Some local organizations have been seeking donations for Anson County Schools, but Superintendent Michael Freeman says they may not be legit.
Freeman sent out a message last week to warn residents those falsely soliciting money “on behalf” of the school system.
“My office continues to discover situations where agencies and/or individuals are soliciting funds of behalf of Anson County Schools without proper approval,” Freeman said in his message. “Recently, a number of local businesses and faith-based agencies have reported attempts for funds to be donated for the ACS to support various student projects.”
Freeman went on to say that some of the companies soliciting funds have not been approved by the district office nor any school-based administrator.
Attempts were made to sell doughnuts, collect monetary donations for advertisement on discounts cards and athletic event spirit items — promises supporting the schools that do not materialize.
“It is not fair to our schools nor the contributor when this occurs,” he said. “Businesses, churches and citizens support Anson County Schools in awesome ways, and these people should not be taken advantage of.”
Freeman also said that their support is needed and he wants to ensure that all donations are used appropriately to support students
The system is establishing a procedure, requiring approval for fundraising activities, according to Freeman. The general public will be able to make contact with the main office to find out if a particular fundraiser has been approved by the superintendent, school principal or athletic director. Eventually, the list of approved fundraising activities will be posted on the school system’s website and social media.
“We will also issue alerts if my office has knowledge of fundraising occurring that has not been approved within the guidelines stipulated in the Anson County Board of Education Fundraising Policy,” Freeman said.
Only designated staff are allowed to approve fundraising, he said.
“When this requirement is respected, we will be able to maintain an updated list of fundraisers that will stipulate the beginning and ending times for the fundraiser,” Freeman added.
This applies to any group selling or collecting funds for Anson County Schools — athletic teams, parent-teacher organizations, school clubs and athletic foundations.
“I want parents and community members to know that fundraising is needed to support our students and all of these efforts are greatly appreciated,”he said. “I also want them to know that it is my intention to ensure that the revenue they generate is truly used in Anson County for children attending our schools based on the approved purpose of the fundraiser.”
Freeman added that, sadly, some companies collect large donations and only a small percentages actually ends up being donated to the schools.
“I believe our community would like to see a larger percentage of their money remaining in Anson County for our schools,” he said.
The superintendent issued a caution for anyone who is approached by individuals, businesses or agencies soliciting funds for any ACS need: “You should investigate this matter to make sure the donations are truly being solicited for the benefit of children enrolled in Anson County Schools.
To verify if funds being solicited have been legally approved based on board policy, call 704-694-4417, or email Anne Hyatt at email@example.com or Michael Freeman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I want to thank our community for the tremendous support provided to our schools, and we have very successful fundraising occurring that is very beneficial,” Freeman said. “Local school supply drives are wonderful; and some groups collect coats, clothing, personal need items, and food for our students and this is greatly appreciated.”