10 Tips for Getting the New PTA/PTO Board off to a Good Start

The 2014-15 school year is about to wrap up and that means there is a new PTA/PTO bmeetingoard about to take office for the new school year that will be here before you know it. So what will help the new board to hit the ground running?

Here are 10 tips for getting off to a good start.

1) Prepare the new officers for success by making sure they have the information and training they need. No board member wants to be flying blind, good preparation means that a good year will follow.

2) Outgoing Presidents should take plenty of time to answer questions from the incoming President and should offer to be available over the next few months to answer additional questions.

3) Plan for an effective leadership transition. Outgoing leadership should meet with their successors in that office and share the knowledge they have gained over the past year.

4) Outgoing board members can also act as mentors to the new board through the end of the current school year. This will also make the transition easier.

5) Hold an orientation event for the new board in which the outgoing board members each talk about their job and what work and what they might have done differently if they had know then what they know now. This will also help the incoming board to understand the roles of each member of the board.

6) Prepare a binder with important information about the responsibilities of each officer with important contacts, emails and phone numbers. This binder should also include the PTA/PTO Constitution and By-Laws, forms used for sign ups during the year and membership recruitment information.

7) Provide each new board member with a school contact list, including administrators, faculty, and staff, community liaisons, fundraising information and press contacts.

8) Provide a list of activities, dates and time frames from the previous year, service projects, key activities and initiatives information. Provide information on commitments that have already been made and contact information for those commitments. Be sure to include your Penguin Patch agreement, contact information and welcome letter for your new board!

9) Be on the lookout for new leadership. This will give plenty of opportunity to discuss the possibilities early and help them to get used to the idea of becoming a PTA/PTO leader. Incoming officers should begin identifying next year’s leaders almost immediately.

10) Identifying your leadership early means the opportunity to ask for their help on upcoming projects and to see each volunteer in action and learn if they will follow through on their commitments.

*Bonus Tip: The Penguin Patch Holiday Shop is an award winning service project for your parent group. The Penguin Patch teaches everyday math and budgeting skills, allows children to experience the joy of giving, helps students learn the value of a dollar and eases some of the burden of holiday shopping. Ask any of our schools that have hosted a Penguin Patch Holliday Shoppe and they will tell you it was FUN and it was EASY!

A special tip of the hat to PTO Today for providing the inspiration for this blog.