Parents fundraise $357m for ‘free’ schooling

NZ Herald 10 May 2014
Parents are raising more than $357 million a year in donations and fundraising to support the “free” schooling system.

Schools in wealthier neighbourhoods are bringing in an average of $740 a student each year in donations and fundraising, figures released to the Weekend Herald show.

The amount raked in by voluntary donations has climbed – but so, too, has the millions of dollars brought in through increasingly sophisticated fundraising drives.

School fairs at some Auckland primary schools have developed from baking and coconut shys to include silent auctions for donated items including overseas holidays, with the most successful bringing in more than $100,000.

Others are targeting ex-pupils for ongoing support, something traditionally associated with the tertiary sector.