NFES Reflections Coordinators: Kathryn Ray  & Jessica Quearry



“I am hopeful because…”

We wanted to share the new theme of our amazing Reflections Program!  Reflections is a National PTA arts recognition program that helps students channel that creative energy and ideas, explore their own thoughts and feelings, develop artistic literacy, increase confidence, and find a love for learning that will help them become more successful not only in school, but in life.


Students in pre-K through grade 12 create original works of art in response to a
theme. The theme for the 2023-2024 program year is I am hopeful because…  Students submit their completed works of art in one, or all, of the available arts categories:

 Dance Choreography

 Film Production


 Music Composition


Visual Arts


While the primary focus of Reflections is a celebration of creativity through positive recognition, finalists from local PTAs will move on to their council PTA (if applicable), then finalists from councils will move on to the state round.


Important things to remember:


1) START EARLY!  Start planning your ideas and be thinking of how you can create your project


2). All students K-5 are eligible to participate and there are a variety of categories to enter. You can enter a project in one category, or in multiple categories.


3). Kathryn Ray and Jessica Quearry are the NFES PTA Coordinators this year and can answer any questions you might have via email at

4) Instructions on how to upload entries are found here: Upload information

 Final entries are due by October 13! 


We can't wait to see all the wonderful ideas and projects that come to life!


Program Background 

In 1969, Colorado’s PTA President Mary Lou Anderson developed the first Reflections program to encourage students to explore their talents and express themselves by giving positive recognition for their artistic efforts.  Since that time, millions of students have benefited from the program.


The program is designed to enhance quality arts education for students in Pre-K through grade 12. As participants in the program, students are encouraged to create works in various art categories.


Students submit artwork to Local PTAs. Works are judged by Local PTAs and the winning entries advance to the Council, District, and/or State PTA round, depending on the State structure. Top entries from each State PTA Reflections contest advance to National PTA for the final round of judging.


Each Spring, PTA districts present state winners with Certificates and Ribbons for Excellence in each grade division and category as well as Awards of Merit for in each grade division and category.  There are also Outstanding Interpretation winners in each grade division and category that are recognized at the Virginia PTA’s Annual Conference with certificates and medals.


Each June, National PTA awards 6 outstanding Interpretations awards, 3 Awards of Excellence for each category in each division and 5 Awards of Merit for each category in each division.