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How do I get parents to attend meetings?

22 years 11 months ago #94427 by pamom
Prescovert- That is the nicest and most positive posting that I have seen concerning parent participation in meetings. I am always the optimist in our group of officers as far as parents wanting to come to meetings but who are we to say what their priorities are. We should all just do what we feel is right for us and stop worrying about everyone else. (other than the children) Keep informing.
22 years 11 months ago #94426 by PresCovert
Replied by PresCovert on topic RE: How do I get parents to attend meetings?
As a new Home & School President this year, I try to get across to the members that the most important thing is to be involved -- don't worry about not being able to attend a meeting. Just make sure that you communicate on a regular basis with your members. Send out monthly minutes to all your members, if possible. Each month, approximately a week before our scheduled meeting, we send out the tentative agenda for the upcoming meeting along with an informational letter. Thank people for participating, even though they may not be able to make meetings.
22 years 11 months ago #94425 by dremal
We are in the same boat. We do continue to have meeting once a month. We have 5-7 parents(same ones) to come ever month. We do one pot luck meeting in October before our carnival and get about 30-40 parents awsome response for us. After that meeting we are back to our normal 5-7 parents. We have also tried incentive awards such as each parent there put their childs name in a hat and we draw a name and that child get $1 to spend at the snack bar. We offer baby sitting which is usually a movie and the principal. Sometime it works sometimes it doesn't. Good Luck!!
22 years 11 months ago #94424 by pamom
We generally try to have a large group of children perform right after the PTO meeting. Usually, the chorus, a Christmas program, the band, or a grade level maybe recite a poem(s) or song(s). That way the parents will attend. Make sure, however, that you have your meeting first (keep it short) - otherwise most of the parents will leave. By doing it this way, we generally have about 75 to 100 parents there. It really depends on how many children are performing.
22 years 11 months ago #94423 by JHB
If you can find a way to make general meetings work for you, that's wonderful and I don't in any way want to discourage you. Lot's of talented people here on the Forum work hard to make those happen. However, if you do find you are fighting an endless battle and want to consider an alternative, here's what we do:

We live in a large suburb, typically with families where all the parents work. Add to that school, homework, soccer, community activities, dance lessons, etc. etc. and we find ourselves with a lot of well-intentioned, but overbooked families. Our school finally decided not to have PTO meetings every month as usually the same handful of people showed up - mostly Board members.

We have a general meeting in Fall to approve the budget and one in May to elect officers. Otherwise, we jsut have a large Executive Board of about 35 people that meets to conduct the PTO business each month. It consists of the typical officers, school reps, and chairs (usually co-chairs) of all the committees. 20-25 people generally show up. We publish a monthly newsletter to stay in touch and anyone is welcome to attend the Board meeting (but they need to let us know in advance if they have something to present). Our parents are involved, fill out volunteer forms, and are pretty willing to help. However, they just don't want to attend another meeting each month.

We sometime have special parent programs, such as "Enhancing Reading Skills", but those are stand-alone-events. I hope to do a survey this Spring to see if the parents want more of those, but otherwise, this system has worked really well for us.

As I said, don't give up on your General Meetings, but this might be a fallback idea for you. Good luck!


22 years 11 months ago #94422 by Glenshire Mom
How do I get parents to attend meetings? was created by Glenshire Mom
We are having trouble getting parents to attend our PTO Meetings. We have held the meetings in the afternoons and evenings in hopes of getting parents to attend. What do you discuss in your meetings? Do you just do PTO business, or do you have guest speakers? If speakers, what topics are they? Please help!! Thank you
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