PTA question

Discussion in 'Community Board' started by SLK1, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. SLK1

    SLK1 DIS Veteran

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    Any PTA's out there have principals that simply do not appreciate your efforts? Ours likes to pretend she is supportive, but we all can see right through the baloney. She even went so far as to come to an end-of-year lunch and announce, "Well I have to get back to work. I have a REAL job". Our school is rated "A" but I honestly think it's more the teachers and their dedication AND the parents who care that make it an A. :sad2:
     
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  3. emer95

    emer95 DIS Veteran

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    I am SHOCKED that the principal said that! WOW!

    We have a PTO (not sure what the difference is between PTO and PTA) and we adore them! The principal, teachers, everyone is so thankful and appreciative of these women who give so selflessly of their time. Most of them also have full time jobs, and do this in their very limited free time because they care so much about our school. I'm the teacher rep on our PTO, and I try very hard to make sure they know how much we appreciate them. Our principal is the most supportive of them. I can't even imagine any reason why a principal would not be anything but grateful!
     
  4. MnMomtoboys

    MnMomtoboys DIS Veteran

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    The only difference between PTO and PTA is the name.

    We went to a private school and our Principal was like that. She was horrible and once came to the teacher appreciation dinner an hour late an drunk. I could go on and on but I won't bore you with the stories. We finally left because of her and then she left with no notice right after that.

    This year we have 1 kid each in high school, middle and elementary. All 3 Principals are wonderful people.
     
  5. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

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    PTA is a registered trademark of PTA, and you have to pay to use it. PTO is just a way of having a parents association without violating the trademark and without having to pay the annual dues.

    My neighbor is a retired high school Principal and he says parent organizations can be a blessing or a curse. Boils down to whether their efforts comply with the schools needs, and sometimes, within the law. :scared1:


    In his case, he hoped they would support new computers in all the classrooms, and new equipment for the science lab and textbooks.
    They didn't.
    They put their fundraising efforts behind lights and bleachers for the football field. For decades, 3 neighboring high schools shared a stadium with lights. Never an issue, other than the PTA parents wanted their kids to have their own stadium. Well, that triggered a HUGE outcry from neighbors, a zoning battle with the county, a court battle to remove a restriction put on the school site when it was built that it never have a stadium let alone a stadium with lights. He officially was neutral, but spent the next 3 years having to go to neighborhood meetings, planning commission meetings, county board of supervisor meetings, and court hearings......to go on the record saying the school had no position, even though he personally felt there were better things to spend the money on.
    3 years later, the PTA group won, the bleachers put in, the lights put up, and the kids still didn't have their computers, science equipment or textbooks.
     
  6. diznygirl

    diznygirl <font color=701e72>I have a symmetry thing<br><fon

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    Do you live here? I swear all our principal cares about is her resume.
     
  7. low-key

    low-key DIS Veteran

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    here is my first and lasting opinion of the PTA

    Harper Vally PTA

    I want to tell you all a story 'bout a Harper Valley widowed wife
    Who had a teenage daughter who attended Harper Valley Junior High
    Well her daughter came home one afternoon and didn't even stop to play
    She said, "Mom, I got a note here from the Harper Valley P.T.A."

    The note said, "Mrs. Johnson, you're wearing your dresses way too high
    It's reported you've been drinking and a-runnin' 'round with men and going wild
    And we don't believe you ought to be bringing up your little girl this way"
    It was signed by the secretary, Harper Valley P.T.A.

    Well, it happened that the P.T.A. was gonna meet that very afternoon
    They were sure surprised when Mrs. Johnson wore her mini-skirt into the room
    And as she walked up to the blackboard, I still recall the words she had to say
    She said, "I'd like to address this meeting of the Harper Valley P.T.A."

    Well, there's Bobby Taylor sittin' there and seven times he's asked me for a date
    Mrs. Taylor sure seems to use a lot of ice whenever he's away
    And Mr. Baker, can you tell us why your secretary had to leave this town?
    And shouldn't widow Jones be told to keep her window shades all pulled completely down?

    Well, Mr. Harper couldn't be here 'cause he stayed too long at Kelly's Bar again
    And if you smell Shirley Thompson's breath, you'll find she's had a little nip of gin
    Then you have the nerve to tell me you think that as a mother I'm not fit
    Well, this is just a little Peyton Place and you're all Harper Valley hypocrites

    No I wouldn't put you on because it really did, it happened just this way
    The day my Mama socked it to the Harper Valley P.T.A.
    The
     
  8. disykat

    disykat DIS Veteran

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    That's a horrible way to treat volunteers and a good way to lose the help that the volunteers provide! IMO, in many ways volunteer work is more "real" than work we get paid to do.

    Fortunately, I always felt very supported by principals when I volunteered in the schools.

    Unfortunately, there are people who simply think work is worth nothing if it's unpaid or doesn't get some sort of "reward." I worry when kids ask me "what do I get if I....?" because I think this attitude seems to be getting more prevalent.
     
  9. Cantw8

    Cantw8 DIS Veteran

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    unbelievable...you took my answer:rotfl:
     
  10. DisneyJamieCA

    DisneyJamieCA DIS Veteran

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    Our old principal was that way. It was really hit or miss with her - sometimes she was fully behind us and other times she felt she could dictate to us. We now have a new principal and he's amazing! It's so nice to work with somebody who really wants it to be a team effort.
     
  11. low-key

    low-key DIS Veteran

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    :rotfl:, now is it really unbelievable :woohoo:
     
  12. Cantw8

    Cantw8 DIS Veteran

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    No, it's not:love:
     
  13. The Mystery Machine

    The Mystery Machine Sunrise at my house. :+)

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    Nope never ran across that attitude. :scared:

    All I can say is, the kids need you more than ever with a principal with that type of attitude.:badpc:
     
  14. Mkrop

    Mkrop <font color=coral>I just cant go on demand<br><fon

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    Ours is called a Home and School...does the prinicipal and H&S always see eye to eye...No, but 99% of the time they work as a team, and the two prinicipals that have been there since my kids started going there have been very appreciative of all the hard work the volunteer parents do.
     
  15. aprilgail2

    aprilgail2 Guest

    I would have agreed with the principal- a PTA is supposed to only do things that benefit ALL the children- they can't give to one group and not the other. Putting in those things would only be benefitting the sports kids and I would have been reporting that to council (if it was a pta and not a pto) before they even got started! PTA used to pay for the 5th grade trip but that got squashed because it was not benefitting all the kids, only the 5th graders.
     
  16. taitai

    taitai DIS Veteran

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    Our Principal is amazing and would never ever say anything like that. She hosts a volunteer appreciation event every year for all the parents and sends handwritten thank you notes to the Chairs of all the different PTO sponsored events. It is a symbiotic relationship. We need her and she needs us and everyone appreciates the others efforts.
     
  17. tvguy

    tvguy Question anything the facts don't support.

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    The elementary school by my house got caught in a legal issue when they got fed up with the condition of their school. They got paint donated to paint the entire school, and there were a number of painting contractors willing to volunteer to come in an supervise the parents to paint the entire school in a weekend. But the school districts contract with their staff painters said only those painters could paint the school.
     
  18. Mickey'snewestfan

    Mickey'snewestfan DIS Veteran

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    That's an obnoxious comment, and there's really no excuse for that.

    Having said that, as a teacher/administrator, I have mixed feelings about the PTA at most schools where I've worked. Sometimes, I've seen them do great work, and other times, I've seen them be very divisive elements in a school community, and allocate their funds in ways that are actually harmful.

    To give you some examples: I used to work at a school for children with special needs that started a PTA. The new PTA worked hard for fundraising, and came up with an impressive amount of money. With no input from the teaching staff, they chose to spend it on beautiful glass display cabinets to house the student's artwork. Sounds great, but they put those beautiful cabinets in the one open space in the building. All that glass meant that it was no longer safe to use that space for indoor recess, team building activities, physical therapy etc . . . , because we were constantly worried about a child with coordination issues falling or running into all that glass. A space that had been used day in and day out, was turned to an unused "museum" type space. Meanwhile, as parents donated to the PTA, their donations to the school's (it was a private school) annual fund and capital campaigns fell. Things that we had been hoping to provide with that money had to be eliminated from the budget. Finally, the PTA had, as it often does, a very divisive impact on the parent body. Many parents felt obligated to attend the meeting because those who didn't were judged, but it made it hard to find field trip chaperones or field day volunteers, because parents had already used up so much time off on meetings. Other parents, who chose not to participate in the meetings were isolated and what had been a well knit community began to divide into cliques.

    Is it always that bad? No, I've seen PTAs do good things too, but PTAs can be very mixed bags.

    I will also say that those end of the year "teacher appreciation lunches" drive me nuts. They always come at a time when we're up to our eyeballs with work, and they expect everything to come to a stop so we can eat a few salads and listen to talks about how much we're appreciated. If you really appreciate the work I do, then let me do it. Serve a boxed lunch, if you want, or offer a buffet in the cafeteria that we can go and grab something from, but please don't take our precious work time to expect us to sit at decorated tables and listen to you tell us how important the work we aren't doing is.
     
  19. Mkrop

    Mkrop <font color=coral>I just cant go on demand<br><fon

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    Wow:eek::sad2: I am so glad the two prinicipals I have worked closely with have not felt this way.
     
  20. Mickey'snewestfan

    Mickey'snewestfan DIS Veteran

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    Hopefully because you listen to their concerns rather than imposing your ideas on them, and accusing them of "dictating".
     
  21. DisneyJamieCA

    DisneyJamieCA DIS Veteran

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    We always hold our PTA meetings (one a month) in the evening, so more people can come and we don't interrupt the school day. We also provide dinner & child care. We do everything in our power to make sure those who want to come, can. As for the cliques - I've heard that complaint a lot and I can see how it can be seen that way (and sometimes, it probably is true), but it's not fair to expect a small group of people who work together day in and day out, not to be come close. Some of my best friends are moms I've met through PTA because we spend so much time together. It doesn't mean we won't welcome somebody in, though.

    Our staff appreciation luncheon is exactly as you describe - a buffet lunch on a minimum day (11:45 dismissal) in the last month of school. Staff is welcome to grab & go and some do, although most of them stay. And except for setting up, cleaning up & serving if necessary, the PTA volunteers stay out of the luncheon. Two weeks later, the staff does exactly the same for us. It seems to work nicely.
     

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