The Friends of Ark Blacklands
All parents, carers and staff at Ark Blacklands Primary Academy are automatically members of the Friends association, known as F.A.B. The F.A.B. Committee, which runs the charity and organises all fundraising events, is made up of members like yourself who have been elected to the committee at the Annual General Meeting (A.G.M.) Once elected, these members will serve for one year, until they either stand down or are re-elected at the next A.G.M.
We would love to have members representing all year groups across the academy, so please don't be shy about coming forward. We're a friendly group who need as much help as possible to come up with new ideas for fundraising as well as running and staffing our tried and tested events. It's a great way to make friends with other parents, get to know the school and staff better and feel you're doing something to enhance your kids' education along the way. Oh, and it's fun! What's not to love?!
We have a committee meeting roughly every two months with lots of extra email/text communications in the run-up to events. No previous experience is necessary, all you need to have is a bit of spare time and enthusiasm.
As a member of F.A.B., you are eligible to stand for election to the committee as a member, or for one of the officer posts, these being Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary and Treasurer. Job descriptions for all these posts are below, so please read on to see what's involved and whether it might suit you.
To be elected to the committee you MUST attend the A.G.M. The meeting is open to anyone, whether you wish to stand for election or not, so please do come along anyway, meet us and see what you think.
If you don't feel able to stand for the committee but would still like to get involved, you can join our list of helpers. We would keep your email address and/or mobile number and would contact you in the run-up to events to see if you could help with setting up, working the event or clearing up afterwards. You would not need to attend meetings and can decide whether or not to help at each event as they come up. If this is for you, please fill out one of our forms at the office. These will also be available at the A.G.M. if you're able to come.
I really look forward to welcoming old and new faces alike...
Petra Willoughby (Chair)
The Friends of Ark Blacklands Committee Roles
The Chair provides leadership for the committee, sets the agenda for meetings and manages meetings in line with the agenda.
The Chair should ensure that issues are properly debated and an agreement is reached. Some committee members will be better at expressing themselves than others; it is important that the chair welcomes contributions from all members of the committee so that everyone feels involved.
The Chair will ensure that all new members feel welcome and their contributions valued. The Chair will introduce them to the other members and encourage them to play an active part in the discussions at committee meetings.
To ensure the smooth running of meetings the Chair must remain impartial and make sure that all parties have a voice and the opportunity to participate in decision-making.
The Chair will work closely with the Treasurer and Secretary to ensure that F.A.B. is run effectively. As an Officer of the committee, the Chair will usually be one of designated signatories and will sign cheques on behalf of F.A.B. along with other designated signatories.
To ensure that the business of F.A.B. is conducted in accordance with the wishes of the representatives of F.A.B., to uphold the constitution of F.A.B. and prepare and submit statutory reports to Regulatory Bodies.
- Provide leadership
- Approve minutes of the last meeting
- Set the agenda for meetings
- Get to know members of the committee
- Run meetings in an efficient and timely manner ensuring that everyone is able to contribute
- Agree a date for the next meeting
- Welcome and involve new members
- Draw up the annual F.A.B. programme in consultation with the Vice-Chair, Secretary and Treasurer.
- Oversee the organisation and running of events by the general committee members
- Write the annual report in cooperation with the Secretary
- Sign cheques for F.A.B. with one other committee member
- Work closely with the school office to circulate information to parents via email, facebook or the academy's website
- Monitor and respond to communications on the F.A.B. email address, including dealing with complaints.
- Liaise with staff over funding requests.
The support provided by the Vice-Chair is invaluable. Deputising for the Chairperson when necessary, the Vice-Chair helps to ensure that the Committee and all of the events continue to run smoothly. As with the Chair, leadership, enthusiasm and energy are necessary qualities for this post.
To support the chair in all aspects of their role, to ensure that the business of F.A.B. is conducted in accordance with the wishes of the representatives of F.A.B. and to uphold the constitution.
- To chair meeting in the absence of the Chair
- To draw up annual F.A.B. programme in consultation with the Chair.
- To prepare meeting agendas by consulting with the F.A.B. Chair.
- To welcome and involve other parents into F.A.B.
- To lead parent and wider school community engagement in F.A.B. (class representatives, use of local contacts and skills).
- To prepare with the Chair and Secretary the F.A.B. annual report for the Annual General Meeting.
The Secretary ensures that F.A.B. runs smoothly and provides a link between F.A.B. and the School. This requires good organisational and communication skills and being able to stick to deadlines.
The Secretary is a key committee member as they are responsible for ensuring effective communication links between committee members and between F.A.B. and the school.
The Secretary deals with all the correspondence that F.A.B. receives and helps the Chair ensure that committee meetings run smoothly. Building up a good relationship with the school Secretary will help make sure that correspondence, sent to the school, is passed onto F.A.B. promptly.
As well as dealing with correspondence, following a committee meeting, the Secretary will need to make bookings and other arrangements for events. Confirm arrangements made by telephone in writing (by letter or e-mail). The Secretary will make arrangements for the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and help the Chair prepare the annual report. The Secretary may also be involved in co-signing cheques on behalf of F.A.B.
- Manage correspondence
- Arrange meetings
- Prepare and distribute agendas
- Take the minutes of meetings, type them up and distribute them
- Ensure that enough committee members are present to make the meeting quorate
- Sign cheques as required
- Write the annual report with the Chair
- Preparation and distribution of newsletters and other communications to parents
- Preparation of publicity flyers, posters, tickets, etc. for events
- Ensuring all information on PTA work is kept current and up to date
A key role for all committee members is to manage and control the funds that F.A.B. raises. Although all the committee members have equal responsibility for the control and management of F.A.B.’s funds, the Treasurer plays an important part in helping the committee carry out these duties properly.
To maintain up-to-date records of all F.A.B. financial transactions
- Day-to-day management of accounts, including issuing bills and receipts on behalf of F.A.B. and making payments.
- To prepare and update financial ledgers on a regular basis.
- To complete banking transactions on a regular basis.
- To organise floats for fundraising events, collect and reconcile monies raised at these events and report totals raised to the appropriate stakeholders.
- To prepare and report financial statements at F.A.B. meetings.
- To prepare a concise Financial Report for the Annual General Meeting.
- Charity registration and Gift Aid
Committee Members work alongside the Officers.
- Attend F.A.B. meetings.
- Respond promptly to F.A.B. communications (email/text)
- Get involved in the planning and running of events.
- Set up and pack away for events
- Run smaller projects.
- Encourage participation and enthusiasm for the events organised by F.A.B.
- Publicise F.A.B. events and fundraising initiatives locally
- Ensure posters are displayed around the school in good time.
Download our FAB letter for parents/carers here.