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Help in Changing from a PTA to a PTO

11 years 11 months ago #138594 by LMSheldon
I'm the PTA Treasurer for our elementary school. We're very interested in becoming a PTO...but...have NO idea where to begin. Can some one tell me what steps we would take to become a PTO? Please include cost factors, as well, if you can.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you.
L. Sheldon
11 years 11 months ago #138603 by Rockne
Hi L --

Good place to start is our PTO v PTA summary page here:

http://www.ptotoday.com/ptovpta.html

And this message board area has tons of past discussions from groups going through the change. If you have more questions, come back or email.

Best,

Tim

PTO Today Founder
11 years 11 months ago #138612 by Michele Biernat
Replied by Michele Biernat on topic Help in Changing from a PTA to a PTO
We are thinking of doing the same thing. However, we are a high school and it looks like PTO focuses on K-8. If we called ourselves a PTO, does that work? (Since it doesn't seem like it applies?) Would we call ourselves a "Parent Teacher Group"? And if a "Parent Teacher Group" would that qualify as a PTO under your insurance that you have posted on this site? (I went to the website of the insurance agency you use and have searched that as well.)
11 years 11 months ago #138615 by Rockne

Michele Biernat;138612 wrote: We are thinking of doing the same thing. However, we are a high school and it looks like PTO focuses on K-8. If we called ourselves a PTO, does that work? (Since it doesn't seem like it applies?) Would we call ourselves a "Parent Teacher Group"? And if a "Parent Teacher Group" would that qualify as a PTO under your insurance that you have posted on this site? (I went to the website of the insurance agency you use and have searched that as well.)


Hi Michele -

You can definitely call yourself a PTO, use this site, and take advantage of the insurance.

Only thing that's strictly K-8 for us is the groups that automatically get our print magazine (all K-8s in US). Other than that, everything is transferable/useable for high schools.

Good luck,

Tim

PTO Today Founder
11 years 10 months ago #139406 by drdeb
All I can tell you is follow your PTA bylaws if you are considering dissolution. You are required to have a PTA representative speak to your membership about the benefits of PTA vs. PTO. Your members have to vote on whether to remain a PTA or change to PTO. You mght be surprised at some of the programs, training and advocacy available through PTA that you didn't take advantage of. I know many people on these boards are very pro-PTO, usually based on the argument that you can keep all of the membership dues for your on school, but there are certainly two sides of the story.

Our PTA president decided to declare the group a PTO (just so she could have a third term in office, I am convinced) -- on her own, and without any announcement to or vote by members, and she has made a huge mess of the situation.

My only advice -- do everything according to the bylaws and with membership input. After all, it is the members' organization and they should be able to make the decisions based on all of the information!
11 years 10 months ago #139416 by Rockne

drdeb;139406 wrote: All I can tell you is follow your PTA bylaws if you are considering dissolution. You are required to have a PTA representative speak to your membership about the benefits of PTA vs. PTO.


That requirement is not universal, though state PTA officials are putting it in in more states each year. Check your bylaws.

That said, if it is in your bylaws -- do remember that the meeting is still yours (your president presides, you set the agenda and the time restraints, etc.). If the session is going great -- wonderful. But if you're not appreciating the input, tone or strategies of the stae folks in the lead-up to the meeting, you have every right to, for example, limit the time set for the presentation.

drdeb;139406 wrote: Your members have to vote on whether to remain a PTA or change to PTO. You mght be surprised at some of the programs, training and advocacy available through PTA that you didn't take advantage of.


Agreed DrDeb. I do think a big reason for so many groups making the change is that they don't take advantage of some combination of PTA offerings. And if they find about those offerings and then decide they'll use all those and it will then be worth the dues $$, then staying PTA makes sense. But the existence of the offerings alone -- if the group isn't taking advantage of them or if the offerings aren't a fit for the goals/challenges of the group isn't really relevant.

I do agree that local membership should have the final say on ending a PTA.

Tim


PTO Today Founder
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