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Parents’ Association Helps Enhance Student Experience

Every year at St. Michael’s College School (SMCS), the Parents’ Association (PA) outreaches to the school community of teachers and students to discover unique and tangible ways they can support the student and family experience.

“Our annual outreach is a structured budgetary process whereby requests are made by the teacher or the club/team coordinator,” says Nancy Nash, President of the PA. “The goal is clear; we find ways to best support school initiatives to ultimately enhance the school experience.”

SMCSPA | Parents attending curriculum night

The PA’s call for funding requests aligns seamlessly with its mission to engage and strengthen the SMCS community for the benefit of all students and ultimately support SMCS in delivering excellence in Catholic education.

Funding requests are reviewed by the PA budget chair, treasurer, president, and the school principal. Once funding decisions have been made, the moderators are notified.

“We try to balance the budget between arts, clubs, and sports teams each year so that we can support as many boys as possible,” says Nash. “Some years may be a little heavy in one area, so we make sure we compensate for that the next year.”

SMCSPA President Nancy Nash

In addition to finding special ways to help support current programming and initiatives, the PA also creates opportunities for any teacher or student to bring a new idea to the table provided there is enough student interest.

“For several years, we have gone the route of outreaching to staff and students who are in a perfect position to understand where help is most needed,” adds Nash. “If we can help in any small way to augment an already wonderful educational experience, we are happy to do so.”

The diversity of support speaks volumes with almost every club or team having benefitted from PA support. The PA also supports community-building activities and events. Some highlights of their impact include:

  • Purchasing Bibles for Grade 9 students each year along with Host and Communion bowls
  • Snacks and hot chocolate at exam time
  • Supporting the creation of a Grade 12 lounge
  • Basketball shooting net, explosive training kits and balls for rugby, baseball team uniforms
  • Stereo equipment for the music department
  • Digital hotplate for chemistry department
  • Supporting school theatre productions
  • Digital cameras for the media arts department
  • Funded a student leadership retreat
  • Sponsoring the Grade 12- Mother and Son Mass & Brunch
SMCSPA | The Mother & Son Mass and Brunch

Historically, the money raised to support the requests comes from various PA-supported fundraising efforts as well as an annual student incidental fees contribution of $50/student totalling approximately $45,000 in fixed expenses (re-occurring items) and approximately $70,000 in variable expenses.

Augmenting the student experience through unique financial support is but one way the PA supports the student experience. Their activities extend to volunteering, community building, parent communication and support, and friend-raising events.

“Participating in the PA is such a rewarding way to make a meaningful contribution to the school and our sons’ experience,” adds Nash. “I would encourage anyone who is interested to come out to a meeting and be part of our wonderful parent community.”

SMCSPA | Parents attending curriculum night

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