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Our Organization Had It's First "Election"

7 years 6 months ago #165803 by January
Last night our organization had it's first "election." We are a five member board & we had six parties interested this year. Our election consisted of me only running against one other party for each position.
I am currently the VP & was given advice by a board member who will be leaving the school next year to slot my name in for everything & I now think I just split my votes. People could have voted for me on more than one slot but, most were not aware of this.
I was told if I had just run for Secretary I would likely have stayed on. Our current secretary has been on for four years, does not take minutes, gave no speech & really does not do much that I can see.
I was hoping to stay on in a leadership role because many of my ideas regarding parent involvement were shot down this last year. These ideas stemmed from complaints "our community" has. An example is we offer door prizes/raffles to boost attendance but, board members are allowed to participate. We had some tickets to a baseball game that were won by a board member so, we did another raffle & they were won by another member! This makes no sense! We are supposed to be there anyway! When I suggested to the President that this be changed I received no response. We have also been described as cliquish & no one seems to care.
Our current President is leaving & she is not at all good at delegating so I hoped if I kept trying this upcoming year this would change.
It was obvious last night that it was the same parents voting for the same people they know. I try to reach out to newer parents & families that are not part of "the group" to try to change that. Unfortunately, these families do not attend as much.
I think what really hurt was that we all gave speeches last night & everyone applauded at the end. But, when the mom who was running for treasurer this year stated she was an accountant the current President & Treasurer clapped in the middle of her speech. I think this is highly inappropriate.
I know the Parent Organization is not the school but, I have been so highly involved the last two years it's hard. I am a shy person by nature so, this was not about power or glory but trying to make a difference.
I used up a lot of my VT time from work. It now seems so pointless. We are a small school & I am struggling with not letting this negatively impact my feelings.
7 years 6 months ago #165807 by Rose H
Hi January,
Thanks for sharing your story and it's obvious you are a very caring person who wants very much to help your school. The sting of losing an election is very real and it understandable that you feel hurt. Give yourself a little time away from all of this and then revisit how you might be able to help out next year. All of the work you've already done matters -- none of it is a waste -- and perhaps you can find other ways to build on it by volunteering, or running a committee. I understand those aren't leadership positions, but you can still be making a difference and if you are up for it next year, run again.

Don't give up!
Rose C.
7 years 4 months ago #165950 by MKDeb
Ask to look at the group's bylaws. There should be something in there about how long one person can hold an office. Ours is 2 years. If you bring this up to the group at large and the Principal you should be able to get something changed! I would! Having said that, I too am a shy person by nature, however I am the President of our PTO this year and would love to have more people like you! We actually have all our positions filled as well as the committee chair positions and school starts Aug 7 here. If you still can't get in this year, be sure to bring it up in your speech next year for a position at the elections. They can't ignore you then! Best of Luck!
7 years 4 months ago #165997 by FoxMom
You can always put your efforts into the classroom this year- sounds like you want to be there for your child(ren) and help them have a wonderful experience-- if not on the board why not the classroom.

And then next year - try and run again for a position. I would pick one that you really want to be and run for that. In the meantime, go to meeting and show your support, even chair an event... even though it might be hard because you really wanted to be on the board, by being involved you are still a part and as you know from being on the board before - volunteers make all the difference. Good luck on having a wonderful year!
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