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Nice-to-have information As well as the essential paperwork, there are some other pieces of information that will help new members immensely. Cast your mind back to the beginning of your stint on the committee… which bits of information do you wish you’d been given? All the notes you make, however small, will be invaluable for future committee members trying to get to grips with what has been done before and the lessons you’ve learned along the way, such as:  Detailed event information, i.e. where to buy burgers for the summer fair, what you charge and how many you usually sell,

 Ongoing initiatives i.e. recycling   (Yellow Moon, Give As You Live...) and who manages these,

 Templates and letters, including sign-in sheets for school discos

   Risk assessments – it’s much easier to review and amend these each year than start from scratch,

 Knowledge capsules/feedback documents following events (download our knowledge capsule template at,

  prize donors and any sponsors,  

Calendar of activities Provide a calendar of school activities that the PTA usually gets involved with. This gives new members an overview of what they have ahead of them, so that they can plan accordingly. It might include serving refreshments at the Christmas carol concert or giving a talk at the ‘new starters’ evening in the summer term (a great recruiting opportunity!). Note any expiry or renewal dates for things like your annual lottery licence, insurance or when your annual return needs to be  (if applicable). When do you hold committee meetings and your AGM, and how far in advance do you start drumming up support?

Money matters It is best practice to have two  and direct debits, so make sure everyone knows who yours are. An independent annual audit should also be carried out and annual

accounts kept for a minimum of  commitments, such as maintenance  up? How do you deal with takings at the end of an event? How are your expenses organised, and who audits your PTA accounts? How do you control stock for events? How do the  and how do you usually liaise with the school to pay for resources?

Communication In the interests of enlisting as much support for your PTA as possible, communication is key. Whether you’re trying to sell tickets for the   site, you need to employ a variety of communication channels! Find out who in your committee is responsible for these – who updates the notice board, who posts messages on Facebook, and who writes letters to go into bookbags? If you have a section in the school’s monthly newsletter, is there a deadline for providing details for inclusion, and who should this be sent to? If you have a PTA website,

                                Stephanie Boyle, PTA co-chair, Friends of North Waltham School, Basingstoke



or you use social media, who are your administrators and what are the log-in details and passwords? Don’t let communication slip in the transition from one committee to another – appoint a PR manager!

Summary The more information you can provide, the less time and effort new committee members will waste trying to grapple with the basics and the more time and effort they can put into the fun stuff! In an ideal world, your handover pack will be broken down into individual activities, providing the foundations of each event. For example, if someone new takes over running the children’s disco they will want to know:  What timings work best and why?  What food is usually provided,

            

where this is bought and how much it costs,

 Who your DJ is, what they charge and any stipulations/ previous comments about approving playlists,

  (i.e. PRS for Music, TEN),

 Details of teachers/TAs or parent volunteers who usually help,

 Previous risk assessments,  A letter to parents with a food permission slip, booking form, etc. By passing on the knowledge and


 your time on the PTA, you can step  that you are leaving it in good shape. By saving the new team the hassle of doing all the groundwork, they can pick up where you have left off and focus their efforts on reaching new heights of fundraising success – and providing memorable experiences for the children at the school. After all, that’s what we’re here for, isn’t it?









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