PTA Membership: What does it mean to be a member?
· Membership is open to anyone who believes in the Mission and Purposes of National Parent Teacher Association. Individual members may belong to any number of PTAs and pay dues in each. Every person who joins a local PTA automatically becomes a member of both the state and National PTAs.
PTA Vision: What the future will look like if PTA accomplishes its mission.
PTA Mission: The overall purpose of PTA.
· The overall purpose of PTA is to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children.
PTA Values: What PTA stands for.
· Collaboration: We work in partnership with a wide array of individuals and organizations to accomplish our agreed-upon goals.
· Commitment: We are dedicated to promoting children’s health, well-being, and educational success through strong parent, family, and community involvement.
· Accountability: We acknowledge our obligations. We deliver on our promises.
· Respect: We value our colleagues and ourselves. We expect the same high quality of effort and thought from ourselves as we do from others.
· Inclusivity: We invite the stranger and welcome the newcomer. We value and seek input from as wide a spectrum of viewpoints and experiences as possible.
· Integrity: We act consistently with our beliefs. When we err, we acknowledge the mistake and seek to make amends.
THE PTA DIFFERENCE
Given the longevity and universal name recognition of our organization, it’s easy to understand how “PTA” is commonly used to describe all parent groups, whether or not they are actually affiliated with PTA. Parents, teachers, and even administrators frequently are confused or even unaware of the differences between PTA and other parent organizations. So what truly differentiates PTA from all other parent groups?
Defining the Difference
· PTA is the nation’s original parent group in schools. We are the nation’s premier resource for parent involvement.
· PTA is a national, grassroots, not-for-profit organization; neither the organization nor its leaders make any profit or receive any financial benefit from PTA activities.
· PTA is composed of over 5 million members in 23,000 local units. These units are supported by a national and state system that provides them with information, resources, and training.
· PTA is run by volunteers and led by volunteers, and we are accountable to our members, parents, and schools.
· Members receive the information and training they need to advocate effectively at the local, state, and national levels for funding, programs, and services for their schools.
· PTA is an inclusive organization that is open to all those who care about children and schools. Each of the 23,000 local units selects the programs and activities that it will undertake to address the needs of its local school and children. While the PTA national organization creates many successful programs for local units to use, there are no PTA-mandated programs.
·State PTAs and the PTA national organization provide support to help local PTAs succeed.
· As a PTA chartered by Wisconsin PTA, you will automatically receive a federal tax exemption as a 501(c)3 non profit. There is no fee as there is for groups that apply for exemption on an individual basis.
· Members receive special discounts and promotional offers from PTA National Member Benefits Providers.
BENEFITS OF THE WISCONSIN PTA
Your PTA will have the opportunity to enhance their leadership skills.
· Each fall the Wisconsin PTA also offers leadership training that will provide your board members with the skills and knowledge that is essential to being an affective and successful parent group.
· Networking and leadership/personal development occurs at the annual convention in the spring of each year. This is also where all of the Wisconsin delegates conduct the business of the organization.
· Further enhance your Leadership with Wisconsin PTA LEADers Program. An ongoing 3 step program designed to help volunteers lead, be effective and efficient, advocate, and develop programs.
· Your PTA will receive ongoing and regular communications and resources.
· Three (3) times a year the Wisconsin PTA mails out materials to be used by the individual PTAs such as: membership cards, leader handbooks, award applications, etc. Extra mailings are sent as needed.
·The Parent Teacher newsletter is e-mailed directly to all who subscribe and unit officers to share with your members six (6) times a year. Previous editions can also be viewed on our website: www.wisconsinpta.org The Wisconsin PTA website is regularly updated with pertinent information that is relevant to the Wisconsin PTAs. Information regarding PTA programs/events, contact information, online registrations, legislative information, PTA shop, to name a few, can all be found there. There is a special Members Only section that is full of resources pertinent to everything your unit needs.
· Units can checkout free of charge various programs and resources.
· Important legislative activities, deadline reminders and additional information are sent out in email alerts.
· Most importantly, you will get support!
· The Wisconsin PTA is made up of 20 volunteer board members from all over Wisconsin. Any one of these board members is there to assist you when needed. We are only a phone call or e-mail away!
· A PTA office in Madison staffed during most normal business hours to assist you with questions and inquires.
· A committed group willing to take on our state government regards the issues that affect our children. Our combined PTAs throughout Wisconsin have one very powerful voice!
SHOULD WE BECOME A PTA OR PTSA?
Beyond the fact that a PTSA identifies itself as including students in their membership, there is no difference between the two. PTSA’s are most often found at the middle, intermediate, and high school levels. The greatest benefit of becoming a PTSA is that it will give your unit a greater insight as to the wants and needs of the students themselves. Additionally, your student members can serve in appointed or elected leadership roles on your boards, chair committees, and attend leadership trainings plus the annual convention.
HOW TO FORM A PTA
The consideration to become a PTA is an excellent choice. There are over 200 PTA’s in Wisconsin that work together to benefit children all over the state as well as in their own schools.
Here are the steps needed to become a PTA:
1. Get a group of parents & teachers together and vote to become a PTA.
2. Notify the Wisconsin State PTA office @ (608) 244-1455 and we will send you a start up packet that will contain everything you need for steps 3-5.
3. Review the Election Procedure and elect officers for your PTA. Fill out your officer list in Memberhub.
4. Fill in and submit the information from the rest of the startup packet and form a committee to create/submit your bylaws. You will need to hold a meeting to approve your bylaws before they are sent in. 5. Begin a membership drive. You can find ideas on the www.wisconsinpta.org website. PTA Membership dues are $5.25/member per year. $3.00 per member stays at the state level to finance projects and programs to benefit local units. $2.25 per member goes on to the national level to finance projects and programs on behalf of all children and youth.
· Set goals and keep doing all the great things you have been doing.
· Start using the resources that are available to you - help is just a click or phone call away. Contact Wisconsin PTA with any questions you may have!