710R-C - Crowdfunding

  • Crowd fundraising (online) involves funding a project or securing donations of goods from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. School personnel are required to share their needs with their principal/administrator and seek traditional fundraising opportunities before turning to crowdfunding as an avenue for acquiring items. Crowdfunding sites shall only be used for the purpose of obtaining items that support the district’s educational philosophy or needs. Using crowdfunding as a means of raising money (cash or check) to be sent directly to a school or staff member for the purchase of items, is prohibited. If a staff member uses the name, logo, or other symbol of a school/district as part of a crowdfunding campaign, the school/district has a vital interest in ensuring that the campaign does not reflect poorly on the school/district. If a crowdfunding platform is chosen, school personnel shall adhere to the guidelines and procedures as set forth in this regulation. Employees who violate this regulation may face disciplinary action up to dismissal.

    Only pre-approved crowdfunding sites found on the Frederick County Public Schools Crowdfunding Request Form can be used. Sites must be approved by the Superintendent, Executive Director of Finance, or their designee.

    The following guidelines shall be followed for any crowdfunding campaign:

    1. A Crowdfunding Request Approval Form must be completed and approved by appropriate staff prior to any fundraiser being posted on a crowdfunding site.

    2. Frederick County Public Schools does not support or approve the use of any site for the purpose of raising monies (cash or check) to be sent directly to a staff member or school.

    3. Campaigns will be in the name of the school/district, NOT a Frederick County Public Schools’ student or employee. All crowdfunding activities must be for the benefit of a class, school, or the school district, not a specific student, employee, or individual.

    4. Written parental consent must be secured and maintained before any image or voice recordings or other similar identifying information of any student(s) is posted online. Any identifying information which links any image or voice recordings or other similar identifying information to any particular student(s) shall not be included in any crowdfunding effort. Classroom photos or narratives that provide enough information that make it possible to identify any student(s) are prohibited.

    5. All items received through the crowdfunding campaign are the property of Frederick County Public Schools and must be used for the stated purpose. All FCPS inventory policies and procedures must be followed.

    6. Items received through the crowdfunding campaign must be sent directly from the crowdfunding site to the school or department and not to an individual.

    7. If the fundraiser includes:

      1. hardware, software, or web-based subscriptions purchases, prior approval must be obtained from the Director of Technology;

      2. land improvements, building improvements, repairs, renovations or construction on school property, prior approval must be obtained from the Director of Facility Services;

      3. items to supplement the instructional program, prior approval must be obtained from the Director of Elementary Instructional Services, the Director of Middle and Secondary Instructional Services or the Director of Special Instructional Services.
        Additional information may be requested from the campaign sponsor prior to receiving a decision.

    8. Promoting a crowdfunding site or campaign through Frederick County Public Schools’ communications vehicles including flyers, newsletters, social media, websites, and school division email accounts is prohibited.

    9. The Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent of Instruction, Assistant Superintendent for Administration, principals, department directors, and the Executive Director of Finance have the authority to deny any crowdfunding request.

    10. The employee running the crowdfunding campaign is responsible for making sure proper acknowledgment is sent to all donors.

    11. The crowdfunding campaign must be removed when the campaign goal is met.

    12. The approving administrator is responsible for ensuring that the proposed crowdfunding campaign does not violate Frederick County Public Schools’ policies and regulations and any federal or state law, including those governing the confidentiality of student information.

    13. Documents must be maintained at the school/department level and include

      1. Crowdfunding Approval Form signed by all appropriate parties,

      2. picture of the items once received,

      3. written detail of the items requested,

      4. screenshot of online campaign page,

      5. all signed agreements,

      6. list of donors.

    14. Requests to add a crowdfunding site to the list of pre-approved sites should be directed to the Executive Director of Finance. The request must provide justification as to why an existing, pre-approved crowdfunding site cannot be used. An individual’s preference of sites is not sufficient to warrant approval. Such requests must include a copy of the site’s user agreement and all conditions and disclosures regarding the use of the site. The Executive Director of Finance will communicate whether the use of the site has been approved to the requestor and their principal/director. If approved, the site will be added to the list of pre-approved sites on the Frederick County Public Schools Crowdfunding Request Form.


    Cross Reference(s):
    Policy 704P, Operations and Finance- Gifts, Bequests, and Donations

    Regulation 704R, Operations and Finance- Gifts, Bequests, and Donations


    Adopted: April 18, 2019 (Effective July 1, 2019)