Information Regarding the Law As of July 1, 2008, all school support organizations that solicit funds/fundraise in pursuit of their mission to support schools must comply with a new Tennessee law, known as the School Support Organization Financial Accountability Act, or SSOFAA. According to SSOFAA, all districts must post or publish a list of recognized school support organizations each year. (TCA 49-2-605)
According to the law, a School Support Organization is defined as “a booster club, foundation, parent teacher association, parent teacher organization, parent teacher support association, or any other nongovernmental organization or group of persons whose primary purpose is to support a school district, school, school club, or academic, arts, athletic, or social activities related to a school, that collects or receives money, materials, property or securities from students, parents, or members of the general public.” (TCA 49-2-603)
These organizations are required to be authorized by the Director of Schools. Such authorization must be obtained via a written agreement prior to any and all specific fundraising activities. The written agreement for authorization must be renewed annually. All fundraising activities must be approved by the respective school principal each school year.
Any school support organization which has not been authorized by the Director of Schools through formal agreement may not engage in fundraising for a school, school club, etc.. Any unauthorized group shall not use the name or logo of the individual school or the Putnam County School System/Board of Education for any purpose.
This law does not apply to individuals who simply wish to donate funds to a school, nor does it apply to any business or industry, whose primary purpose is not to raise funds for a school, which chooses to donate funds. The law also does not apply to fundraising conducted by the actual school or school clubs.