top of page

🎨 Reflections Art Contest

Explore the arts and express yourself!

All CES students are encouraged to participate in the CES PTA Reflections Art Contest. The theme for 2023-24 is "I am Hopeful Because..." Use it as inspiration for your creative submissions to this year's Reflections program.​

The CES PTA is accepting entries in the following categories:

  • Visual Arts

  • Photography

  • Music Composition

  • Literature / Creative Writing


About Reflections

Reflections is the National PTA program that encourages students to reflect on a specific theme and create original artwork for fun and recognition. This program provides opportunities for student recognition and access to the arts that boost student confidence and success.

All students in Kindergarten through 6th grade are invited to create theme-based artwork in the categories of literature, musical composition, photography, or visual arts and submit to the PTA Reflections Arts Contest. This competition encourages students to explore the arts and express themselves by providing positive recognition for their artistic efforts.


How It Works

  1. Students submit their completed work of art with an artist statement to in the Fall.

  2. A panel of judges select winners from the school and forward the winning entries in each age division and art category to the Fairfax County Council PTA.

  3. Council PTAs select winning entries and submit the winning entries for each age division and art category to the Virginia PTA. Council PTAs hold Student Awards Celebrations in late winter/early spring.

  4. Virginia PTA selects and submits state winning entries to National PTA to compete against students from across the United States and holds a Student Awards Celebration in April.

  5. National PTA selects and announces winners of the national-level contest in May.


Student Recognition

All students participating in the CES Reflections competition have a chance to win prizes from the PTA for each of the entry categories. Participating students also will receive recognition by the school and the CES PTA via certificate of participation, a Reflections art display in the school, CES morning announcements, PTA communications, and other potential means.

​Category winners in our local-level CES contest also will have the chance to move up and compete at the Fairfax County Council of PTAs, Virginia PTA, and National PTA competition levels. Competitors who reach the National PTA level have the opportunity to win:

  • Outstanding Interpretation Award: $800 Young Artist Scholarship; Gold Medal; Certificate of Outstanding Interpretation; work featured in the virtual exhibition; $200 Prize for Local PTA Unit

  • Award of Excellence: $200 Young Artist Scholarship; Silver Medal; Certificate of Excellence; work featured in the virtual exhibition

  • Merit Award: Bronze Medal; Certificate of Merit; work featured in the virtual exhibition


How to Enter

After following the Reflections entry requirements provided above, students should follow the steps below to submit their Reflections entries to the CES PTA by the November 15th deadline.

Step 1: Students must download the Reflections entry form or pick up a paper entry from the PTA Bulletin Board at school.

Step 2: When filling out the entry form, only fill out the student information section; do not alter the pre-filled PTA section at the top of the form.

Step 3: The form must be hand-signed by both the student and a parent/guardian. When the form is completed and signed, take a photo of it or scan it; this is the final version of the entry form that the student should submit during the entry process.

Step 4: To submit the student's contest entry, choose only ONE of the following methods:

  • For entries with smaller file sizes, the student or parent/guardian should text or email the entry form and digital artwork together in a single message to with the student's name and grade in the email subject line.

  • The entry form should be saved with the following file name format: studentlastname.firstname.category.grade.entryform (ex: Smith.Joseph.literature.3rd.entryform)

  • The file for the actual art entry should be saved with the following file name format: studentlastname.firstname.category.grade.artwork (ex: Smith.Joseoph.literature.3rd.artwork)

  • If the format of the student's original artwork is NOT digital, then the student must submit a digital photo of the original hardcopy artwork along with the entry form during the online entry process, as a visual reference for the judges.

  • Any artwork originally created in hardcopy format must also be submitted to the main office (attention: PTA) to be saved for potential use at future contest stages (e.g., the county-level competition will required hardcopy submissions).

If none of the above entry submission options work, or to ask other questions, please contact for assistance.


More Information

For more information regarding category rules and guidelines, evaluation criteria, and a full list of contest due dates and timelines, click here.


Contest Judges Needed!

In order to make this contest available to CES students each year, the CES PTA relies on volunteers to run the contest and line up a panel of qualified judges from within our local community - such as teachers at the school or local artists - with expertise in the respective categories to evaluate student entries.

If you would like to volunteer as judge for our 2023-24 Reflections Contest, click here.


Recent Posts

See All

📰 News & Announcements (10.15.2023)

The days may be getting shorter, but the opportunities for connection are abundant. This fall, we celebrate the beauty of change, the comfort of tradition, and the warmth of shared moments. We look

📰 News & Announcements (10.01.2023)

Happy October! As we bid farewell to picnics and sunscreen and embrace cozy sweaters and pumpkin-spiced everything, our team has been working diligently to plan out the activities for this fall. Check


bottom of page