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Fundraising projects should support the goals of PTA and be related to the educational, charitable, and philanthropic purposes. PTA shouldn't be just about fundraising. When planning the year’s activities, try to use the 3-to-1 Rule: There should be at least three non-fundraising programs aimed at helping parents or children or advocating for school improvements, for every one fundraiser.

Fundraisers should involve as many members as possible and be fun. Try not to burden the school staff or parent volunteers, or compete with other programs, PTAs, schools, or community events. Children should never be used to sell door-to-door or exploited to raise funds. It cannot involve commercial or advertising obligations.

The fundraising project must have the approval of the membership in advance of the event, and the vote must be recorded in the minutes. Projects must have a specific purpose. If the fundraising project is ongoing (e.g. e-scrip), it must be approved each year by the association membership.

The noncommercial policy requires that the name “PTA” or the names of PTA officers not be used in conjunction with the commercial activities of other organizations, including, but not limited to, the promotion of their goods and services. Continuing or repeat projects produced in cooperation with a commercial business may be seen as PTA endorsement of that business so try to avoid using of the name of PTA along with the business name in promotions. 

  • Don't make a qualitative judgment of the sponsor’s products or services; i.e., Joe’s widgets are the best!

  • Don't include comparative language or language that implies good quality in the acknowledgment; i.e., Joe’s widgets are so much better than Bob’s widgets!

  • Don't permit the sponsor to write the acknowledgment of thanks; i.e., Thank you, ABC PTA, for endorsing our product!

  • Don't ask members or the public to buy the products or services of the sponsor; i.e., Go to Joe’s for your widgets!

  • Don't endorse a product or service; i.e., Our PTA supports Joe’s.


Consider activities that have a positive impact on students, families and the community. Many ideas exist for successful fundraising. PTA leaders should always consult the current California State PTA Insurance and Loss Prevention Guide when planning any PTA activity, especially athletic* activities, and follow appropriate financial guidelines.

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