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What does your PTA spend its money on?

(17 Posts)
TeenAndTween Mon 22-Apr-13 11:32:34

Our PTA raises ~£2500 per year. However we could get more through council grants if only we knew what we wanted to spend the money on.
Due to weak heads / changes in leadership the school has not been good at giving direction / suggestions themselves. We are a single form entry primary in a small town.

We think we should mainly buy capital items, not subsidise trips etc, so money spent is long lasting (and doesn't just encourage parents not to contribute to trips when requested). We do do little spends as requested by teachers, eg wet play toys, leavers presents.

We don't need a play trail (already bought by PTA), electronic whiteboards, or an ICT room. Our library is pretty well stocked.

What does your PTA buy hat we could consider?

turkeyboots Mon 22-Apr-13 11:38:49

Mini bus? That was what we were working towards, but can't afford ongoing insurance and maintenance costs. So money is going to major refurbishment of play ground now and extra lunchtime supervision.

We also pay for visiting experts and experiences like a mini beast zoo man, theater groups, pond skimming and artists to work with the children on specific projects.

41notTrendy Mon 22-Apr-13 11:43:50

Digital cameras. Music equipment. PA system.

mintyneb Mon 22-Apr-13 11:44:09

We've recently bought a camera for each of the classes so that they can capture what they're up to for displays or info back to parents.

We have had pantomime days where a company has come in for a couple of days for workshops; a circus has been in to teach the children various tricks etc. We bought each child a Jubilee gift last year.

They're just the first few things I can think of

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Apr-13 12:06:36

Sod all at the moment. They have £15k in the bank and there is little prospect of any of it being spent this academic year according to the treasurer. Sadly it seems that the head treats the PTA as her own little fiefdom and none of the committee have yet had the nerve to really stand up to her and push stuff through. There are a number of great ideas being put forward at every meeting that get shot down with a very dismissive "No, I don't think so" from the head. Nothing gets spent or signed off without her say so.

Sorry, I ranted a bit blush Things we've bought in the past include the ubiquitous play trail, outdoor play toys for the primary playground, suite of recorders for music lessons, £150 to each teacher for wet play equipment, replacement curtains/rugs/furnishings etc for classrooms, complete new set of phonics reading books & resources for reception, part subsidisation of trips to keep cost to parents at £12 or under, part subsidisation of junior sports team kits, funding of two enrichment days every term eg - skipping workshops, steel drum music workshops, visiting author workshops etc. Ideas that are put forward but which haven't been accepted yet include multiple ipad/tablets per class (it maintenance is proving to be the sticking point), new digital camera for each class, paying for a one off redesign of the school website (it's an utter shambles) and training for a PTA member to maintain and update it.

DeWe Mon 22-Apr-13 12:12:40

Infant school: Lots of outside play equipment, plus maintenance of the outside swimming pool. The swimming pool is entirely PTA maintained.

They give a small figure (~£200-300) for books regularly, which depends whether it goes for library books or more specialised ones in the formrooms.

1-2 outside people coming in per term. like mintyneb says. Usually connected to a topic. Ds's year has a "zoo" with exotic animals coming in today.He's very excited about the boa constrictor they're meant to be bringing.

They subsidise the school trips so none of them cost over £10 per child. Coach costs have gone up so much, it was costing so much to hire the coaches, that the expense was getting ridiculous to go up the road. So they pay for the coach cost, and occasionally a little bit more if there's something particular for the children (eg they bought the beach trip children an ice cream each).

They also pay towards maintenance of the pond. It now has a sign warning of "Deep Water", which makes us laugh as it's probably not deep enough to go over the average reception form's wellies!

PatriciaHolm Mon 22-Apr-13 12:35:34

We've bought lots of outdoor play stuff (climbing wall, teepees, water play), digital cameras, visits from people such as theatre groups/dance groups/authors, lollies for summer fair, mini eggs at Easter.

TeenAndTween Mon 22-Apr-13 12:36:20

Thank you. So, so far we have

Long lasting items:
- books
- music equipment
- PA
- furnishings for classrooms
- ipads/tablets (what are they used for?)
- digital cameras
- wet play
- pond maintenance
- pool maintenance (we haven't got one)

Transitory items:
- enrichment days (visitors coming in to school)
- subsidising trips to a price limit per child

More ideas much appreciated.

Has anyone got a school with any kind of outdoor classroom?
What is it like? Is it well used?

turkeyboots Mon 22-Apr-13 13:14:38

We have a "forest school" in the bushes at the back of the playground. It's very well used if you have the space and keen staff.

We helped pay for plants and carved logs for seats.

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:21:51

We have a massive wooden gazebo type thing that's used as an outdoor classroom - it's a lovely thing and is very popular in the summer, and parents are encouraged to use it as shelter in the winter when waiting for pick up. Something very like [ this]] Think it cost about £16-18k about two years ago. Ours has a seating shelf that runs around the entirety of the inside. We also have three of these sort of storytelling chairs dotted around our field for teachers to use: chairs

Is that the sort of thing you mean?

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:22:12

We've just raised the money for a boot storage facility outside the school. As it's a single form entry school aswell, we've managed to get a space for each child to store their boots.

We're also fund raising to fully refurbish our Victorian hall and get some new gym equipment.

We do have an outdoor classroom, but as ds is only a reception child I'm not entirely sure how much it's used yet. Obviously it hasn't been used all winter. It's lovely though, with beautiful carved wooden seats for the children, a kind of throne like chair at the head of the classroom and a mural along one wall. <totally outs self grin >

The reception lot have an outdoor classroom area too for free flow activities.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:22:57

sparkle That's very much what I meant when I said throne like chair grin

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:22:57

Sorry, can't get the link to parse, but copy and paste it, should work?

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:23:58

Here you go outdoor classroom

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:29:57

Okay, so our reception play area also has some willow tunnels and bowers for small group work and outside play shade. One other thing that springs to mind is that reception also have a set of Muddy Puddles waterproof dungarees which I think were PTA funded but I'm not entirely sure. Also we have a little 20ft by 10ft environmental area with planting beds and a little frog pond that was funded, and about 8 raised wooden framed planting beds dotted around the school for things like sunflower growing, sweet peas etc that they do.

sparkle12mar08 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:31:41

Bugger that classroom link! It's not Japanese themed but you get my meaning!

TeenAndTween Tue 23-Apr-13 13:39:04

Thank yo that's all been really helpul..

I like the look of the wooden gazebo / outdoor classroom and the big chairs. I think something like that could be quite useful for teaching / picnic lunches / quiet area etc, IF it is something the school would use.

Also liked the boot storage and the all in ones for Reception.

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