Question: PTA to PTO - district level PTO

We are currently a PTA but are considering becoming a PTO. We have a total of 8 schools in our district, each a separate PTA. In an effort save money and time switching to PTO, I'm wondering if we can have one "umbrella" PTO at the district level so that we can form only one 501c3 organization and also have one insurance policy that covers all schools, but each school can still have their own EIN# so that we can keep finances separate. Any ideas? Thanks!

Asked by CPP



Advice from PTO Today

Rockne writes:
Hi CPP -

What your proposing certainly could work. The trick is that you'd be getting into a level of short-term and longer-term complication that's a bit greater than the typical 501c3 process. It's very easy to establish and maintain the 501c3 for one typical PTO. We have step-by-steps on that that have worked for tons of groups/laypeople.

But the umbrella is a differnet application that we don't advise on. I'd recommend a lawyer with some basic non-profit experience for that one. Further, down the road -- each group remains tied to the others for your status. Will you have a system in place for each group to report well? etc. That's more complicated than the average group, too.

I can definitely see the upside but -- unless your groupsa re going to truly collaborate for the long-term -- this may not be the way to go.


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