Bringing Home the Bank

This year’s penny-day fundraiser was a success
Sophomore Mercedes Sherrick pouring pennies into a Penny Day coin-collecting bucket.
Sophomore Mercedes Sherrick pouring pennies into a Penny Day coin-collecting bucket.

Lancaster High School’s sophomore class sponsored the annual Penny Day, raising over three thousand dollars. Throughout the week of Penny Day, classes donated pocket change each class period so that they could earn the opportunity to watch fun flicks by the end of the week. The fundraiser goes towards the cost of school dances like the prom, Adopt A Family, Ghoulish Gales, and other events. Many students and teachers said they enjoy the event because it’s a break from academics and has become a traditional rivalry between classes.

LHS sophomore class officer Connor D’Amico said that high competition means more money.

LHS sophomore class officer Connor D’amico.

“From what I’ve seen we’ve raised a lot of money this year from teachers putting class periods against each other to see who will raise the most. It was a lot of fun to see that play out,” said D’amico. 

“Last year my 6th period and 7th period class tried to make the most [money] so the whole class could earn snacks. It’s a smart move to raise money fast. One class brought in $90 and another brought in $80. Since they both made so much money, they both ended up earning the reward,” he said. 

Lancaster High School English teacher Dianna Galdyk was one of the teachers that took this approach. Galadyk said she helped engage students in joining in the event by rewarding the winning class period with a refreshing summer snack. 

LHS teacher Dianna Galadyk.

“I bribed everyone with ice cream and told them that the class period with the most money brought in is the best class. First period is in the game, they went out after school to check out what all the other classes made, and one kid swears he’s gonna beat the class with the highest – he claims he’s going to bring in enough money to win the ice cream,” said Galadyk. 

The rivalry between students in various class periods can get intense.

LHS sophomore class officer Paige Franklin.

“So many students and teachers are involved and take the Penny Day name seriously. One student brought in around a thousand pennies; in my seventh period science class we had eighty dollars total, and everyone’s trying to win with the most money raised,” said sophomore class officer Paige Franklin.

On Penny Day, students learn to build their awareness of community service and its importance, the idea of working together for a good cause, and that they have class officers to represent and guide them.

“Overall the students love it because they want to watch movies. I’m trying to build up the idea that it’s not just a movie day, you have to earn the movie day. It’s a fundraiser, and some are starting to understand this fundraiser’s not just a day to relax and watch movies,” said Amanda Thompson, the sophomore class sponsor. 

LHS teacher Amanda Thompson.

“Some students didn’t realize that they even had class officers, so that’s been an interesting conversation. I told them that these fun opportunities in the school don’t happen just to happen, they’re for a cause. Fundraisers like Penny Day help bring awareness to the fact that there is stuff going on behind the scenes, and hopefully it motivates them to participate in the fun,” she said.

Penny Day is highly enjoyable for a number of LHS students and teachers. 

“I like penny day personally because it’s high interest for the kids, it’s a fundraiser, they get very involved, and it’s kind of a relaxing day. It’s for a good cause,” said Galadyk. 

“There’s been good and bad years. This year’s been good. Although last year the fundraiser made the least amount of money, with about a thousand dollars, and the money earned in 2022 was the highest record year with $3,100. You never know what it’s going to be like, and I’m excited to see how it’ll go next year,” said Thompson. 

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