All current parents & guardians are members of the Parent Guardian Association (PGA).
The Mission of the PGA is to:
- Communicate: Promote better communication between parents/guardians of students, faculty, staff, and the Board of the school
- Fundraise: Provide supplemental funds for the school through fundraising events
- Volunteer: Support the school and its programs to help establish and maintain an effective learning environment
Volunteers are at the heart of The Overlake School! Volunteers help make Overlake a great community and a wonderful learning environment for our children. Volunteering is a wonderful way to get to know other parents/guardians, faculty, staff, and students. We have all kinds of opportunities available to fit your availability and skills.
Below is a listing of various volunteer opportunities with descriptions and expected time commitments.
Leadership roles allow parents/guardians to take a more active role in driving different PGA led programs throughout the year. These are more time-intensive options that involve defining the program and coordinating volunteers throughout the year.
PGA Executive Committee member:
The Executive Committee of the PGA is comprised of the President, First Vice President, two Second Vice Presidents, Vice President of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Vice President of PGA Communications, Secretary, and Treasurer.
Responsibilities for each role are defined in the Overlake PGA By-laws.
5-15 hours a month
Grade Level Reps (GLR):
Each grade level would ideally have 2-3 Grade Level Representatives (GLRs). The primary mission of the GLRs is to build a strong sense of community among the families in each grade by serving as ambassadors and knowledgeable resources about the PGA and the school. They inform and guide families about PGA activities, invite and organize volunteers, support and participate in community building efforts, and serve as a conduit of information between administration, the PGA, and parents.
2-3 days / month for an average of 6 hours a month
Committee Chair (OFTA, OAC, ParentNet, FSA):
Each committee needs 1-2 passionate individuals to create and execute the plan for the year. They’re responsible for setting event dates, coordinating volunteers, etc. (See additional details below.)
2-3 days / month for an average of 6 hours a month
Grade-Level Social/Meetup Host:
GLRs strive to have a monthly gathering of families to foster intra-grade community. The host has the freedom to choose the activity (coffee, lunch, walk), location, and time for the event.
Single day event for 1-2 hours
Reception Committee for 8th Grade Promotion (7th grade families only):
7th grade parents are in charge of the 8th Grade Promotion Reception so that 8th grade parents can enjoy themselves. Co-chairs and committee members are needed to organize the reception and also be available that evening. 8th Grade Promotion is held on the Thursday evening before Senior Graduation weekend in June. The co-chairs need to meet with MS/US Coordinator and MS Head in January to begin the planning process. At that time, they will pass along all information regarding the planning of the reception.
Senior Parent Soiree (12th grade families only):
The Senior Parent Soiree takes place in September at the Head of School’s house. This evening event provides a setting for parents to gather and celebrate the exciting year ahead. Important senior year logistics are shared with parents such as college counseling, yearbook, and graduation weekend. The school coordinates the event and caters the dinner and drinks.
Senior Brunch (11th and 12th grade families only):
Two 12th grade co-chairs and 11th and 12th grade committee members are needed to plan and coordinate the Senior Brunch. The brunch traditionally takes place on a Saturday morning the week before graduation in June. The brunch is attended by parents/guardians, students, advisors, Head of School, US Head, and Assistant US Head. This is a special event where the advisors recognize each graduating student.
Graduation Night Party (11th and 12th grade families only):
Two 12th grade co-chairs and 11th and 12th grade committee members are needed to organize and chaperone the Graduation Night Party. The Grad Night Party is an all-night party that immediately follows the reception - a favorite student tradition! The party is often held at multiple locations in the area and students travel by charter bus. Details are kept secret to ensure the safety of the graduates and create a surprise for them.
All-School BBQ (September):
- Annual event hosted by the PGA. Volunteers are needed to decorate the campus, welcome/check-in families, and break down the BBQ at the end.
- Single day event, 3-4 hours total
Book Fair (October):
- Annual event hosted by the librarian. Volunteers are needed to set up the event, write up student purchases, and break down the fair at the end.
- Single day event, 2-3 hours total
Winter Banquet (November/December):
- The Winter Banquet is an Overlake tradition that brings students together by homerooms to enjoy a meal together. The space is decorated, students and faculty/staff dress up, and the food is delicious. Volunteer opportunities focus on decorating and clean up following the event.
- Single day event, 2-3 hours total
Owls Night Out (March):
- Owls Night Out is our annual party for parents, faculty/staff, as well as alums and alum families (ages 21+). It’s a chance for everyone to come together and celebrate our wonderful community. It typically features entertainment, catered food and hosted bar, and lots and lots of fun and merriment. Unlike a formal sit-down dinner, Owls Night Out is a chance to mix, mingle, and make friends. This is a ticketed event, and each year varies in terms of location and other factors. Except for a paddle raise on occasion, this event is not a fundraiser. Optional raffle tickets and Owls Night In community building events may also be offered. Most importantly, Owls Night Out is meant to be fun for everyone! Two to three volunteers are needed to serve on the Owls Night Out Committee, which helps with determining various event details and logistics, including messaging, décor, activities, format, and more.
- Planning ideally begins in November, with bi-weekly meetings in the fall, then weekly meetings beginning in January; 1-2 days / month for an average of 6 hours a month
- For the actual day of the event, an additional 10-12+ volunteers may be requested for a few hours to help with set up, check in, clean up, etc.
Diversity & Cultural Celebration (April):
- This is a new event the PGA plans to host. Similar to the All-School BBQ, we are planning an event in the spring. Volunteers are needed to decorate the campus, welcome/check-in families, and break down at the end.
- Single day event, 3-4 hours total
Overlake’s Board of Trustees are the governors and stewards of the school. The Board is responsible for policy decisions, financial oversight, and for the long-term success and stability of the school. They are not involved in the day-to-day operations of the school. The Governance Committee of the Board is involved in the identification and recruitment of new trustees. The Board consists of several Board Committees, each of which is chaired or co-chaired by trustees.
The FSA Committee is dedicated to showing our teachers and staff how much they are appreciated throughout the year and is a fun team builder for parents/guardians as well. We have approximately one event per quarter throughout the year. The time commitment varies and can be as little as one hour or up to several hours depending on volunteer availability.
Single day events, as needed (typically 3 hours per event)
OAC supports all athletics programs at The Overlake School. OAC benefits Overlake's 400+ student-athletes through the promotion of athletic events, enhancing school spirit, and community service. OAC members volunteer to help at a variety of events which support all of our athletic programs including Senior Athlete recognition, specific team spirit events, and community charity events like Coaches vs. Cancer. This committee is led by co-chairs and meets regularly throughout the school year. More information can be found on the OAC website.
OAC member (typically 2 hours per event)
OFTA provides volunteers and financial support for all of the arts programs at The Overlake School. Volunteers assist the department by providing production assistance during performance rehearsals, help with costuming, provide Covid vaccination checks and supply refreshments at performances. OFTA provides supplemental funding for outside guest lecturers for the benefit of the students and funds unanticipated equipment and instrumental needs that arise. Volunteers host ARTSFest, an annual celebration of all things Arts at Overlake with an emphasis on the visual arts. More information can be found on the OFTA website. Volunteer time commitments vary widely from an hour at an event to several hours if helping with production.
OFTA volunteers assist at drama performances and concerts with lobby essentials such as ticket sales and refreshments.
Time commitment approximately 1-2 hours
OFTA parents/guardians act as liaisons between faculty and student performers and artists, coordinating meals for long rehearsals, work parties, post-production celebrations, and end of show/concert thank you gifts and senior recognition.
Time commitment 6-10 hours for parent/guardian lead, 1-2 hours for assistants
As talents allow, OFTA parents/guardians assist with costume fittings and alterations, laundry, dry cleaning, checking supply levels of makeup, etc.
Time commitment is highly variable depending on talents and what the volunteers are willing and able to do.
OFTA, in conjunction with the Arts Department, organizes and hosts ArtsFest, an annual celebration of all things Arts at Overlake with an emphasis on the visual arts. Volunteers help prepare and hang student artwork, arrange for food, organize a scavenger hunt and help with hands-on arts opportunities.
Time commitment of approximately 4-6 hours for committee leads, 1-2 hours for assistants in prepping for event and the evening of the event.
OFTA provides financial assistance for specialty workshops, productions, and other arts events through flower sales and other fundraising projects.
Overlake Fund Reps help with the Overlake Fund each fall. The Overlake Fund is our most important annual fundraising initiative, and makes an immediate, positive impact on every aspect of the school. The Overlake Fund is critical to providing ~5% of the school’s operating budget. All gifts support the school’s most important priorities including faculty and staff salaries and professional development, athletics, the arts, classroom technology, classroom supplies, financial aid, maintenance of our beautiful campus, and more. Overlake Fund Reps are trained by the Development team. Each grade level generally has two to four Overlake Fund Reps who promote and emphasize participation to families in their grade. They help parents understand that each and every gift, at every level, makes a meaningful difference, and benefits all our students, faculty, and programs throughout the current school year.
Senior Class Legacy Fund Reps have a similar role as Overlake Fund Reps, helping to promote and emphasize participation to senior families for their Senior Class Legacy Fund. The Senior Class Legacy Fund effort was launched in 2013-14, as a way for families with graduating seniors to share their appreciation for the education their children received at Overlake. All gifts to this effort support the school’s endowment for financial aid, which strengthens our commitment to accessibility and inclusivity.
10-12 hours total during the 5-week campaign (September-October)
Parent Ambassadors assist the Admission Office and introduce The Overlake School to interested families in a warm, professional, and knowledgeable way. Additionally, PAs welcome new students and their families by providing accurate information and support while encouraging positive, social interaction as they integrate into the Overlake community
PAs are expected to participate in monthly meetings, volunteer at two Saturday admission events, and two or three more evening events for 2 hours each during admission season. Tours and phone calls volunteering as needed.
ParentNet is a national program that provides a structured, robust forum where parents/guardians gather to discuss topics related to a specific grade level. With the help of ParentNet facilitators from each grade level, parents/guardians meet twice a year. ParentNet is a parent-directed program designed to facilitate communication, promote networking, and foster mutual support among parents/guardians of the same grade level. Twice a year (fall and spring), each grade will have the opportunity to meet to discuss mutually agreed upon topics. These two-hour discussions are scheduled during the day or in the evening and may touch on technology use, alcohol and drug use, money, curfews, discipline, driving, eating problems, parties, safety, sexual activity, self-esteem, study habits, etc. More information can be found on the ParentNet website.
Each grade has 2-3 facilitators that attend a general training meeting at the beginning of each school year and facilitate ParentNet Meetings twice a year for your grade level.
3-4 days / year for an average of 2 hours per day
On occasion, parents/guardians could connect and volunteer with Overlake alums by offering to do a guest lecture, book talk, company tour for alums, etc.
Interested? Please contact Director of Alumni Engagement Christian Fulghum (‘77) at email@example.com.
Time would vary depending on the volunteer’s capacity and the project.