Macy’s school campaign raises eyebrows as well as funds

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A fundraising message in the checkout line raised questions for some shoppers.

Macy’s was seeking charitable donations to an organization called “Memphis Public Schools."

Some shoppers were worried this could be a scam since “Memphis Public Schools” doesn’t exist. However, we’ve since learned it’s part of a larger campaign with a small error in the wording.

Macy’s says this is their second “Make Good Cents” campaign, which allows you to donate change up to 99 cents to charity.

The first campaign they did was Bag Hunger in March.

This summer’s campaign is going to educational initiatives through DonorsChoose.org.

Although it says Memphis Public Schools, the money is benefiting the Shelby County School District at the Macy's in Oak Court Mall and Wolfchase, and Collierville Public Schools at Macy’s Carriage Crossing.

Macy’s representatives say the note was generic on the key pads and they have since been corrected to list the specific district names to avoid further confusion.

The promotion started on July 10 and will end on July 31.

About three-fourths of the projects funded are from schools where half or more students are from low-income households.

“Every year, our children start school without school supplies, so our teachers have to step in and provide some of those school supplies for our children, so basically we encourage people to definitely think about us when they’re looking at making donations because it truly makes a big impact in the lives of our children," said Kristin Tallent, Shelby County Schools spokeswoman.

Of course, it is optional for shoppers to round up to the next dollar or not when they’re checking out.

The school district says they’d also love for people to volunteer if they’d rather not donate money.