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JIS News

The National Parent Teachers’ Association of Jamaica (NPTAJ), will be undertaking a Best PTA Award Competition, in an effort to identify and salute those organisations that are doing well.
The competition was launched in October and PTAs will be judged on their performance over the 10-month period from November 1, 2008 to August 31, 2009.
President of the NPTAJ, Miranda Sutherland, told JIS News, that PTAs that are interested in participating should meet certain criteria. These are: having no less than 20 per cent parent attendance at PTA meetings and minimum attendance of 30 per cent of teaching staff; holding of at least three full PTA meetings with the entire population expected to come together; and the highest average attendance of fathers at the three meetings.
The PTA must undertake an activity to improve good behaviour in the school, for example, the establishment of a peer mediation group through Peace and Love in Schools (PALS); there should be no fighting or any other behaviour that brings the school into disrepute; all students’ reports must be collected within one month after announcement that they are ready; and submission of a written report by the PTA, no later than July 15, 2009, on its activities during the year.
Mrs. Sutherland informed further that the PTAs will be required to hold at least one parenting seminar during the competition period under the theme: ‘Supportive families and teachers working towards a harmonious and prosperous society’. In keeping with the theme, PTAs must hold one family activity during the school year and the community must ensure the security of the school. “This might seem very stringent but we are saying, take charge of your community and your school,” she stated.
The NPTAJ President further outlined that the principals of the competing schools must submit a report on the involvement of the PTAs in the schools’ activities no later than July 15, 2009.
“It’s not that the PTA is an independent body operating in isolation of the school so the principal ought to be attending PTA meetings and ought to know what is happening in the PTA body, and they are to submit their independent report on the PTA,” she stated.
The Best PTA Award is to be judged by a team of persons to be identified by the NPTA, and the award will be presented during Parent Month, in November 2009. The selection will be made from the top PTAs submitted from each region.
All participating PTAs must be registered members of the NPTAJ.