Parent Teacher Association
The purpose of the PTA is to provide a structure through which the parents/guardians of children attending Dublin 7 Educate Together National School can work together for the best possible education and welfare of their children.
The objectives of the Parent Teacher Association will be as follows:
- To represent the views of parents
- To promote a positive view of parents through liaison with the Parent Representatives on the Board of Management
- To develop partnership between the school bodies
- To inform parents of current changes in the education system, if need be
- To work as a team and to have a yearly plan
- To establish a forum through which parents can communicate their opinions and concerns regarding the school, to identify issues and possibly work towards a solution
- To establish a forum through which parents and teachers can exchange information and research in relation to education/welfare of children.
- The Parent Association can play their role by:
- To support parents, teachers and students to ensure that all children are treated in accordance with the ethos of the school.
- To support teachers, and to work with them in delivering the curriculum
- To elect a Committee and Sub-committees, e.g. Fundraising Committee, Ethics Committee.
- To ensure equal participation by all parents
- To access any training available for parents and staff of the school from other sources
- To help plan and carry-out programme of activities for the year, in consultation with the Principal and Board of Management and to run activities that involve parents and children
- To help raise funds for the school and the Parents Association, in consultation with the Principal and Board of Management
- To keep parents informed about activities planned for the school
- To influence policy development at school level
1. Finding out what information parents would like or need
2. Contributing to the school newsletter
3. Helping the teachers to set up an information meeting for parents of a particular class
What is NOT the role of the Parents Association?
- To get involved in individual complaints
- Day to day running of the school
- Appointment of teachers
- Carrying out activities without consultation with Principal and/or Board of Management
- Portraying the school, its staff, the Board of Management and pupils in a negative manner
Roles and Responsibilities of PTA
PTA Committee roles
The Chair provides leadership for the committee sets the agenda for meetings and manages meetings in line with the agenda.
The Chair should ensure that issues are properly debated and an agreement is reached. Some committee members will be better at expressing themselves than others; it is important that the chair welcomes contributions from all members of the committee so that everyone feels involved.
New members of the committee may feel awkward at first. The Chair should welcome all new members, introduce them to the other members and encourage them to play an active part in the discussions at committee meetings.
Occasionally, personality clashes may arise. The Chair should remain impartial, call the meeting to order without upsetting the parties involved, and make sure that the committee’s decisions are not hindered in any way.
The Chair needs to work closely with the Treasurer and Secretary to ensure that the PTA is run effectively. As a committee officer, the Chair is often one of the people to sign cheques on behalf of the PTA, normally along with either the Treasurer or Secretary.Key responsibilities:
- provide leadership
- sign the approved minutes of the last meeting
- set the agenda for meetings
- get to know members of the committee
- call the meeting to order when it is time
- agree a date for the next meeting
- welcome and involve new members
- close the meeting
- ask for apologies for absence
- write the annual report in cooperation with the Secretary
- follow the agenda and manage the meeting
- sign cheques for the PTA with one other committee member
The Secretary is a key committee member as they are responsible for ensuring effective communication links between committee members and between the PTA and the school.
The Secretary deals with all the correspondence that the PTA receives and helps the Chair ensure that committee meetings run smoothly. Building up a good relationship with the school Secretary will help make sure that correspondence, sent to the school, is passed onto the PTA promptly. With the agreement of the head teacher the PTA Secretary can usually arrange to leave PTA notices with the school Secretary for distribution with school mailings to parents or for distribution via Parentmail.
As well as dealing with correspondence, following a committee meeting, the Secretary will need to make bookings and other arrangements for events. Confirm arrangements made by telephone in writing (by letter or e-mail). The Secretary will make arrangements for the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and help the Chair prepare the annual report. The Secretary may also be involved in co-signing cheques on behalf of the PTA.Key responsibilities:
- deal with correspondence
- write up the minutes of meetings
- prepare agendas
- distribute minutes to all the committee
- call meetings - giving plenty of notice
- make meeting & event arrangements
- keep a record of attendance at meetings
- take notes during meetings
- ensure that enough committee members are present to make the meeting quorate (this number is defined in your PTA constitution)
- co-sign cheques as required
- write the annual report with the Chair
- preparation and distribution of newsletters and other communications to parents
- preparation of publicity flyers, posters, tickets, etc. for events
A key role for all committee members is to manage and control the funds the PTA raises. Although all the committee members have equal responsibility for the control and management of PTA funds the Treasurer plays an important part in helping the committee carry out these duties properly..
The Treasurer should record all income and expenditure. This can be a simple accounts book or a computerised system. The Treasurer should record details of the amounts received and spent and have the details available for every committee meeting plus:
- the balance of funds
- committed expenditure
- income, expenditure and profit from each event held
The Treasurer should report on the current financial position at each committee meeting and this should be recorded in the minutes. The report should include an update on funds received and spent since the last report. If the Treasurer is unable to attend a committee meeting, a written report should be sent to the Chair at least one or two days before the meeting. All financial decisions taken should be recorded in the minutes of the meeting. The Treasurer also
- liaises with the bank
- pays money into the bank account and reconciles bank statements
- advises the bank of agreed changes to the bank mandate, ie those authorised to sign cheques
- raises and signs cheques with a second committee member co-signing. The person co-signing must see what is being paid for before signing. The Treasurer should sign last and keep all original invoices
- withdraws money to provide a cash float for events
- monitors funds held on account and discusses with the bank or building society, the use of higher rate investment accounts. Any decision to use an investment account, including the amount to be put in the account, should be taken by the whole committee.
- ensure regular payments, for example, NCPTA membership, are made on time to guarantee benefits and take advantage of any discounts
- arrange appropriate licenses for events
- maintain the financial records
- prepare and co-sign cheques as required
- report income & expenditure at meetings
- count and bank monies
- liaise with the bank
- charity registration and Gift Aid
- regular and other payments
- draw up the annual accounts
Ordinary Committee Members
Ordinary Committee Members work alongside the Officers, contributing ideas, helping to organise events or running with smaller projects. They also have an important role to play alongside the officers of the PTA in ensuring good communication with the rest of the school, encouraging participation and enthusiasm for the events organised by the PTA.
Class Reps ensure good communication with the parents and teachers of their class. They organise social events for the parents & carers of their class. They may run with small projects for the school, organise stalls and helpers for Summer and Christmas Fairs and help out where they can with PTA events.Key responsibilities:
- maintain a class list, email distribution group and text message group where possible (this should be renewed each year in line the Data Protection Act rather than carried forward)
- forward PTA newsletters and other emails to their class
- provide feedback and ideas from class to the PTA Committee
- welcome new parents to the school
- organise two cake / healthy alternative sales
- liaise with class teacher for any specific help required from PTA, e.g. making costumes
- arrange Christmas and end of year cards and class gift for teachers and TAs
- arrange social events for their class
- help out at and recruit volunteers for PTA events