PTAs and Schools Honored for Innovation and Excellence in Family Engagement

ALEXANDRIA, Va., (Aug. 16, 2018)—National PTA is pleased to recognize three PTAs and schools with its 2018 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Awards—the highest honor presented by the association to celebrate family engagement.

Maple West Elementary PTA in Williamsville, N.Y. has been honored with the Phoebe Apperson Hearst Outstanding Family-School Partnership Award and a prize package including a $2,000 grant for their school. Laurens Middle School PTA in Laurens, S.C. and Boggess Elementary PTA in Murphy, Texas have been honored with the Phoebe Apperson Hearst Awards of Merit.

“Our Phoebe Apperson Hearst Awards—named after National PTA co-founder Phoebe Apperson Hearst—honor PTAs and schools that have demonstrated outstanding achievement in engaging families in student success and school improvements,” said Jim Accomando, president of National PTA. “We are thrilled to recognize the hard work and accomplishments of Maple West Elementary PTA, Laurens Middle School PTA and Boggess Elementary PTA with our 2018 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Awards.”

National PTA is pleased to also honor 278 PTAs and schools as 2018-2020 Schools of Excellence for their accomplishments in building strong, effective family-school partnerships that enrich the educational experience and overall well-being for all students.

The School of Excellence program helps PTAs and school leaders partner to identify and implement an action plan for school improvement based on PTA’s National Standards for Family-School Partnerships. The schools that achieve their goals by the end of the school year are honored as National PTA Schools of Excellence, a distinction that spans two years.

“When families are engaged and collaborate with schools, students do better in school and the schools improve,” said Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “The efforts of these PTAs and schools are making a positive impact on family engagement, student success and school improvement, and we are pleased to designate them as 2018-2020 Schools of Excellence.”

Enrollment is now open for the School of Excellence program and consideration of the 2019-2021 School of Excellence designation. The deadline to enroll is Oct. 1. For more information about the program and to enroll, visit

About National PTA

National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of family engagement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health and welfare of children and youth. For more information, visit

Media Contact

Heidi May Wilson, National PTA, (703) 518-1242


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TIME IS RUNNING OUT for Grant Applications due Aug 26th

Local units have an opportunity to apply for 3 grants and state/council/region/district can also apply for a grant.  Grants are due by August 26 – less than 2 weeks away.  Please encourage your local units to take advantage of this opportunity!!!

If a PTA has previously won one of the Science Festival or Math grants, they cannot apply for that same grant again.  They can apply for the GOYA grant.

Here are some ideas/pointers as you support local units and encourage them to apply –


The initial questions in each application are to identify the person submitting the application, the school and the PTA.

Then there are 3-4 questions specific to each grant. Please see the questions for each grant below.

It would be best to craft the answers in a Word or Pages document prior to filling out the online application.  This would help the local unit leaders craft and edit the message as they work to succinctly describe their plan and stay within the word limit requirements.

GOYA-Move Healthy Lifestyle Grant: 15- $1000 grants

Elementary or Middle School PTA

How would you make sure that a broad & diverse group of families attend your “Get Off Your Apps” Physical Activity Event? (250 words or less)

At the “Get Off Your Apps” Physical Activity Event, how would you make sure families and students engage in the activities together? (250 words or less)

How would the “Get Off Your Apps” Physical Activity Event promote & support ongoing physical activity in your school community? (250 words or less)

STEM + Families Science Festival Grant: 30- $1000 grants plus $250 in science materials.

(Activities are geared towards elementary age students, but a high school can apply to host an event in partnership with a local elementary or middle school.)

Briefly describe your school community and why a STEM + Families Science Festival would be valuable to your community. (100 words or less)

At your STEM + Families Science Festival, how would your PTA make sure all families feel welcomed and engaged? (250 words or less)

How will your PTA use the STEM + Families Science Festival to advance STEM learning at your school? (250 words or less)

Share one idea that will make your Science Festival unique (100 words or less).

STEM + Families Math Night Grant: 35-$1000 grants- Elementary school PTAs

Briefly describe why the STEM + Families Math Night would be valuable to the broad and diverse groups of families and students you serve. (100 words or less)

At the STEM + Families Math Night, how would your PTA make sure all families feel welcomed and engaged? (250 words or less)

How will your PTA use the STEM + Families Math Night to promote ongoing STEM learning at your school? (250 words or less)

National PTA website has resources and ideas on the website.  Encourage local units to check it out.

In other news – don’t forget to encourage local units to apply for the School of Excellence – enrollment ends Oct 1 and Reflections – enrollment ends Nov 1.

If  you have any questions, please let me know.

Mary Jo Neil | National Service Representative

C 301.919.8839 |

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