Vallejo student upset after school district confiscates fundraising money

VALLEJO, Calif. (KGO) -- Most parents know the importance of fundraising for their kids. One Vallejo student got in trouble trying to raise money for an upcoming class trip. What happened next has the school district apologizing.

Who knew selling cookies was not allowed at some schools? The district told ABC7 News that the matter is now under investigation.

"I didn't know that I was doing anything wrong," said student Hannah Young.

She admits her feelings were hurt by a staff member at Jesse Bethel High School in Vallejo.

It all started several weeks ago when juniors and seniors of the school's law academy were offered a possible trip to the nation's capital.

"They told us that the trip was $1,800 per student," said Young. "And they said if each student could raise at least $1,600, they can pay the rest of it."

The 16-year-old set up a GoFundMe page and did what she could to raise the money including selling baked goods at school. On Wednesday she brought cookies. That's when she was sent to student services, where she claims a staff member reprimanded her.

"She took my bag and she opened it, and she took the money out and she told me, 'Do you see this money? This is not allowed,' and she opened my bag and threw my cookies in the trash," Young said. "The rest of the cookies that I had."

The school referred Hannah and her mother to the school handbook, a 45 page document we found online. There's a paragraph that says, "Students involved in unauthorized sales for personal profit will have their money and sale item confiscated."

"They chose to bring my daughter in, not let her explain, not ask her questions, trash her property, her cookies, her hard work, and take her money," said Young's mother Michelle.

Both the school and the district refused to go on camera. But in a phone conversation, the assistant superintendent said the principal has apologized and will return Hannah's money.

"I've never been out of state, so yeah I pretty much just wanted an apology," Hannah said as she started to cry, "Sorry, just hurt my feelings."

She only hopes that the incident won't hurt her chances of going to Washington.
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