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Booster Club 101. An Introduction to Booster Clubs and Parent Groups. Purpose.

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booster club 101

Booster Club 101

An Introduction to Booster Clubs and Parent Groups

  • In the Humble ISD School District (HISD), we encourage the participation and involvement of parents in the education of their children. One way parents can be involved is through participation in voluntary parent organizations such as Booster Clubs and PTOs and PTAs.
  • Booster Clubs should be organized to help promote, support, and improve the extra curricular activities of the schools in Humble ISD.
Booster Clubs and Parent Groups represent the school they support. Therefore, it is necessary for them to follow the guidelines set forth by the District. This is done to protect our parents, patrons, and most importantly, our students.

“Although Texas ranks as the number-one state for having its school districts misrepresented in fundraising schemes, neither size nor climate zone determines which districts are most apt to become targets. It's all about the money.”(, 8/2006)

what to expect before forming
What to Expect Before Forming

The following are some questions to consider when deciding whether or not to form a Booster Club:

  • Why do I want a Booster Club?
  • What can a Booster Club accomplish that cannot be achieved through the use of a Student Activity Fund?
  • Do I have time to commit to a Booster Club?
  • Are there enough parents with time to commit to a Booster Club?
  • Am I willing to perform the necessary research, training, and paperwork to be in compliance with all District, UIL, state, and federal regulations?
  • Have I read or will I read the Booster Club handbook to discover my responsibilities once a Booster Club is formed?
  • Have I spoken with other similar Booster Clubs to determine what benefits/problems they have experienced?
  • Have I spoken with the Sponsor to obtain support for the formation of a Booster Club?
  • Have I obtained permission from the campus principal?
you do not have to form a booster
You Do Not Have to Form a Booster
  • You do not have to form a booster. Parents may still support a student group as parents through fund-raisers and other activities that are controlled through the Student Activity Fund set up with the District. All money would be considered the student group’s money and would benefit only those students.
authoritative guidelines
Authoritative Guidelines
  • Booster Clubs are governed by various entities. The School District has Board Policies and guidelines that must be followed by Booster Clubs (GE Local), as well as guidelines that the School Principal or Administrator (if the Booster Club is not located at a school) may implement. Also, the Booster Clubs must follow the guidelines of the University Interscholastic League (UIL), the State of Texas, and the Federal Government, through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Some state regulations relate to state sales tax while other regulations involve becoming incorporated or involve the holding of a raffle.
  • The UIL Booster Club Guidelines do not necessarily include all rules that may apply to your organization. For specific questions, you should contact the UIL directly.
authoritative guidelines1
Authoritative Guidelines

The required federal regulatory information discussed does not include all laws or rules that may apply to your particular situation. This information is provided by the District’s Internal Audit Department; however, Internal Audit is not an authority on specific accounting situations or tax-related issues concerning individual Booster Clubs. Therefore, Booster Clubs should obtain competent independent counsel, such as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or an attorney, to address accounting and tax matters related to their specific circumstances. The cost of these services would be the Booster Club’s responsibility. In addition, the IRS and the Texas State Comptroller’s Office may be contacted for questions related to your organization’s specific situation.

authoritative guidelines2
Authoritative Guidelines

Booster Club officers are solely responsible for ensuring that their Booster Club is in compliance with all federal regulations. The most important regulation is the duty to comply, and the duty to report. Therefore, the District is not responsible for a Booster Club not being in good standing with all federal agencies. However, the District has provided the following information that includes steps Booster Clubs should take to comply with federal tax regulations.

basic requirements to formation
Basic Requirements to Formation
  • Must obtain written approval from the School Principal.
  • Must be formed as a non profit charity with the purpose as defined in the Internal Revenue Code section 501C3. This is the only way to be recognized as an exempt charity.
  • Get your sales and use tax permit.
  • Obtain a post office box/permanent mailing address.
  • Must have proof of liability insurance in place.
  • Must become incorporated as a non profit.
  • Begin submitting timely audited financials yearly. (by September 1st)
irs and state processes
IRS and State Processes
  • Obtain an EIN: Complete form SS-4 or complete form SS-4 online. (no fee)
  • With an EIN and bylaws, you may open a bank account.
  • Obtain a State Sales and Use Tax Permit. Form AP-201. (no fee)
  • Contact the Secretary of State in order to become incorporated. This step is strongly recommended. Complete form 202. ($25 fee)
  • If you desire, complete Form 1023 in order to be recognized as an exempt organization. ( Also complete the user fee, Form 8718. ($750) Or you may join the Group Booster Exemption. Contact (no fee)
  • Contact the State Comptrollers Office Exempt Organizations Department in order to be recognized as exempt with the State. (no fee)
irs and state process
IRS and State Process
  • Once you are properly set up, you must maintain good standing with the State of Texas and the Federal Government. You must file your Sales and Use Tax reports as well as your IRS Form 990’s.
  • You must also have a yearly audit. The audited financials must be turned in to the Internal Audit Department by September 1st of each year.
  • You may also want to refer to the Booster Club Checklist. This reference document should be completed and turned in to the Internal Audit Department annually by September 1st.

liability insurance
Liability Insurance
  • All Boosters are required to have Liability Insurance. The minimum lines of coverage are $2 million in aggregate, $1 million per occurrence. There are several vendors who provide this type of coverage.
  • All Boosters must supply evidence of Liability Insurance.
  • If you would like to join the group liability policy for Boosters managed by the District, please contact
Boosters should send up-to-date contact (e-mail) information for officers to the Internal Audit Department.

  • This allows the District to communicate with you, and keep you current through the Booster Club Bulletins that are sent electronically. See the Booster Club/Parent Organization page at|&NodeID=190

June 16, 2006
  • More Booster Club Trouble - This Time at El Toro

El Toro boosters might be missing $250,000Saddleback Valley Unified has hired a fraud examiner to determine how much money is unaccounted for.MISSION VIEJO The Saddleback Valley Unified School District has hired a fraud examiner to determine whether as much as $250,000 is missing from an athletic boosters fund at El Toro High School and may file a report with the Sheriff’s Department soon, district officials say. According to parents who have met with school officials, the money is missing from the account, the sole funding for 23 El Toro High boosters organizations.

April 3, 2008

Former high school booster club treasurer arrested

By Joann Groff

The man who served as Thousand Oaks High School Football Booster Club treasurer for more than two and a half years has been arrested for allegedly embezzling the money he volunteered to help keep an eye on. Michael McCarley, 59, turned himself in at the East Valley Sheriff's Station on March 12. Shortly thereafter he was arrested on suspicion of grand theft, having allegedly taken more than $30,000 from the club, according to Sgt. Mark Gillette. McCarley is free on $10,000 bail.

"There was some concern among booster members who believed that there were some problems with financial records and maybe even money missing," Baarstad said. "We got all their records so we could do an audit. There was enough initial information that it was pretty clear right away that something was up."

April 1, 2010

Former Booster Club Treasurer in California Charge in Alleges $175K Embezzlement Case

Herman Wong, 62, of Venice, California, was arrested and charged with one count of grand theft by embezzlement recently with misappropriating as much as $175,000 from the Venice High School Booster Club where he had served as volunteer treasurer for the past 6 years. Wong was reportedly the only bookkeeper for the organization. Details on the case have not fully been released.

Detectives were notified that up to $175,000 was showing missing from the booster club account and after reviewing the financial records they determined that Wong, the volunteer treasurer of the club, had allegedly embezzled funds for personal use, Serna said. Wong, who served as treasurer from 2003 to 2009, had allegedly restored about $57,000 to the account prior to his arrest, she said.

Wong was the group’s sole treasurer for six years and the booster club was initially unaware that any funds were missing from its account during that time, Serna said.

The detective said she found the case particularly unsettling during a time when schools are already facing significant cuts as a result of the state budget crisis. The booster club collects money from fundraisers and other donations for various extracurricular activities and the loss of those funds could “affect the morale” of students who are passionate about those programs, Serna said.

Wallace said Wong did not hold a position at the high school but he became involved with the booster club after his children attended the school.

Serna said this case could serve as a lesson to booster groups to ensure that they are auditing their funds properly and have at least two signers on checks.

July 24, 2007

As dramatic as high school sports can be, sometimes the more intense battles involve the student athletes' impassioned parents.

Such a dispute is revolving around the Bellaire High School baseball program, one of the most successful in the Houston Independent School District.

One father is accusing veteran coach Rocky Manuel of pressuring parents to donate money, while another is criticizing HISD's limited oversight of booster clubs -- which raise hundreds of thousands of dollars a year for high school athletics in the district.

The coach says he has done nothing wrong. The head of one team booster club says the criticism is unjustified.

HISD is asking Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott for an opinion on whether the district is responsible for maintaining booster clubs' financial records. The opinion, expected this week, could affect the relationship between school systems and booster clubs across Texas.

reference list
Reference List
  • Internal Revenue Service-Non Profit Section


  • Texas State Comptrollers Office-Exempt Organizations 1-800-252-5555
  • University Interscholastic League 512-471-5883
  • Texas Secretary of State 1-512-463-5555
  • Humble ISD-Parent/Exempt Organizations


  • Texas Attorney General

Houston Office- 713-223-5886

there is help
There is Help….
  • Remember the Internal Audit Department holds two Booster Club Outreach sessions for Parents who are involved with Boosters.
  • Use the resources on the Booster Club Webpage.
  • IA will also help you prepare a tax policy statement.
  • There is a monthly newsletter.
  • Assistance is provided on Tuesday’s, Wednesday’s and Thursday’s in between the hours of 9 and 3p.m.
  • Never be afraid to ask questions.
  • You may be contacted for routine account maintenance.
  • There is a Booster Club Manual online at: