Question: How do we elect our first board members

We just are now in the process of starting up a PTO for our school. There are four of us women involved in the process. Two of the women have famiy members on the school board and seem to want to make the PTO about fund raising mostly. The other two (me and another) want to start the PTO as a way of opening the doors of communciatin betwen the school board and the PTO. We do not have a PTO board yet. The two us that want the PTO for , at least at first , to be for commincation , do not feel taht the two with family members on the school board should be officers or at least not be the ones to attend the school board meeting. We do not want to make this just another extension of the school board but a place for Parents to be informed about what is going on in our school. The more parents that become involved then we would concider and like to have one or two fund raisers a year. But right now to start just for the open lines of commincation. How do we go about having a meeting were by we can elect officers? Not just from among the four of us but open it up to all the parent of the school to be allowed to put in nominations ad then to be able to come and be apart of the first election?

Asked by Shannonaleab



Community Advice

badpants writes:
PTO Today recently posted a great article on making a strategic plan. My first suggestion would be to dive into that! I think it can explain a lot about goals and objectives and how you can integrate fundraising and communication into your group. It's not an uncommon struggle, most parent groups that I know, mine included, have the same struggles. What I have found is that it's kind of an ebb and flow, some years fundraising takes more center stage and other years communication is the top priority. About your other issues, by-laws will determine every aspect of your group, including who attends the school board meeting. Maybe you could suggest a rotating cycle so that every board member attends at least one meeting. In order to elect officers, you need to use every available avenue to get the word out and you need sufficient time to do it. I would suggest a complete media blitz, email, flyers, a mailed letter to every family, blurb in the church bulletin (if you are a parochial school), posting on the schools website, school newsletter, school marquee, anything you have access to. Let parents know that there will be a meeting on X date and what the topic will be. At that meeting I think you should seek a nominating committee, 2 or 3 parents should do it who will officially nominate any interested parent for office at a second meeting a week or two after the intial meeting. At your second meeting, your nominating committee will officially nominate those parents who have expressed interest, including the 4 parents who are getting the ball rolling. It would be nice if each of the nominees could ahve a few minutes to introduce themselves and maybe give a little info on what their platform would be for the group. Another media blitz to let parents know who the nominees are and when voting will take place, which could be a week or two following the nominations.

Community Advice

Shannonaleab writes:
Thank you so much for your input. Since this email we actually had twomore join our group to make up the bylaws and one of the ones with two family memebers on the school board drop out. We thought we would have co-chairs for the president for the first year. Is that a good idea. I was thinking I would be one of the presidents and that way we could make sure that the PTO got off on the right foot, and direction we as a group would like to see it go. The rest of the group would make up an advisory commttee for the new PTO board. What do you think?

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