I'm heading off to my first PTA meeting tonight and I'm not quite sure what to expect. I remember my mother being heavily involved in the PTA in Canada, but that's a lifetime ago and another continent, so not that relevant. Any advice or general comments about what to expect? And also, I want to ask here so I don't ask so bluntly at the meeting as this - I'm getting the feeling that the PTA is simply there as a fundraising committee and actually has nothing to do with what actually happens inside the school. Would I be right in that? Or does it differ from school to school?
You're right, it is about fundraising and social events. We sometimes run events, which we know don't make much profit, but that are fun for the kids. We also run very profitable events. The staff (teachers, bursar and headteacher) make suggestions for what to spend our money on and we agree or disagree.
The PTA is not the same as the governing body and doesn't make decisions about how the school is run.
Yes, thanks everyone, as I figured. I'm glad I knew for certain before I went, as I was thinking it would be a bit more about how things are done in the school, as that's how it used to be for me when I was in school (back when dinosaurs roamed the Earth). No problem with it being different, I just was happy to know that beforehand to avoid confusing myself.
It went fine and everyone was quite nice. Certain events will be run by sub-committees, and I've already spotted that a few of those might drag on, so I'm going to try not to get too deeply involved in those ones.
Parent Council - if there is one. Is the one that gets to put forward ideas for school stuff. I am on the one for the DC's school, don't have much power but we are the official liason between the parents and the school.
We do not deal with issues affecting one child, but put forward ideas about perents evening etc.