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Principle woes

15 years 1 month ago #148147 by pzettler
Replied by pzettler on topic RE: Principle woes
Make plans that have a high probability for success! Evaluate the ideas that come forward in your future meetings with this in mind. Openly communicate this in your meetings. The reason you'll state that this is so important is that "Everyone want to be part of a winning team!"
15 years 2 months ago #148128 by New Mexico Mom
Replied by New Mexico Mom on topic RE: Principle woes
The school board said they didn't know that there wasn't a PTO in place. However I got a call this morning requesting me to be at a meeting with the principle and another concerned parent. We have decided meetings with administrators must be attended by more than one parent for back up purposes. Anyway she had completed changed her tune this a.m. Said she would support us and felt that the staff would also support us. Gave us the bylaws of the previous PTO which was last active in 2002. Said we had until March 1st to get board members elected and a budget presented. Nothing like a being under the gun. i feel like she thinks we won't be able to get it together in time, but luckily we have some fairly organized people with no scheduling conflicts. So I guess we just have to wait and see what her next move is. One of the parents was invited to a SAC Commitee meeting this afternoon to pitch our plan with some of the teachers. haven't heard how it went yet. But someone at the school board meeting was listening because I have seen evidence of changes being quietly made at the school, which is encouraging. Wish us luck, we really need it.
15 years 2 months ago #148109 by OregonTreasurer
Replied by OregonTreasurer on topic RE: Principle woes
It sounds as though your best bet may very well be to go above or around your principal and go through the district. NCLB requires schools to implement a parent involvement policy, and districts that receive Title I funds can lose them if they don't. A really good explanation for that is located at NCLB Action Briefs: Parental Involvement . This doesn't guarantee that you can get a PTO started, but it should assist you in stopping the principal from discouraging parents from volunteering.

It isn't always a popular opinion, but in a situation like this it could prove beneficial to consider the PTA route instead of the PTO route, simply because the state and/or national PTA organizations may be able to assist you when you come up against this type of resistance. The national PTA has a page that tells who to contact for information about starting a PTA ( Why Your School Needs a PTA | PTA ). This isn't to say that you can't manage to start a PTO instead, just that if you meet resistance at the district level at solving the problem, they may be in a position to help.

All of that being said, it would definitely be very difficult to run a PTO in a school if the principal absolutely won't cooperate and no one at the district level will make her. You would need the ability to have fundraisers, family nights, etc., and the cooperation of the school to let you spend the money that you raise on things that the kids need. Ideally, your principal's boss would be willing to meet with you and her privately and then with the two of you together to set up a plan of cooperation so that you could function.

Have you tried asking your principal point blank why she is opposed to having parents involved at the school or having a PTO to support the school? Sometimes principals have misconceptions about what a PTO is and what they do that can make them resistant to the concept. If that's the case, clearing those things up could solve a lot of your problem.

What did the board say after they discovered that there wasn't a PTO in place? Were they willing to advise you in any way regarding the principal not allowing it?


15 years 2 months ago #148108 by New Mexico Mom
i have 2 children at the elementary level. We have only been in the area for 2 years and do not know alot of the in's and out's of this school. I was asked last year if I would be interested in volunteering(by a fellow parent) to help watch the play ground at recess. We have a huge bullying problem and not nearly enough staff to keep an eye on everything that goes on. I was also told that some parents were trying to get a PTO started. Since then the principle has made every effort to discourage volunteers and has gone so far as to tell staff that she will never allow a PTO. Our district has recently been rocked by a hazing scandal, also a principle and coach in the district have been accused in a different sexual harrassment type scandal. My feeling is that we need parent volunteers now more than ever, and a am not the only one. We have even approached the school board regarding not being allowed to form a PTO and were told that they had no idea that there was not a PTO in place. The fact that the principle is dead set against us only makes myself and others wonder why she is trying so hard to keep us out. I am the only parent volunteer left as i refuse to be intimidated but am sure she will find a way to have me barred. Any ideas on how to get our foot in the door? I understand that a relationship with this administrator is a must, but I don't think she is going to budge.
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