Chepstow School PTA has been selected as the Wales regional winner in the Community Links category of the PTA-UK Gold Star Awards 2014, and will now proceed to the UK finals.
This award, sponsored by Liberty Mutual Insurance Ltd, recognises and rewards PTAs that have undertaken a project or activity that specifically engages the school with the local community.
The annual Gold Star Awards reward PTA successes and celebrates the great things PTAs do to support and transform schools. Interest in the awards has grown year on year since they were first launched in 2005.
It is easy to see why the judges liked this application. Chepstow School PTA faced the same problem as many secondary schools when it came to recruiting new volunteers – there weren’t enough! With many PTA committee members due to step down in 2014 they knew they had reached crisis point so this ingenious PTA agreed that in order to save Chepstow PTA it needed to forge much stronger links with local schools. On 23 October 2012, the PTA invited members from the PTAs of five local feeder schools to join them, and Chepstow Schools Together (CST) was formed. The objective of the group was to discuss issues of mutual benefit, explore ways to support each PTA’s fundraising effort, but more importantly, to find ways to raise their profiles, both collectively and individually, within the community at large. Since that first meeting, CST have met regularly and organised a number of social, fundraising and community events. Best practice is shared at every opportunity, with PTA volunteers learning from each other and sharing valuable ideas and tangible resources. The group has now extended its remit and has hosted a number of community workshops – one for PTA-UK, and a paediatric first-aid talk. Plans are underway for a joint fundraiser with the proceeds going towards something that will benefit all the schools. Chepstow Schools Together is now an integral part of community life and a legacy for future generations.
“The Gold Star Awards recognise and reward the everyday achievements of PTAs throughout the region.” said Jane Galbraith, PTA-UK Adviser. “The standard of entries was very high this year and PTA-UK commends all the applications received. To make it through to the national finals as one of five regional winners in the Community Links category is an amazing feat and we wish Chepstow School the very best of luck as they now go through to the final judging stage.”
Chepstow School will receive £500 for their PTA and will attend a special Awards Ceremony in central London on 11 June 2014 where the overall winner in the PTA Community Links category will be announced. If successful, Chepstow School will receive a cheque for £1,000. Jonny Mitchell of Educating Yorkshire fame and TV presenters Carrie and David Grant will hand over the accolades.
Well done to our amazing team, and good luck!