Back to School Archive

Helpful ideas and tips to get your PTO or PTA in gear for the new school year. See the Back to School resources page for even more tools and programs.

  • A Year of Great Ideas

    Our parent involvement calendar is full of fun ideas and tips for every month of the school year. Use it to help you plan, or follow it event for event!
  • Robert’s Rules: Sticky Situations

    Straight answers to common questions about voting, agendas, and best practices for your meetings.
  • Make Your First Meeting Count

    Use these tips to harness the energy of a new year for your PTO and set a positive tone you can build on all year long.
  • Don't Do It!

    Sometimes it's more important to know what not to do. We outline 12 common mistakes PTOs make and offer positive alternatives.
  • Raise School Spirit and Keep It There!

    Inspiring a sense of pride in the school community can get students more engaged and parents more involved.
  • Video blog: Back2School Program Show and Tell

    Tim talks about the 2010 Back2School Program and explains why parent group leaders should take advantage of this great opportunity to reach out and connect with parents at their schools.
  • My Tip of the Week: Develop a Plan to Welcome New Families

    I've always considered the brand-new families to your school to be your best potential resource for new volunteers. They have no preconceived notions about your group. It's a fresh start. Plus, many of them are excited to get connected. They aren't burned out yet.
  • My Tip of the Week: Impress Your Parents at Back-to-School Time

    Want to make a really good impression next fall? You've got to sign up your PTO or PTA to participate in our back-to-school program.
  • Video Blog: The Importance of a Signature Event

    Wow, the end of school came quickly, didn't it? This time of year is cause for celebration. We hope you do make a point of celebrating all your group accomplished this past year. You deserve it!
  • Plan now for NFL School Program in September

    I like the sounds of this NFL "Back to Football Friday" program for this coming September. The details for your school are here: http://www.nflrush.com/footballfriday
  • My Tip of the Week: Make New Volunteers Feel Welcome

    Fairly soon, your group will be welcoming a whole new crop of parents to your school. Some small percentage of those parents will be excited to get involved with your group. How will you react to those parents?
  • Video Blog: Cracking the Middle School Involvement Nut

    Middle school involvement is different. How is that for stating the obvious? The million dollar question is how do you adapt your parent group approach to parent involvement, when the kids don't want you there in the first place? In this week's video blog Tim talks about how to get past the resistance of kids
  • Video Blog: The Big Back-to-School Night Speech

    Summer is waning and for some PTO or PTA leaders one task is weighing heavy on their mind--  the big back-to-school speech.  So here's our advice: maintain a summer attitude and don't make a bigger deal out of this speech than it needs to be. You probably have two major goals, right?
  • Parent Groups in the News- Weekly Round-up 8/20/10

    It's been awhile since I've done a weekly round-up. Not a lot of news over the summer about parent groups... which is a good thing because parent group leaders need (and deserve) time to re-charge.
  • Video Blog: Advice for New Presidents

    This week's video blog is dedicated to new parent group presidents. Tim has some practical and actionable advice for new leaders about how to start the school year off on the right foot and make it a successful year.
  • My Tip of the Week: Show your Spirit

    I don't often plug specific programs here (and full disclosure: the NFL has been a client and partner of ours here at PTO Today), but I love ideas that add spirit and fun to the school environment, and the NFL's new tradition fills that bill.
  • Tim on TV: Talking About Helping End Childhood Hunger

    Did you see Tim on TV this past Monday talking about the good work of PTOs and PTAs and about Schools Serves' efforts to bring schools together to make a dent in childhood hunger? If you missed it, check out this clip then be sure to sign up to be part of this impactful program.
  • Plan Ahead for PTO Success

    Think beyond your next project with these practical tips for developing new parent group leaders, setting and reaching goals, and anticipating your school community's needs.
  • My Tip of the Week: Take Advantage of the 2010 Back2School Program

    Yes, I know it's still January, but this is actually when we start accepting registrations from groups who want to sign up for our very cool annual Back2School package of know-how for your group and giveaways for your parents. You don't want to miss this one.
  • Video Blog: Leadership Tips for Newly Elected Officers

    Congrats to all the newly-elected parent group officers! Being a new PTO or PTA leader can be overwhelming at first, but no worries - there are lots of resources on our site to help you get on track to become a successful leader, build a strong executive board, and grow involvement under your leadership.