Turning cheesecakes into nacho cheese

School fundraisers teach salesmanship and snack habits

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Planet Money reporter Sarah Gonzalez’ recent report on school fundraisers wasn’t framed as a food story. Her investigation was focused on the economics of education, and endeavored to answer the question of why nonstop fundraising persists even though public school spending-per-student is at a 20-year high nationwide.

Specifically, she wanted to find out why $14,347 doesn’t necessarily cover the cost of nacho cheese, and why kids are selling peanut brittle to make up for the shortfall—which made me think she’d left plenty of food material on the cutting room floor.

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