Washington, DC

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“Dear PoPville,

I was wondering if my fellow readers could shed light on fundraising in DC public schools. In the past couple of months I have been approached by children selling food or asking for money and claiming that the sale was for a school fundraiser. Here are three real examples of some of the things I have observed:

1) While sitting outside at the fountain in Columbia Heights a couple of weeks ago two kids, around 8 or 9 years old asked if I wanted to buy candy bars to help their school. They were not wearing school uniforms or jerseys, the candy looked like they had bought in bulk from Costco.

2) Krispy Kreme sales by teenagers at the entrance to the Farragut West Metro. This happens quite frequently in the summer and its always for “school fundraisers”.

3) Friday afternoon, the 27th, I was walking by the dogpark on 17th and S NW. Two teens, I want to say 15-16, approached and asked if I wanted to support their school’s marching band. A binder was thrust into my hands and it had a bunch of scribbled notes in it. Again, no uniforms, no official looking fundraiser materials.

Are these incidents scams or are they actual fundraisers for DCPS? I would like to support DCPS but when people approach me on the street, even if they are kids, I just assume I am being scammed. Does anyone know if these are legit?”

Any good tips for identifying if they are legit fundraisers or not?


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