This blog is under construction. Still to come are certificate templates. The "Printables" page is not quite ready, but most of that information can be accessed from links found down the right side of the blog. Everything else is up to date. Feel free to send us an email if you have questions.
- Reba, Chantelle & Liz

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Frequently Asked Questions

Who participates in Inspirations? Inspirations is a program for Charter Schools. Currently, it only takes place in Utah, but we hope to eventually expand and be a nationwide program.

What is the entry fee? When is it due and who pays it? The entry fee for 2009-2010 is $100. It is due on Oct 1st, 2009. Each Charter school who is participating in the program pays the entry fee. No students or parents need to worry about the entry fee.

What are the categories? Statewide, we have 8 categories: Literary Composition, Musical Composition, Visual Art, 3D Art, Photography, Theatre, Choreography / Dance, and Film / Video. However, your school may choose to participate in all 8 categories or just a select few. Please check with your school's Inspirations representative to find out which categories your school is participating in.

How many entries can a student submit? Each student may submit one entry for each category their school offers.

What are the age divisions? We have 4 age divisions:
- Kindergarten - 2nd grade
- 3rd grade - 5th grade
- 6th grade - 8th grade
- 9th grade - 12th grade

Will everyone win an award? This will depend on your individual school. Some schools will choose to give everyone a participation award or certificate. However, only 2 entries per category and age group will advance to compete at the Regional level. At the Regional level, again 2 entries per category and age group will win medals and advance to compete at the State level. At the State level, trophies will be given to 2 entries per category and age level. While this is technically a "competition," the point of the program is to encourage our students to be creative and express their individuality. We hope that the awards assemblies will reflect that purpose.

How do you find your judges? Judges for the program come from the community. Each school will be responsible for finding the judges for their school level competition. The judges should be impartial and not connected to the school. The judging will be blind-judging. The schools hosting the Regional and State level assemblies will be in charge of finding judges for those levels of competition. They should be different judges than the ones used at the school level. Your judges should have knowledge, expertise or experience in the category they will be judging. They can be found anywhere in the community: Librarians, Authors, teachers at another school, local artists, newspaper or TV media, professional photographers, interior decorators, dance instructors or professional dancers etc...

Are there any entry examples from previous years we can view? Coming soon.

Will you have a CD player or a TV so that I can show my child's work? That will be up to the school's running the awards assemblies. We do encourage them to have those things available so that all the students entries may be viewed and enjoyed by all.

What if we miss the deadline? Will you extend it? The Region and State deadlines will not be changed. If you've missed the entry fee deadline and wish to participate the current year, please contact us immediately. Depending on the time frame, we may be able to include you. If not, we will be sure to get you information for next years program. As for the school level entries deadline, that will be up to your individual school if they will accept your entry or extend the entry due date. Please contact your school's Inspirations representative for information about that.


angie said...

I think this is fantastic that someone took the initiative to put this program together for our charter schools. Our school is planning on participating next year for the first time and we are excited to do so.

The question has come up several times with our PTO as to why the contest begins in the fall vs. the spring when students would have the full year's work to select from and if there are any plans to change it in the future?

Anything I can pass on to them? Thanks!

Chantelle said...

We'll be excited to have you join us!

There are no plans to change the time frame for the program. We wanted to stay away from the craziness that happens at the end of the year as well as avoid the PTA's Reflections schedule. We also needed to schedule enough time between the assemblies to allow for judging and such.

Most importantly, we wanted to allow the students to create based on the theme, to see what the theme inspired them to create, rather than find something they have already done that could fit in.

However, at the State awards assembly we do announce the theme for the next school year. This year that will be on March 26th. You're more than welcome to start your school level program for it at that time if you'd like to. Just keep in mind that you'd have a lot more time to keep track of entries for Region. The date we give for the school level assembly is when they need to be completed by. So, do what works for your school.

Anonymous said...

You guys need to adopt the procudure of notifying the State winners. It's devastating for kids to go to the state finals and they win nothing. You make them stand up in front of everyone, make them feel important, and then they win nothing. I have been involved in such programs for most of my life and at the State finals it's always been the winners who are invited. That is why you don't have such a great turnout. If you want a good turnout, tell the winners, and they will invite EVERYONE they can to come. Do it and you will see a huge increase in attendance.

Chantelle said...

Anonymous - I'm sorry that I haven't replied to your comment yet - I haven't been getting the notifications that comments have been left and will work on correcting that right away.

Thank you for your feed back. One of our goals for Inspirations is to celebrate every entry - not just those that win. It is a noteworthy accomplishment to make it to the region or state level and we hope that all the children participating feel they have accomplished something great. If that message is not getting across to them, we will try harder. Your suggestion is something that we will discuss.