Question: Parent acting on Their Own

How and what is the best way to address a parent acting on their own instead of using the right channels through the PTO Board? I have a parent acting on their own and scheduling meetings on some sensative topics without first contacting the PTO Board...*Sigh*

Asked by Anonymous



Community Advice

firefighter464 writes:
Not sure of your details, is this a new naive or long-time active who-should-know-better member? And first off, have you simply tried talking to this person one-on-one? Honest, open communication solves many problems! Be receptive and listen. Examine this: Is your schedule for your regular meetings difficult for this person or others to attend? Who decides the best time for meetings? The Board or membership? If that is any consideration, address it with a note sent home to parents so they can respond without having to make a meeting they already can't attend. How welcoming is your PTO? Is it intimidating to newcomers and or are there any bullies or even inadvertent bullying procedures that are making the 'right channels' difficult to use? For instance, if someone raises an issue does it keep getting tabled? or do you limit debate? In regular meetings, is there ostracizing body language against this member? Is it because of the 'sensitive topics'? That cannot be tolerated at any level. Nip it in the bud if that's the case. Otherwise, what do your bylaws say about meetings and who can schedule them? Is this person in violation? Do you use Robert's Rules? If so, examine them as they tell you exactly how to handle someone who has violated the bylaws. If you strictly go by the parliamentary procedure, and keep emotions and yes, hard as it may be, even *sighs,* out of it, I think that is the best way to handle it. Make a polite phone call to the offending member and carefully explain how they have violated the bylaws of the PTO. Offer to give him/her a copy of the bylaws. Allow for an exchange of ideas. If they act in a way that you expect more of the same, stay calm, ask them to be present at the next regular meeting because their violation will be addressed by the general membership in attendance vote. If the offending member is not present at that meeting tell them the decision of the membership through a courteous letter. Not an expert, just my opinion.

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