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Eden Central PTA Honored With National Award for Leadership and Excellence in Family Engagement

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Heidi May, Media Relations Manager

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Aug. 28, 2014) — National PTA® has recognized Eden Central PTA with the 2014 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Outstanding Family-School Partnership Award for its leadership and dedication to building strong family-school partnerships. Named after National PTA co-founder Phoebe Apperson Hearst, the award is the highest honor presented by the association to recognize local PTAs that have effectively implemented the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships and demonstrated outstanding success in engaging families. Eden Central PTA was selected to receive the award among PTAs from across the country.

“Research shows that when families and schools work together, student achievement increases, schools improve and communities grow stronger,” said Otha Thornton, president of National PTA. “Eden Central PTA has put strong practices into place that involve families in the life of the school, and its efforts are making a substantial, positive impact on student success and school improvement. We are pleased to recognize the hard work and achievements of Eden Central PTA with the 2014 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Outstanding Family-School Partnership Award.”

Eden Central PTA dedicated its efforts during the 2013-2014 school year to helping families understand the changes occurring in their school as a result of the implementation of the Common Core State Standards. Eden Central PTA collaborated with the school's principal and the district's curriculum coordinator. Among this team's efforts, they hosted a Common Core Parent Information Night to provide parents an overview of the standards, explain the advantages of the standards, and empower them with strategies to support their children at home. The association also hosted three “Parent Academies,” which were informal meetings to answer questions. Additionally, the district's curriculum coordinator offered six “Curriculum Coffee Breaks” for teachers to provide them an opportunity to come together to problem solve and celebrate success. In the spring, the PTA hosted “Experience a Common Core Instruction Night,” which was a workshop for parents to experience first-hand the instructional shifts under the Common Core.

Eden Central PTA also is committed to engaging families in advocating for their children and school. The association organized two letter-writing campaigns during the 2013-2014 school year, encouraging families and community members to write to their local and state policymakers to stop budget cuts to education.

“We are using the power of family-school partnerships and our collective voice to speak up for every child to ensure that students have access to learning opportunities that will support their success,” said Tiffany Kwas, immediate past-president of Eden Central PTA.

In addition to being recognized with the 2014 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Outstanding Family-School Partnership Award, Eden Central PTA also has been honored with the 2014-2016 National PTA School of Excellence designation for its achievements in family engagement. For more information about the National PTA School of Excellence program, 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 parent involvement 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.