Lehi, Utah—The National PTA has recognized Liberty Hills Elementary as a 2020-2022 School of Excellence for their accomplishments in building strong, effective family-school partnerships that enrich the educational experience and overall well-being of all students. Liberty Hills is one of only 351 schools nationwide and seven in the State of Utah to receive this honorable designation.
“We are thrilled to honor the accomplishments of Liberty Hills Elementary and the Liberty Hills PTA,” said Anna King, president of National PTA. “Their efforts have made a positive impact for all students, families and their school, which has been and continues to be more important than ever, especially given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
National PTA’s School of Excellence program is a year-long commitment to improving family-school partnerships. Throughout the year, PTAs and schools collect feedback from their school communities to create and implement plans of action to make a difference for every child. Through the School of Excellence program, PTAs and families become key partners in decision-making and school improvement efforts. The program opens the lines of communication and critical thinking within school communities to make data-driven decisions that yield positive, long-term results.
“It has been especially critical to have open lines of communication, strong family-school partnerships and families as key partners in decision-making processes during the COVID-19 pandemic. We must continue to keep these practices going in the new school year to address learning gaps experienced during the pandemic and support students’ social and emotional needs,” said Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “National PTA’s School of Excellence program can help strengthen or rebuild family-school partnerships while we continue to recover from the effects of COVID-19 and ensure students, families and schools have what they need to thrive.”
“I am absolutely over the moon that Liberty Hills has received this distinguished award from the National PTA,” said Zach Eagar, principal of Liberty Hills. “This recognition serves as a testament to the great work that can be accomplished as schools and families work together to achieve a united vision. The PTA is an incredible ally and partner in our work to support the learning and well-being of our Liberty Hills students.”
Speaking to some of the behind the scenes work that took place to merit the award, Angelee Aedo, current President of the Liberty Hills PTA, outlined specific processes for improvement and celebration. “We first surveyed our patrons to see where they felt like we could improve,” said President Aedo. “From the survey results, we identified that we could work on improving communication and community involvement. We worked hard on making sure we communicated on all the fronts, both from the school and from the PTA.”
Beyond enhanced communication efforts, the PTA and school has sought to bolster community involvement as well. The PTA worked with the school to host a penny and food drive for a local food pantry, provide a wonderful teacher appreciation event with the support of many local small business owners, participate in PTA Reflections, and hold our own Liberty Hills Celebration day to help our community see the many great things that are happening at Liberty Hills Elementary.
“I’m thrilled that we received this award but even more thrilled to keep working on building our community together,” shared President Aedo. “Bringing communities together can take hard work, but we’ve shown we can band together for good thus far and will continue to do so. Family engagement is one of the things that helps make schools successful. Being on the same team is so important. As I’ve worked with Principal Eagar and his staff, I’ve been shown time and time again just how much they love and care for the children and want them to be successful. As our school has been designated as a School of Excellence, I recognize the great work that has been done but realize we are not done yet. We will continue to push forward and work for good.”
In celebration of its noteworthy designation as a National PTA School of Excellence, the school will be hosting a celebration event on the evening of Monday, October 11, from 5:00-7:00pm. The event will take place at Liberty Hills Elementary.
For more information about the National PTA School of Excellence program, visit PTA.org/Excellence.