Second Annual Volly Awards Put Unsung Parent Volunteers Center Stage

You know the expression, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” The last two years have been tough on schools, and it’s the resilience of one group—parent volunteers—that has helped keep school morale going strong. They are unsung heroes, coordinating virtual pep rallies, spirit nights and graduation celebrations, with little or no recognition. Until now!

Booster serves alongside parent volunteers at more than 4,000 schools nationally, so we’ve seen their immense efforts firsthand. That’s why we decided to establish The Volly Awards last year, as a way of saying thank you to these amazing men and women across the country.

Kyle Young, Booster’s First Annual Volly Award Winner, is a great example of an unsung hero going the extra mile to make a difference. He’s a father of two, husband and small business owner, yet he still finds time to give back by donating his talents to Hutchens Elementary School in Mobile, Ala. He has served as a PTA president, school bus driver, mentor and so much more. His efforts have made a lasting impact on the entire school community. 

Do you know an unsung school volunteer? Nominate them for the Volly Awards and bring them from behind the scenes into the spotlight. Here’s How:

  • Visit VollyAwards.com to submit as many written nominations as you’d like. Parent volunteers can be nominated by peers, school administrators, staff or themselves.
  • Tell us why the parent volunteer deserves to be celebrated and how they make a difference in their school and community. Volly Award nominations are open to all schools.
  • Monthly winners will receive a $150 Amazon Gift Card and 50 custom shirts from Booster Spirit Wear for your school. But that’s not all—the 2021 National Volly Award Winner will receive a $1,000 Visa gift card and 500 custom shirts from Booster Spirit Wear for your school!

Join us for the Second Annual Volly Awards by nominating your school’s dedicated parent volunteers today! You can also check out who won each month and be inspired by their volunteer accomplishments at VollyAwards.com.

5 Summer Tips to Start Your PTA School Year Strong

Ahhhh, summer. Those long days, outdoor adventures and beautiful nights are here. You survived the end-of-year rat race, and now you’re ready for some well-deserved relaxation. 

Start your summer with a complete break from your PTA leadership duties to allow yourself time to rest and rejuvenate. When you’re ready, take advantage of the important opportunities summer provides for a jumpstart on the upcoming school year with these five helpful tips!

Tip #1: Meet with the Executive Board

Summer is a great time to gather the executive board for an informal meeting to reflect on the past school year and discuss your association’s goals. This gives you a chance to identify specific needs, necessary changes, and volunteer gaps for the upcoming school year. 

It’s also an excellent time to get together for some fun, team-building activities that help you get to know each other a little better! Have a barbecue, talk about your summer plans, or just relax on the patio together. It’s a nice way to foster an enjoyable, cohesive team atmosphere. Just remember to follow the CDC’s COVID-19 safety precautions!

Tip #2: Check in with School Administrators

Your school administrators can be hard to catch during the school year. However, during the summer, their schedule slows down considerably, making it an ideal time for a casual touch-base. 

They’ll likely be planning for the upcoming school year, which gives you the perfect opportunity to ask about their financial needs and goals. Are they hoping to give the playground a facelift or expand technology? This insight will be valuable as you plan your fundraising goals and programs for the year ahead. 

The informal feel of summer also creates a unique space for some relationship-building conversation with your administration. Building a strong connection with your school’s leadership team is key to a successful partnership.

Tip #3: Organize Your “Back to School” Welcome Packet

A little preparation goes a long way! Use this time to pull together the information you will need for your PTA’s “Back to School” welcome packet. Include a calendar of events, important dates, and membership information. Don’t forget to save the date for the official PTA Back-to-School Week, Sept. 13-17, 2021—National PTA will be sharing yearlong solutions, resources and program opportunities to help plan your school year, engage your school community and get support for students and families.

Assembling welcome packets is an easy task for children, so don’t be afraid to enlist the kids to make it go faster. It’s the perfect activity for a rainy afternoon!

Tip #4: Begin Recruiting Volunteers for Next School Year

During the summer, people are less stressed and more likely to say yes to upcoming school-year commitments. Get a jump on recruiting additional volunteers now to start your year off with a full volunteer team. Check out the National PTA Membership page for ideas.

The best way to recruit volunteers over the summer is with a volunteer form you share online. Find out the benefits of a volunteer form, what to include on your form, and grab our free volunteer form template here.

#5: Continue to Communicate with Parents

Don’t shut down your communication channels just because school is out. Staying connected with parents and families is essential, even during summer vacation. 

You can use social media and email to check in, publicize volunteer needs, share exciting school news, and give teasers to get people excited about the fun events you have planned for the upcoming school year. Just remember to keep it light and infrequent.

The back-to-school season can be hectic, especially for active volunteers like you. These five summer tips will ease the transition and lighten the load so your PTA will be all set for another successful school year! 


Booster is the parent brand for the Boosterthon Fun Run which exists to strengthen schools by increasing funds and inspiring students through a remarkable fitness and character-building experience. Dedicated to growing intentional leaders and creating remarkable experiences, Booster is located in Atlanta, GA.  Founded by Chris Carneal, Booster serves schools in more than 37 states.