GRAND CANYON, Ariz. - As part of a community service project for students participating in the annual Grand Canyon Youth river trip in May, students counted 1,650 boxtops Feb. 3.
Grand Canyon School (GCS) collects the boxtops to use for the General Mill's Boxtops for Education and Campbell's Soup Labels for Education incentive programs.
With each boxtop having a net worth of .10 cents each, GCS collected $165 from the incentive program, with an additional 171 bonus points bringing the grand total to $182. The Labels for Education program labels are worth between one and 10 points each, which can be redeemed for classroom supplies, sports equipment and other school related materials.
The Boxtops for Education points are redeemed for cash, which the school can decide what they want the money to be used toward.
"Twice a year they (General Mills) cut their checks and the check comes to the school," said GCS Boxtops and Label Program Coordinator Lori Rommel. "We had to develop a system of accountability for the boxtops.
So the forms go out to the teachers and they explain what they want to use it (the money) for and how it will benefit the students. The form is submitted to me and it goes before a student body and gets approved and they fill out a requisition and it goes through purchasing and they make sure it comes out of the boxtops account."
Rommel said money from the program has been used to purchase a portable listening center for the kindergarten class and has been used to buy incentives for the third grade class.
GCS has participated in the Boxtops for Education and Labels for Education program for more than 10 years. Rommel said the programs has always been a fun way for the community to be involved and support the school and its students.
"It's another source of funding and its community involvement," she said. "The whole community can feel like by cutting off their label from a Ziploc bag box that they are contributing to the well-being of the school."
The program is experiencing a few changes this year after Campbell's Soup Company decided to phase out the Labels for Education program earlier this month.
According to the company, participation in the program has steadily declined.
"Sadly, it is at the point where we have no choice but to make the very difficult decision to wind down the program," Campbell's Soup Company said in a letter to program coordinators.
The program will continue through the 2015-2016 Labels for Education program year with no changes to its participating products and offers.
Additionally, Campbell's said it will continue to support children through an annual sweepstakes called Grand Stand for Schools.
Rommel said GCS will continue with the program until it is phased out later this year.
"After this year I'm going to make a clean stop and not continue forward with the Labels for Education," she said.
Rommel said the Labels for Education program will not have a significant impact on the school's incentive program.
"The (points) do not add up quickly and you need quite a few points to get anything," she said.
The Boxtops for Education program will continue and Rommel plans to continue with the program.
Drop off locations for boxtops are located at the office at GCS, Kaibab Learning Center, Grand Canyon Recreation Center, Delaware North offices and Xanterra Human Resource office.
More information about either of the programs is available from Lori Rommel at (928) 638-2461.