The purpose of a school’s student council is to give students an opportunity to develop leadership by organizing and carrying out school activities and service projects. In addition to planning events that contribute to school spirit and community welfare, one of the most important roles of student councils is to raise funds to support the student body. Finding the best student council fundraising ideas that will get students excited to take part is key to the success of these events.
Here we share the best, proven ideas for elementary, middle, and high school councils.
Elementary School Student Council Fundraising Ideas
Elementary students are all about having fun! Plenty of fundraising ideas for elementary student councils are fun and welcoming for the young student body. Here are our top student council fundraising ideas for elementary schools.
All School Fun Runs
School fun runs are a fantastic way to get young students excited about being active. These elementary school fundraisers are also a great way to utilize peer-to-peer fundraising. With these initiatives, students register to participate, then they raise funds from neighbors, friends, and family to achieve their goal of finishing the run. Here are some fun run concepts:
- Color Runs: Color run fundraisers are fun for everyone involved. The kids wear white t-shirts to start. Checkpoints throughout the course where parents and volunteers throw colored powder make for a cheerful and exciting run with lots of surprises.
- Themed Runs: Adding a theme to your fun run adds to the fun and excitement, especially for young kids. Some fun run themes are Disney, superheroes, and historical figure-themed runs. The students that participate dress up in their favorite attire representing the theme and walk or run a certain number of laps.
- Pajama Runs: Running in athletic wear is ideal, but pajamas are the next best thing to comfortable workout attire. Students will have a reason for the well-deserved rest after the effort of doing the run.
- Physical Challenges and Obstacles: If you want to consider another dimension to give more excitement to the run, add physical challenges like an obstacle course. These can also help boost donations for the student council fundraising effort.
Reading Fundraisers and Challenges
Want to take the fundraising off the field and into the classroom? One student council fundraising idea for elementary schools takes the challenge to the books instead with a reading fundraiser. Have each student pledge to read a certain amount of books or a certain period of time. Like with active peer to peer and school crowdfunding campaigns, students then ask friends and family to donate towards their reading goals.
Student Council Fundraising Ideas for Middle Schools and High Schools
Active peer-to-peer events are still a great idea for middle and high school students. As students get older, the level of difficulty increases.
- Light and Neon Fun Runs: Middle and high school students enjoy these concept runs. Add fun elements to the race and after-party, such as a DJ and dancing. Light and neon runs are often hosted in the dark and use laser lights, strobe lights, or glow sticks.
- Holiday Runs: If you want to time the school fundraiser with a holiday, there are ample themes that can work with your run. For example, it can be Santa-themed, Cupid/Valentine’s Day themed, St. Patrick’s Day themed, or Easter Bunny-themed. You get the idea – virtually any holiday fundraising theme will get students excited.
- Zombie Lurches: This run can either be zombie-themed or a zombie chase, where the concept is similar to tag. There are two sides: zombies and humans that become zombies when tagged.
- Obstacle Courses Races: These challenges are growing in popularity with shows such as Tough Mudder, Spartan Race, and Warrior Dash. Have one right in the school’s backyard with obstacles that push the students to the next level.
- Dog Walks: Bring the pups along for this one! Have students participate with their families in a dog walk for a furry fundraiser with all the community dogs.
- Bike-a-thons: Does the school have an avid cycling group? Have the whole school join in on a fun fundraising affair with a bike-a-thon on local bike trails.
- Spin-a-thons: Same as a bike-a-thon, but with stationary bikes. The nice thing about hosting a spin-a-thon fundraiser is that your participants stay in one place.
More Active Sports Challenges
- Basketball Tournaments: Allow students and teachers to form teams to challenge each other until the last team is left standing.
- Flag Football Fundraisers: Host multiple games throughout the day to allow as many people as possible to participate.
- Hit-a-thon Challenges: If batting cages can’t be set up on-premise, research a local batting cage that can host a hit-a-thon as a school fundraiser.
Performance-Based Events and Challenges
- Karaoke Contests: Welcome students, teachers, and even parents to bring their vocal talents to a karaoke contest. Participants can pay to sing with a chance to win prizes. Create an opportunity to raise more funds by selling food and refreshments during the performances.
- Dance-a-Thons: With all of the latest trending dances out, from flossing to the Milly rock, why not do it for a good cause? Host a dance-a-thon and see how long students last doing their best moves.
- Talent Shows: The talent show is a classic student council activity. A talent show can be competition-style or showcase-style. For a competition, the audience pays an extra $1 – $5 to vote for the winners.
- Spelling Bees: Test your students’ spelling acumen with a spelling bee, but with an added flair. Make it a peer-to-peer spelling fundraiser with an open invitation and sell tickets to parents.
Product sales are always a popular school fundraiser, especially when adding a sales contest with prizes for top fundraisers. Why not sell school spirit wear that everyone wants? Offer a great shopping experience with our FREE online stores.
Features of our Simple Stores include:
- Individuals and classrooms can sell for your student group by enabling peer to peer functionality for your store
- Sales tax can be added to items
- Administer promo codes for discounted sales
- Fundraising thermometers track sales progress and excite supporters
- Promote fundraising sales via our free Text to Give feature
Here are some more sales-related fundraising ideas:
- Online Auctions: Auctions can be standalone events or an addition to other events. If sponsors can support the student council with high-value items such as theme park tickets or an all-inclusive dinner at a local restaurant, these can be auctioned off. Another spin on a school auction is to allow students to have fun with their favorite teachers and staff. Auction off an opportunity to pie the principal or dunk tank their favorite teacher.
- Community Yard Sales: This popular fundraiser allows students and staff to do some spring cleaning and donate their used home goods and clothes to the fundraising goal.
These events bring the school community together to enjoy themselves while raising money. Be sure to add refreshments and raffle ticket sales to boost revenues.
- Local Business Night: Support a local business and host a night out at the establishment in exchange for donating a certain amount of the proceeds to the middle school or high school student council fundraiser.
- Trivia Night or Bingo Night: Playing trivia and bingo never gets old. The trivia topics can be trending subjects, such as “Do You Know Your Memes?” and “Top Radio Hits.” Bingo can be played along the themes of “Know Your Teachers” or “Know Your Classmates,” with such topics as “Has a Dog” or “Drives a Motorcycle.”
- Car Wash or Dog Wash: Car washes are another classic student council fundraiser. Why not add in a dog wash on the sidelines?
With these enjoyable fundraising ideas that will generate lots of excitement and participation from the student body, the calendar for your elementary, middle, or high school student council fundraising will easily fill up.
Looking for Student Council Fundraising Ideas During COVID?
Our virtual fundraising platform has the tools you need – for free! There are lots of innovative features that work for COVID and beyond:
- A fundraising home page that links to all your school fundraising campaigns and events
- Live Stream video platform for virtual fundraising events
- Text to Donate (US organizations and phones only)
- Ability to incorporate peer-to-peer fundraising with personal and team fundraising pages into more campaign types, such as online sales campaigns and raffles
- Donor perks can be given to crowdfunding donors at pre-defined levels (ie, donate $100 and get a free t-shirt)
- Support for digital wallets via ApplePay and GooglePay