Friends of Mill Rythe Infant School (FOMS)
WELCOME TO FOMS
A very, very warm welcome to our school.
This booklet has been written by FOMS (Friends of Mill Rythe School) especially for you, as a new family within our school community. We realise it can be strange and a little nerve-wracking joining a school, and there always seems to be so many questions to ask! This booklet aims to set out all the information you will need about FOMS, which is a big part of our school life.
If after having read it (and we apologise for the length, but there is so much to tell you!) you have any questions, please do get in touch with one of the committee members, or ask via your class teacher, the school office or pop a note in our post box in reception.
We are very fortunate at our school to have a FOMS committee that is and has been such an integral part of the school community for many years. in its time FOMS has raised many thousands of pounds, which have been spent on improving equipment and resources to enhance our children's education and the facilities in school in general.
But it is much, much more than just fundraising. FOMS exists to provide closer links between home and school and it is an excellent way to bring staff, parents and friends together socially in support of the school working towards a common goal. And it's fun! Just ask any of the FOMS Committee or helpers. Obviously as in any organisation,l there are times when it is more "challenging" but, with the continued support of parents and staff, FOMS has always succeeded in its efforts.
All parents and members of the school community can get involved if they want to, even if they only have a small amount of time available.
Not all of our events are run as fundraisers. Our children's Magic shows and discos for example, are run with the aim of giving the children a good time and as a way of thanking families for their continued support to FOMS.
We have, over time, developed strong links with the local community, and are always well supported by both residents and businesses, for which we are very grateful. Many of our local shops are very generous in their donations of raffle prizes etc, and some have taken part in our Christmas and Summer Fairs, Woodies Restaurant, Daron Ford and Tesco to name a few. We have also been extremely grateful to the local businesses that have participated in a charity matching scheme like Barclays Bank plc. This has had a huge impact on our fundraising. More about charity matching below.
Our FOMS Committee consists of 4 Officers (Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary). We also have between 10 and 18 other Committee members to make up the full Committee. The Committee meet on a regular basis usually once a month or as necessary to organise our bigger events.
Our Annual General Meeting is held at the beginning of the autumn term, and this is an opportunity for all parents to come along and hear in more detail about events run and funds raised, and how the money has been spent. It is also the occasion when we elect our new Committee.
NCPTA also has a range of parental information sheets on subjects such as: literacy and numeracy, special educational needs, to name but a few. You can access this information via the NCPTA website, http://www.ncpta.org.uk/ To gain entry to the site you will need our membership number, which is 16202 and our school postcode which is PO11 0PA. Do have a look.
As in most schools, the majority of our funds are raised through the events that we run. Some of our most popular events are Fun Racing Nights, Quiz Nights and Children's Halloween/Easter Magic show and disco. We have had colouring competitions for children, also Baby and Toddler sales together with Car Boot sales, a Chocoholic Party and special events like our Harvest Market and Year 2 leavers BBQ. The project for last Christmas was tea towels! Each child drew a self portrait, which were then printed onto tea towels by class and year. Parents then purchased them in time for Christmas presents. Probably everyone's favourite events are the Christmas Fete, where children can buy presents for the families, and the Summer Fair where EVERYONE has fun!!!
So, you can see, there is always something going on!
Charity matching is a very simple practice. Companies or businesses pledge to donate to a charity/school such as ourselves an amount of money relating to the amount that an employee(s) donates or fundraises for us. We have been helped enormously in the past by this type of donation, and there are several benefits to both the companies and ourselves involved.
If you think that your employer has a matched giving scheme already in operation, or if you would like some more information about charity matching or setting up a scheme in your workplace, please talk to one of the FOMS officers, or ask in the school office.
Once money is raised from events the funds are banked straight away. It is at our FOMS Committee Meetings that the decisions on how the spend the money are taken.
FOMS funds are not generally spent on improving the fabric of the school building, as this is the responsibility fo the school Governing Body.
FOMS does have ongoing commitments every year.
All the FOMS letters we send home are printed on FOMS newsletter paper - so we are easily recognised! There are regular letters giving forthcoming dates for events, also updates and requests for help when we are planning large events. Following events, we always write to let you know how much was raised, and if we can, we tell you then what the money will be spent on.
There are lots of ways you can help and support your child through FOMS.
Offering to help at events or at other times during the year is so valuable - it really is a case of "many hands make light work". It doesn't matter if you can't help on a regular basis, or event if you can't come into school. There are always little jobs that can be done from home if you have half an hour to spare eg wrapping gifts, preparing raffle tickets etc. We really couldn't achieve what we do without the unseen "army of help" that exists in school.
You can of course if you feel able, volunteer to be a Committee Member.
You can attend the AGM and give us your ideas for fundraising events - this is also the time to ask questions or voice your opinion.
You can help by letting us know if you have any contacts or skills we could use - anything is valuable to us. There is a form at the back of the booklet to fill in and return if you are able.
Thank you for taking the time to read our brochure. We hope you now know a little more about YOUR friends of Mill Rythe School Committee.
On behalf of all the children we would like to thank you for your very valuable support which enriches their learning experienes and makes their time in school so enjoyable.
From all the FOMS Committee Members