● Tips on good governance, securing support and harnessing volunteers Managing your PTA

Better together

Although a PTA and school are two separate organisations, getting the school involved in the PTA’s work and vice versa is benefi cial to all parties. But where do you start? Here are some ways in which the school and PTA can support each other.

Compile a wish list The money raised by your PTA belongs to your PTA. But you raised it to help the school, and the school staff are best placed to advise on where funds are most needed. Speak to the headteacher and the teaching staff, invite staff to make purchase requests and ask them along to meetings where they can have input into how funds are spent. Visit pta. to read more about making a wish list.

Help with other goals PTAs don’t have to be purely about fundraising, and there are many things you can do to help the school achieve its other objectives. Meet with the headteacher and staff to discuss how you can help them. You

may fi nd you can tick multiple boxes with one event. Goals might include: ● Promoting the curriculum: Tie fundraisers into learning, for example a sponsored walk to promote physical activity or a readathon to encourage literacy. This is a great way to get the teaching staff on your side. ● Engaging with the community: Events that are open to the local community can help to boost the school’s relationship with the local area, which, in turn, raises the profi le of the school and widens your potential donor base. Hold an unusual event such as a colour run for unique appeal, or fi ll gaps in your local area, for example a fi lm screening if you don’t have a cinema, or a quiz night if you lack social amenities. When it comes to community

events, you don’t always have to focus on fundraising: running a lunch for local residents (where you open the school canteen and offer food at a break-even cost) brings people together and generates

excellent PR. The more people in the community know about your cause, the more they are in a position to offer help. ● Engaging hard-to-reach parents: PTAs can help to engage hard-to- reach parents through events that are run to break even rather than for a profi t. The core focus is on creating memories and bringing people together. ● Delivering unique experiences: Creating fun memories is a contribution to the school in itself. The PTA is in a position to offer pupils opportunities they wouldn’t typically have and that the school may not have the time or resources to organise. Visit running-a-pta to read our Money Isn’t Everything feature. ● Helping with school events: Ask staff how the PTA can support school events, such as providing refreshments for sports days or nativities. It could even be something that raises funds for your PTA while giving the school one less element to organise. AUTUMN 2019 15

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