The PRC plays an important role within the school though it should not be confused with the role of the Board of Governors.
THE BOARD OF GOVERNORS
The Board of Governors is responsible for the effective management and development of the schools, in particular for financial oversight, with the day-to-day responsibility of the running of the school being delegated to the Headmaster. The Board is responsible for the founding vision of the Trust being maintained, with particular oversight of the spiritual development and the setting of policies.
THE PARENT REPRESENTATIVE COUNCIL
The PRC Constitution states that “the objects of the Council shall be:
- To facilitate and promote communication between the parent body and the school management including the Board of Trustees, Headmaster, teachers and staff;
- To undertake specific projects to improve school facilities or promote the welfare of the school;
- To raise money and receive donations and to use, invest or dispose of such monies in such a manner that is in best interests of the school;
- To assist in all manner of extra-mural and special school functions.”
In short, the PRC is very much a support group for the school, seeking to excite and involve the parents in ways to help improve the school and to provide assistance at functions and events. It is NOT an SDA/SDC.
As such, therefore, the role of the PRC is not to debate school issues or deliberate on school policies. If individual parents have issues regarding what happens at GATEWAY HIGH SCHOOL they are reminded to raise them with the relevant person, as per the policy document on Channels of Communication.
The members of the PRC can play a valuable role as being an ear to the general concerns of the parent body, whereby any such feeling may be aired in an appropriate forum and not spread around in car park talk. Members of the PRC committee who are approached by members of the parent body should firstly ask the member of the parent body if they have raised the matter with the appropriate person(s). The PRC Committee, however, does not exist as a court to hear complaints or concerns of individual parents.
In recent years (2008) the Board of Governors introduced the PTP (PARENT TRUST PARTNERSHIP) as a means of developing the relationship between the PRC of GATEWAY HIGH SCHOOL (and the equivalent body, the PAC, of the GATEWAY PRIMARY SCHOOL) with the Board of Governors. The principal reason for this gathering was to discuss the proposed increase in school fees in advance of the required Parents’ Fees’ Meeting, so that, through the PRC members, parents would be in a better position to know what the situation was with regard to fees. At the parents meeting the PRC could explain to the parent body that they had thoroughly investigated the finances and accounts, had raised concerns and discussed the situation - and as the parents had voted in the members of the PRC who had worked hard through the year in different ways, so the parents should accept the insights, recommendations and input from the members of the PRC.
The PRC AGM is an occasion when the PRC Committee reports back to the Parent Body what they have been doing during the previous year – events they have organised; money they have raised; projects they have assisted with financially. The Constitution requires a Chairman’s Report, a Treasurer’s Report, the Statement of Accounts and Balance Sheet, for this purpose. Election of Committee members take place at this meeting.