Welcome to a new school year.
Many JMC families will be familiar with what PFA does, however, to update the newer families I have
written this article to get you up to speed.
The Parents and Friends Association is an opportunity for interested parents to involve themselves in school projects, meet with other parents, discuss school issues, contribute to policy making and to act as a forum for the exchange of ideas about the school.
The PFA meets every month. At the meeting, Neil Garry (Principal), a Teacher Rep and a Board member give the committee reports on what is happening around the school.
Three times a year we also have a funding round to distribute funds to support school activities.
The fete, held in the fourth term is the only Parents and Friends Association fundraiser. Last year’s fete raised $75,000. There is also a voluntary fee charged to parents’ accounts every term which is used to supplement the Association’s funds.
While the Association has governing rules; the guidelines for the distribution of the funds are more flexible so we can support the school as the need arises. The guidelines are continuously being refined to ensure we maximise the benefit to the school and pupils.
The current guidelines are as follows:
We contribute to one major school project per year which the school and committee decide on before the yearly Fete. In recent years, these have been outdoor education, sports ground lighting, chapel AV equipment and carpet flooring tiles for the gym.
We have 3 grant funding rounds per year, these distribute approximately $12,000 each time. Teachers, school departments, sports and cultural groups and individual pupils can apply for funding via contacting the PFA Teacher Rep (Rachael Gardiner) for a funding schedule and application form.
Teachers and School departments
Some of the successful 2017 fund applications were for compasses and portable BBQ (Outdoor education), costumes (Drama), Satellite phone (General), robot kits (Digitech and S.E.E.K.), music equipment (Music) and funding assistance for Year 10 Arts week. The amounts funded varied widely from a few dollars to several thousand.
Sports and Cultural groups
Successful 2017 fund applications have been for accommodation, travel expenses, tournament fees, chess sets, pipe band equipment, uniforms and venue hire.Our ‘rule of thumb’ is a sport code/ team can apply for one $500 grant per year.We don’t contribute to activities that can be funded by the Sports Council or the sport codes own fundraising efforts.
Successful 2017 fund applications have been for travel, accommodation, and entry fees. Our current ‘rule of thumb’ is individuals can apply for a $250 grant when they are representing the College at an event. We don’t contribute to individual students where other College students will be participating in the same activity unless it is a group application.
When reviewing the grant applications, the committee focuses on the objectives of the PFA rules:
- does it maximise the beneficiary group of students?
- does it facilitate improved educational outcomes for pupils?
- does it encourage students to participate in sport/recreation?
- does it encourage students to participate in arts and cultural experiences?
- does it enhance the environment of the College?
- what other fundraising efforts have been made by the applicant?
The guidelines are continuous.
The AGM for the Parents and Friends Association is being held on Monday 12th March at7pm upstairs in the Edgar Learning Centre. All parents and guardians of current students are welcome to come along to see what we do and join the PFA committee if they wish.
I have been involved with many committees over the years and I must say this is the easiest by far. As a member, you get a far greater understanding and input into your school community and the only real work is helping out with the Fete later in the year; which is great fun!
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me on
firstname.lastname@example.org or 021 068 6804
JMC Parents and Friends Association Chair