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Merging our PTA & PTO into one organization

4 years 9 months ago #173170 by Stephanie Potter
Replied by Stephanie Potter on topic Re:Merging our PTA & PTO into one organization
Hi! This is exactly what we are trying to do. Do you have bylaws we could see and use it as we draft our own.
If so, do you mind sharing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.?

Any suggestions to someone just getting this started?
Thanks so much in advance!
12 years 2 months ago #160435 by KDHuber
I am in California and we had a similar situation at my school a few years ago. The school had two parent groups, a Booster and PTA but very low parent involvement outside of the classrooms and the same 6-8 parents at both a school of 1500+ students and over 900 families!! We decided to find a way to merge but after much investigation, the easiest route for us was to dissolve the Booster and merge its officers into the PTA. There has been some discontent with the fundraising and the "red tape" involved in being a PTA versus a Booster, but those rules/regs. really have helped ensure we stay within IRS guidelines, which is even more important as the Booster is still dealing with the IRS two years after its dissolution due to poor record keeping!!
The confusion amongst the community of having two organizations will create havoc over time. No one has a clear idea of which group is doing what or why. Merging to one group is much, much better. Even being a PTA, we do fundraising of close to $200000 per year for the school and still pull off all the family fun events. If you are basically running two groups with the same volunteers anyhow, there is no point in maintaining all the extra records and paperwork not to mention the dual meetings! Don't kill the volunteers...simplify!
12 years 2 months ago #160425 by susanpim
Hi Jennifer - are you in California? If so I'd really like to chat more about your process. Any tips or tricks? Filings with Secretary of State?
12 years 2 months ago #160420 by Jennifer W.
Replied by Jennifer W. on topic Re:Merging our PTA & PTO into one organization
We did it last year. We raise about $300-350K per year. We dissolved out PTA and drafted new bylaws and changed the name of the Foundation to reflect is broader mission. It has worked great and we are very happy that we did it!
12 years 3 months ago #160318 by mum24kids
I haven't done what you are thinking about doing. But, I can definitely see where it would seem to make sense for you, especially given how your fundraising is split up. I think there are other PTOs on here that pay salaries as well as do the assemblies, reading programs, etc. all within their single organization.

If you're incorporated, whatever state office handles corporations in your state could guide you in terms of how to change the name. Generally speaking, I don't think it's hard, but there's some paperwork and fees involved. In my state, you would have to file an amendment to the articles of incorporation. Another way of doing it would be to keep your corporate name as it, but file a "DBA" (doing business as) name, which would be the name everyone knows you as. There's a fee associated with both types of changes, though. If you're not a corporation, you're probably an "unincorporated association," and are a little less likely to have to file anything with the state. There's usually a box on your tax return to let the IRS know you have changed your name; you check the box and attach documentation to your return. As long as you are not changing the type of structure (i.e. corporation vs. unincorporated association), it shouldn't be a problem for the IRS.

But, you have to look at the purpose of your organization as originally filed with the IRS and see if that purpose still fits with what the organization will be doing after the merge. You will need to notify the IRS if your mission is significantly different and it may have an impact on your exemption status. As Rose suggested, probably worth a phone call to the IRS.
12 years 3 months ago #160259 by susanpim
Hi Rose,

Thanks for your comments. I want to clarify the fundraising and see if that changes the position of the admins. The current pto/fendowment fund raises about $120k per year, and 35k of that is a "grant" from our PTA. The other sources of our money are small fundraisers such as book fairs, box tops, etc. and a direct appeal that raises about $80k. On the other hand, our PTA raises about $95k per year from a single fundraiser - the annual walkathon. The pto pays for supplemental staff salaries. The PTA pays for programs and equipment (e.g., assemblies, reading programs, computer equipment).

Again, one of our primary concerns is that our volunteer base is dwindling, even with enrollment increasing. It seems easier to me to have everyone together rather than competing for the same resources.

More thoughts and input appreciated. Thank you.
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