PTO Today Q&A

Question: Who Should Decide How Funds Are Spent?

I am the president of our school's parent association. I've only been in the position for a year and a half. It's been a very rocky relationship with the school I've been trying to fix. Last year the school decided we would no longer have access to Box Tops money but wanted us to continue to do all of the work (which we did). We have an Arts and Enrichment budget that we use to help supplement things the school cannot provide (ie author visits, assemblies, etc). I received a very disturbing email from the school principal letting me know that she would like to sit down with me and talk about the fact that the school no longer wants us to use our budget to provide these things and wants to tell me how the money should be spent. I know that Arts and Enrichment are lacking in the school and being separate from the school (which we are reminded of all the time) I don't feel the school should decide how the money is spent. We, as parents, have always brought items to meetings to be voted on by the parents who work hard to fund raise all year long but I'm torn about how to react to the email I received. I've let her know that I will sit down with her next week after we've met as a board but I would like to know if anyone else has run in to this issue before.


Asked by frcspie

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Answers:

Community Advice

gjcoram writes:
You should go to the meeting with an open mind: why is it that the principal wants to reallocate the money? Does the principal not support arts & enrichment? Is she feeling budget pressure and can't buy textbooks or other supplies, or needs to upgrade technology?

That said, the principal also needs to understand that you're not paid professional fundraisers: the parents do all the work of volunteering because they believe in the goals of the group and the activities they support. She can take your money this year, but next year, there won't be as many parents helping and thus not as much money.


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