Voluntary Fund Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Voluntary Fund?
A monetary fund which is contributed to by parents and alumni to enable us to provide opportunities for our students which go beyond the core curriculum and provides our children with additional opportunities. The fund will be used for the things that the school may not otherwise be able to afford in the current funding climate.
Is it compulsory to contribute if I have children at the school?
No, it is completely voluntary.
If I don’t contribute, will this have any impact on my child’s progress at school?
None at all. This fund will only be used to enhance our facilities and will have no impact on the quality of education provided at the school.
Is it common for schools to operate voluntary funds?
Our research has shown us that voluntary funds are well established in non-state schools and have become increasingly wide-spread in state funded schools, as government funding has failed to keep pace with schools’ requirements.
How much would a family be expected to give?
As it is voluntary, there is no set limit, but looking at other schools who have a voluntary fund, a good guide appears to be £10 - £30 each month.
Can I choose how much to pay each year?
Yes of course, all contributions will be equally valued.
Can I make a one–off contribution?
Yes, you can make a one-off contribution or as many as you would like to. You will not be tied in and can cancel a regular contribution at any time if your circumstances change.
Do you have any particular projects in mind?
All funds generated will be used to support whichever projects are considered most important to the school at the time; at the moment, we would very much like to improve our performing arts facilities, so have an ambition to build a drama theatre, similar to the one at Hatch End High School, but on a slightly smaller scale. This would then allow us to re-model the facilities in the Gristwood Centre, so extending and enhancing our Music facilities.
Why do you need to extend your music facilities?
We really value the performing arts and try to encourage as many of our students as possible to take up a musical instrument when they start with us; this ensures that we have a healthy supply of musicians to service our many ensembles and orchestras that you will have seen performing at our concerts and productions. The opportunity to perform really enriches a young person’s educational experience and we want every child who wishes, to have the opportunity to take individual or small group music lessons. Unfortunately at present, we are constrained by the availability of teaching spaces to do so.
How do I set up a regular contribution?
To set up regular monthly contributions: you will be able to set this up with your bank or on your banking app as a standing order using the following details:
Beneficiary name: Nower Hill High School Bank: Lloyds
Sort Code: 30-15-95 Account Number: 16154668
Please use the full name and Form of your youngest child who attends the School as a reference.
How do I set up a parent pay contribution?
You can make a one off or multiple adhoc contributions by using your regular Parent Pay account and selecting the item Voluntary Fund. You will be able to set a donation amount between £10 and £1000 maximum per academic year.
I am a UK taxpayer – can the school benefit from Gift Aid?
Yes we can and you can complete the form linked here
Will you be trying to fund raise in any other way?
Our PTFA fund raise throughout the year for the ‘added extras’, for example they recently purchased equipment for the Duke of Edinburgh expeditions, contributed to the tiered seating for productions and purchased an embroidering machine for the Technology department. We also submit bids to various organisations when the opportunity arises, for example The Wolfson Foundation. In addition, we will be approaching our Nower Hill Alumnae to seek their support.
What do your staff think of a voluntary fund being established?
We held a staff survey at the same time as the parents’ survey and whilst none of us are totally comfortable with it, believing that it is absolutely the role of government to fund state schools, we are none the less realistic about the fact that this is now very common in schools and those that are bold about it seem to have the best facilities!
Who do I contact with further questions about making my contribution?
If you have any further questions, or need help with completing any of the forms, please email firstname.lastname@example.org