The DVIS PTFA exists to enrich the lives of our children in their early education, by supporting a sense of community and raising funds to develop the life and work of the school.
Last year our school community of 270+ families, plus staff, governors, alumni and friends, raised more than ￡20,000 for the PTFA fund. This year, we are on track for ￡25,000.
All but a small reserve of these funds is poured straight into resources and activities that immensely enrich our school and community. For a snapshot of what’s on right now, visit our website.
We (and you) should be proud of what we’ve raised. But we should be even more proud of how we raised it: We prioritize activities and events that bring us all together and we make them as inclusive as we possibly can, in the hope that this will create a truly strong and mutually supportive school community.
All our events and projects are 100% volunteer powered (even the school staff who support us often do so generously on their own time.) Sometimes a question comes up: “Why don’t we just ask people to donate cash?”. We could indeed crowdfund, and sometimes (especially for major capital investments) we will. But if we only did this we would miss out on so much:
- The huge enjoyment of sell-out events like the Christmas and Summer Fairs, the Family Disco and Easter egg Hunt, the Parents’ Party and Quiz Night
- All the skills, ideas, talents and energy in our community that go far beyond money
- The chance for our kids to see their beloved parents and carers become role models for the values and “soft” skills—like creativity, resilience and team-work—that we’re trying to instill in them.
If you’re already involved, thank you. If you’re new to the school or to the PTFA, welcome! Read our FAQ below for more on how it all works, and be sure to join our email list: Click Here. so you don’t miss out on tickets, reminders etc. (The school cannot share data with us owing to GDPR regulations).
If you’re a governor, parent, carer or team-member at DVIS, you’re already a member of the PTFA. You’re warmly welcome at all our meetings and events—there are many bite-sized ways to contribute your energy and skills, no matter how much time you have to give!
Everything we do is entirely volunteer based, supported by a core committee and a handful of class reps for each class. We’re grateful for the involvement of many local businesses who offer us sponsorship and discounts year after year. As we’re a registered charity, our committee members also act as Trustees.
We hold an annual AGM each autumn, where we review finances, vote on roles and funding commitments, and shape a calendar for the year ahead based on the levels of enthusiasm and volunteering :)
For the rest of the year, we meet informally once or twice a term in one of our local pubs, to help keep our activities on track. New faces, voices and ideas are welcome all year round.
Items on the school’s wish list vary from year to year, but over the past several years we’ve contributed:
- Coaches for school field trips
- Bug club and Mathletics literacy/numeracy learning subscriptions for kids
- New enrichment and reading books
- Free flow resources in all years
- Sports ground for weekly PE lessons
- Visiting Christmas Pantomime & gift from Santa
- Live musician accompaniment for nativity and year 2 performances
- Plants, garden supplies and pollution-mitigation efforts
- Sensory/Quiet room resources
- Resilience workshops for kids, teachers and parents
- Outdoor play resources like reading houses, wooden boats, mud kitchens, benches and (new for Summer 2019) outdoor handwashing station.
- Enrichment activities that build links across the diocese & Southwark
- Teacher development and team-building activities
2017-18 year efforts funded the total replacement of the reception playground surface and renewal of many of the resources there over the summer break, to the tune of 13k. This is a perfect example of the pay-it-forward nature of our PTFA: As well as resources that benefit our own kids immediately, we invest in future generations of DVIS families, just as earlier families invested for us.
As Head, Helen aggregates suggestions and requests from across the school staff, and prioritizes them in an A, B, and C-list that is shared in our September AGM. All attendees at the AGM vote on the prioritization and commitment of “A-list” funds, which we then set about fundraising for. Further votes are held and funds released through the year as we see how we’re doing against targets.
Funds from previous years are rolled over, enabling us to start writing checks right away in September, if needed. We try to hold 5k in reserve at all times, for emergency requests and to buffer future years’ committees. Our accounts are independently reviewed and submitted to the Charity Commission annually.
- By going to our events web site: http://dvis-ptfa.org.uk and registering! There you can buy tickets or products, and/or sign up for a short volunteer shift at events you’re already going to
- By sharing any skills, contacts, or expertise you may have—whether it’s designing a poster, sourcing products for sale, drumming up raffle prizes, getting matched funding from your employer…
- By shopping at major online retailers through easyfundraising via our unique benefit link: https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/invite/CZW9JN/VCQJCF/
- By signing up for the PTFA mailing list: http://signup.dvis-ptfa.org.uk and heeding the call for donations of cakes, uniform, prizes, “jingle jars”, and so on
- Check out the ‘crowdfunding’ page on our website to learn about current fundraisers and how you can donate.
- By making your voice and ideas heard at our next meeting. All are welcome, check on http://dvis-ptfa.org.uk for details of the next one.