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NAPLES, Italy — As students head back to school in the next few weeks, members of local communities are putting the word out about Boxtops for Education. The program earns money for schools (grades kindergarten through eighth) with coupons printed on packages of common household and food items.

Clip enough of those coupons and schools can earn up to $20,000 a year for programs that might not otherwise receive funding. Boxtops for Education also includes two other programs — Marketplace and Boxtops Book Club — that can earn schools an additional $20,000 each, for a total of $60,000 awarded per school year.

"We’re setting up a display in the commissary this Saturday from 11 to 3 to explain how the program earns money for our school," said Darlene Harris, the program coordinator for Naples Elementary school in Italy.

"Last year, we used the money to help fund programs like Math Night Out, our science exposition, and field day events," Harris said.

Coupons are worth 10 cents apiece, but some products have two or three coupons on each package. Program coordinators collect the coupons throughout the year and mail them in for reimbursement twice a year. Expired cannot be submitted.

Boxtops for Education was started in 1996 by General Mills and at the time only included their products. It has since expanded to include other manufacturers and hundreds of commonly used products. The program has earned more than $200 million for schools since it started, according to its Web site.

For more information, go to www.boxtops4education.com.


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