As we turn the corner into September it finally feels a bit like Fall here.  Welcome back to school!  OK, some of you probably have kids that went back to school over a month ago.  That is INSANE.  August is no time to be in school.  It’s a time for beating the heat, spending less time learning and more time binging Netflix, eating popsicles, riding the Slip N Slide.  OK pardon me as I get off my August Is No Time To Be In School soapbox…

All kidding aside, we are proud of our participation in General Mills’ Box Tops For Education program.  Back in 1996, General Mills developed Box Tops as a way to support education and benefit America’s schools.  Fast forward to today, where collecting Box Tops from various General Mills products is an easy way to raise funds for your local school.  Over 70,000 schools participate, and the Box Tops program has raised a whopping $840,000,000 for American schools.  We have produced some Box Tops content in years past, but this year our involvement went to another level.  We sent out our talented local crews to tell the stories of 35 of schools across the country, from Seattle to Miami, Baytown, TX to Terre Haute, IN.  What we found was powerful on multiple fronts.  It was inspiring to see that our country is filled with passionate educators and eager learners, who are being treated to quality educational experiences.  And it’s awesome to see major corporations like General Mills and its retail partners getting behind such an impactful program to make sure schools can afford to fuel their students’ passions.

Here’s a recap of where we went, and the happy students we celebrated.

It all started in California in 1996.

General Mills wanted to create a program to help support education and benefit America’s schools – and so, Box Tops for Education™ was born. As part of the initial test program, Box Tops were only available on select Big G cereals, such as Cheerios™, Total™ and Lucky Charms™.

The program was such a huge success that it soon launched on other General Mills products and expanded across the nation. By 1998, more than 30,000 schools were clipping Box Tops and earning cash to buy the things they needed: books, computers, playground equipment and more.

Over the next four years, the Box Tops for Education™ program doubled to include brands such as Pillsbury™, Old El Paso™ and Green Giant™. By 2004, over 82,000 schools across the nation participated in Box Tops, earning more than $100 million.

In 2006, for the first time, non-food brands began to participate; now families could clip Box Tops from Ziploc®, Hefty®, Kleenex® and Scott® products, too. As the program expanded, school earnings increased. By 2010, schools across the nation had earned over $320 million.

Today, America’s schools have earned over $800 million, and you can find Box Tops on hundreds of products throughout the grocery store and online.