

To make it a profitable fundraising idea for school, utilize the equipment you already have, or opt for games and activities that don’t require any gear.

Hosting a variety of traditional games such as tug of war, water balloon tosses, potato sack races, obstacle courses, and dodgeball is a fantastic way to engage students and families in a fun-filled event. 

Set an entry fee or charge per game. To earn more, consider selling lemonade, chilled watermelon, and ice cream in the schoolyard.

potato sack race

Alphabet games

Alphabet games or spelling bees are some easy fundraising ideas for schools where students learn and let you earn with more fun. Organizing an alphabet game is simple and cheap as well.

Encourage all the students to participate and their family members to support them. Charge an entrance fee for this healthy competition as well as tickets for parents who come to watch their children’s performances.

It’s a fantastic elementary school fundraiser idea that improves students’ vocabulary skills.

Each child or team, in turn, is asked to spell a different word, and they can recite their answers or write them on cardboard. Or you can randomly arrange all the alphabets on a table and give them a word to make from it.

Have a prize for the winning team at the end of the event.

spelling bee school fundraiser

Middle school fundraising ideas

There are some different and unique middle school fundraising ideas, too. Kids are getting older, which opens up a lot of options. 

The events you can organize for elementary schools are suitable for middle schools as well. Apart from them, here are some top ideas that must be tried.

Dress-up day

Organizing a dress-up day or no-uniform day is an interesting thing to do in middle school. Who doesn’t love to dress like a superhero or a movie character? Many middle school students are fascinated by Marvel and Disney movies or DC comic books.

Then why not host a special day and give them a chance to be creative and dress up like their favorite character?

Additionally, you could decide on a theme for the fundraiser and charge attendees a nominal fee to participate.

By paying a participation fee, students can come to school dressed as they like instead of their regular uniforms.

Fundraiser ideas for schools like this can foster creativity and socialization among students and enrich their school experience.

Obstacle course

This type of school fundraiser idea tests students’ agility and makes them physically active. Students from all the classes can participate in an obstacle course.

You can literally use anything to create obstacles. Plan an obstacle course race featuring challenges such as climbing ropes and walls, balancing on beams, sack races, climbing stairs, tackling mud pits, jumping through tires, etc.

This school fundraising idea is very engaging and entertaining as well. Promote the event using social media in the locality.

Select a date, prepare the field, and design your obstacles. Participants will pay a certain amount of money in exchange for their chance to complete the course. Reward the winner with a prize for the fastest completion.

obstacle course fundraising

Host a thon

You can arrange different types of a-thons on your school campus. Read-a-thon is one of the most common ideas for school fundraisers.

Arrange a read-a-thon where students collect pledges or donations based on the number of books they read or the amount of time they spend reading.

It’s an interesting and educational way to encourage reading while also raising money to support the school library or fund educational programs.

A walk-a-thon is another cool school fundraiser where students will come to school on a selected day or week by walking instead of taking any vehicle. Ask them to donate the saved money by not using any vehicles.

You can also organize a hit-a-thon, which is a great fundraising idea for school sports teams. Participants will raise money from the audience each time they hit a basket.

Talent show

A talent show is one of the best fundraising ideas for schools because it gives students a chance to showcase their talents. Students from elementary and middle schools are naturally shy.

They don’t feel the courage to perform on the stage. A talent show organized by the school can help them overcome their nervousness and motivate them to perform.

Let there be various categories, such as singing, dancing, acting, comedy, etc. Charge a registration fee for the participants and sell tickets to the attendees as well.

Sell snacks and drinks at the event to add some extra money to the total fund.

Quiz day

One of the best ways to raise money in school is by arranging a healthy and friendly quiz day. It engages students in a fun and educational activity while raising funds.

Divide students into teams and prepare a list of age-appropriate questions covering diverse topics. This could include subjects like general knowledge, history, science, literature, sports, and more.

Charge a registration fee for each student or in a group. Promote the quiz day school fundraiser within the school community and locality through posters, announcements, and social media.

Highlight the educational and fun aspects of the event to attract participants. Add more fun by inviting parents to take part in a different format of the quiz.

It’s a good fundraising idea for school that promotes teamwork, critical thinking, and knowledge sharing among students while raising funds. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

quiz day school fundraising

Multicultural function

Arranging a multicultural function is one of the most common school fundraising ideas that includes a variety of events. Almost every year, schools organize a cultural day while celebrating the sports day event.

You can take advantage of the day by including a donation program in it. Every culture has food, sweets, traditions, and fashion to be proud of!

Host an event and encourage the students to showcase the richness of their culture. Let them share their local meals, dances, clothes, and other traditions that make them unique. This will promote mutual respect for all cultures around us.

This fundraising idea for school has great potential. Consider inviting the local community and alumni to be a part of the event by donating an entry fee.

It’s a fantastic way to bring in some extra cash and celebrate the community’s diversity at the same time. You can even sell school merchandise at the event to boost the overall fundraising efforts.

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Fundraising ideas for high schools

As the years go by, the kids grow up and move to high school. Now you need fundraising ideas for high schools that involve older students and open up more exciting opportunities for raising donations.

Sports day

Sports day is a universal event for each educational institution. Every year, schools organize a sports day at their campus. You can add some spice here by adding a donation campaign to it.

Sports days are usually designed with various types of games. Students love to play on their school grounds with their friends. Even those who don’t play regularly get encouraged to make their mark. 

Select a sunny day, create hype by scheduling the day over a few weeks, design a variety of games that can be played both individually and in teams, and set a registration fee for each event.

Involving parents and teachers in the event will add more fun and more cash to the campaign. Make sure to award a prize to the winner for each type of game.

Annual sports day school fundraiser

Hostage a teacher

It’s one of the funniest and most unique fundraising ideas for schools, where students can lock a teacher for a duration of one period in return for a specific amount of money that will go to the welfare of the school.

Students always dream about a free period in school. They’ll love this school fundraising idea and take this opportunity instantly, for sure. This will add more joy and make their school life more exciting.

Donation drive

A donation is one of the most useful fundraising ideas for any organization. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a nonprofit, a sports organization, a charitable organization, or an educational institution looking to raise donations.

A donation drive is a good fit as a school fundraiser too. It includes book drives, shoe drives, uniform drives, etc.

Ask your students to donate their books that are no longer in reading and sell them to the nearest library that sells second-hand books at low prices to the underprivileged. You’ll get a fair amount of money by selling the books.

You can also arrange a shoe drive and collect new, used, and gently worn shoes from the students, parents, and teachers. Partner with a shoe drive fundraiser and make money from the donated shoes.

You can collect old uniforms that are no longer worn and sell them at a low price to less privileged students.

donation drive

Principal challenge

Principals are typically known for their serious behavior and authoritative character. Involving them in a fundraising program can be the most demanded thing.

Students respect their principals, but they also want to see them in embarrassing moments. Challenging the principal to do some hilarious tasks could be one of the most effective fundraising ideas for schools that engage students the most.

Set a big yet achievable goal and announce that if the goal is reached, then the school principal will do a silly stunt. It can be coloring his hair, kissing a pig, dressing up like an alien, doing a chicken dance, or other embarrassing challenges.

The more outrageous the challenge, the more motivated students are to donate and reach the goal.

Sell school merchandise

Selling merchandise is a key school fundraising idea to improve the spirit and popularity of the school while raising money. Every school has its own identity, with logos, colors, mottos, etc. that differentiate it from others.

Why not make them an asset and start selling them to the students and their families?

Sell school merchandise like T-shirts, hats, mugs with school logo, water bottles, backpacks, notebooks, stickers, etc. You can sell them in school, at a fundraiser event, or even by incorporating them into any online store. And thanks to platforms like Printful or Gelato, creating custom merchandise is simple now.

Indeed, selling merchandise stands out as one of the most profitable fundraising ideas for high schools to raise money, as you can sell them at any event organized by the school!

merchandise selling school fundraising idea

Car wash

Car washing is a proven idea for fundraising for charity, sports teams, or even schools. People love to make cars look shiny. You can use this opportunity as a school fundraiser idea in exchange for giving a service.

Host a car wash event at the schoolyard. Invite students to take responsibility and promote the event online and offline as much as you can. Because the more cars that come through, the more your school will make money.

Contact a local business to sponsor the cleaning materials, like soaps, buckets, sponges, etc., in exchange for free advertising. Have loud music to keep the event alive.

Take a fair amount of money from the car owners after each wash.

How Paymattic can help you?

Paymattic is a WordPress plugin mostly known for its advanced feature of accepting donations and payments worldwide. If you’re wondering how Paymattic can assist you in arranging any school fundraiser, let me explain it to you in a few words.

On a quiz day, you can reduce the cost by making it an online competition using Paymattic. This plugin allows you to use their radio field to create any type of multiple-choice game.

Registration for an event is the first step in implementing any fundraising idea. Using this multipurpose plugin, you can effortlessly create a user registration form and let the students decide the event they want to participate in. Even, it also offers built-in registration forms to make the process simpler than ever.

Not only this, but you can also accept the registration or entry fees using this plugin seamlessly.

Wrapping up

There are countless options to explore while fundraising for school. Whenever you’re about to implement any school fundraising ideas, make sure they capture students’ interest and motivate them to participate fully.

Try these fundraising strategies to connect your initiatives with students, guardians, and community members and unlock their full potential.

Ensure that you use the perfect fundraising software to make the online donation process even simpler.

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