School of Excellence

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National PTA School of Excellence

National PTA School of Excellence recognition program opens the lines of communication and critical thinking within school communities to make data-driven decisions that yield positive, long-term results.

Enrollment is Now Open!

The enrollment period for the 2021-2022 National PTA School of Excellence program will be open until October 15, 2021 (deadline extended from Oct. 1).

Once enrolled, local PTAs will gain access to tools to run their School of Excellence program. Local PTAs are encouraged to enroll early to start building their Excellence Teams and to familiarize themselves with the steps in the program process.

Review this SAMPLE Enrollment Form to see what information you will be required to provide, including PTA and school information. We encourage local leaders to include contacts for up to two additional local leaders to receive program communications throughout the program.

Enroll Now

What Does it Take to Become a National PTA School of Excellence?

National PTA School of Excellence is a recognition program that supports and celebrates partnerships between local PTAs and schools to enrich the educational experience and overall well-being for all students. By enrolling in this program, your PTA and school administrators are making a year-long commitment in identifying and implementing an action plan for school improvement based on PTA's National Standards for Family-School Partnerships and Transformative Family Engagement.

Those that exhibit improvement are honored as National PTA Schools of Excellence, a distinction that spans two years. Honorees receive celebration tools and automatic consideration for the top honors, the  Phoebe Apperson Hearst Award and a $2,000 grant for their school. PTAs are encouraged to renew their designation each year, or every other year, to continue to build on their momentum.

Your School of Excellence designation will help attract new, action-oriented PTA members who want to focus on the issues that affect our children the most. And being a National PTA School of Excellence will open the door to other honors and opportunities for your school.

Find answers to frequently asked questions here (en español).

Steps to Becoming a National PTA School of Excellence

Steps to Becoming a School of Excellence 

Step 1: Enroll and Gain Support (June 1 Oct. 15 - deadline extended from Oct. 1)

Step 2: Deploy Baseline Survey (Sep. –Nov.)

Step 3: Set a Shared Objective (Sep. –Nov.)

Step 4: Complete Initial Application (Submit by Nov. 1)

Step 5: Follow Roadmap to Excellence (Throughout School Year)

Step 6: Deploy Final Survey (March –June)

Step 7: Complete Final Application (Submit by June 1)

Step 8: Celebrate Your Excellence (Aug.)

**Learn more about the steps here (en español)**


What Schools Say about the Program

The School of Excellence Program is a powerful tool that can benefit everyone. It brings to light ways that the school/PTA can improve, but it also celebrates successes. It can be a visual reminder of everything we have accomplished together as a school and PTA.
– Lee Heinerikson, Thomas B. Chinn Elementary Principal, Missouri
This program has opened up important dialogues that will positively impact our school community. In some areas it has validated our work. In some areas, it has brought things to our attention that we hadn't considered.
– Christopher Moretti, Hawley Elementary School Principal, Connecticut
The award provides an example of how the PTA, community and school have a bond and interest in ensuring that our students succeed. It's an opportunity to celebrate our accomplishments while setting goals towards future challenges.
– Dr. Gregory Matlosz, Upper Greenwood Lake Elementary School Principal, New Jersey


The 2020-2022 National PTA Schools of Excellence are designated in recognition of their commitment to building an inclusive and welcoming school-community where all families contribute to enriching the educational experience and overall well-being for all students.

Also, please join us in congratulating the top three Schools of Excellence and recipients of the 2021 Phoebe Apperson Hearst Award Recipients: 

  • Helen Keller Jr. High School PTA (Illinois) – Phoebe Apperson Hearst Outstanding Family-School Partnership Award
  • Miami Beach Senior High PTSA (Florida) – Phoebe Apperson Hearst Family-School Partnership Award of Merit
  • Hembree Springs Elementary School PTA (Georgia) – Phoebe Apperson Hearst Family-School Partnership Award of Merit

You can view past Schools of Excellence from 2014-20162015-20172016-20182017-20192018-2020 and 2019-2021. Review these data reports to learn more about past designees:

Join us in celebrating these Schools of Excellence on social media with #HowWePTA and #PTAExcellence, and tag @NationalPTA.

School of Excellence in Media 

Shareable Promotions

Use these promotion materials to share your participation in the program and gain support in your community. Share back with us by using #PTAExcellence and #HowWePTA!

School of Excellence in the News

Check out some of the news coverage part and current School of Excellence designees receive!

School of Excellence Highlights

The School of Excellence experience is different for every PTA. Check out some of the experiences designees and participants have had in their journeys to Excellence!