Ok, I’ll admit it. I’m not the greatest parent in the world. At least when it comes to cutting out all the little box top logos on virtually everything my kids eat.

I know, I know. Writing for this school fundraising blog, I should be right on top of it. Scissors in a holster, ready to clip at a moment’s notice. Right?

Well, sadly, I am not that guy. Sometimes I remember, but usually only when my kids notice one and bug me to cut it out.

So, I need to get better at this. I know how important these little box tops can be when they are all combined together with everybody else’s box tops. I should be doing my part.

Then I thought that it might help to go to the Box Tops 4 Education website and see what kind of inspiration they can give me. They actually have all sorts of great information that can get folks like me fired up to start cutting out every box top in the house. They even suggest going to other people’s houses (like grandma or Great Aunt Sue) to clip out their box tops, too!

If you don’t believe in the power of box tops, here is a success story I found on their site.

A New Jersey elementary school’s creativity engages parents and raises cash

The kids had a choice: Would they prefer to see their principal and their gym teacher race down the hallway on scooters or fight each other in inflated sumo wrestler costumes?

Sumo wrestling prevailed. Kids were admitted for free (but getting a racing-or-wrestling ballot required turning in 25 Box Tops), and their parents—hundreds of them–paid a $2 admission fee. Adding in concession sales, the evening netted $1,000 to buy educational equipment.

It’s one of many ways in which H & M Potter Elementary School in Bayville, N.J., has kept the community actively involved in the Box Tops program. They hold monthly contests—some suggested by others, some of their own design. (“We like to keep it new, not do the same thing over and over again,” says the principal, Jeffery Z.) Contest winners are lavished with attention, as are the advanced teaching tools bought with Box Tops earnings—interactive whiteboards, digital projector systems, etc.—in the school newsletter as well as at PTA meetings and other school events.

Bayville is a low-income area, and the parents have embraced the chance to contribute to their kids’ education through Box Tops. They hand in bags stuffed with Box Tops, and once a contest has ended they seek out Principal Z. for details about the next one. A parent employed by public works is known to Dumpster-dive to retrieve unclaimed Box Tops. The school has gotten senior centers and other community locales collecting Box Tops on its behalf. In 2008-09, the school earned more than $7,800 from its participation in Box Tops for Education.

“In an era that we’re losing funding for programming,” Principal Z. says, “this is really critical for keeping the school afloat.”

This could happen at your school. All you have to do it have some passion, a vision, and a will to inspire everyone to keep clipping!

If you’ve never been to the Box Tops 4 Education website, I highly suggest you give it a look. They have a great forum section, with all sorts of advice for those interested in school fundraising.