No matter your age, "joining" anything can be scary! Here are some common myths and fears about joining PTA.
Myth #1. Only moms and teachers need to join the PTA
No way! Sure, moms, teachers and school staff may regularly form the backbone of a PTA, but thankfully, it's not only moms and school professionals who take an interest in our kids! A strong PTA needs the support of moms, dads, grandparents, family members, teachers, school staff, and the community. Bottom line, if you care about kids in our community, you belong with us!
Myth #2. The PTA is only for stay-at-home parents
Our PTA is made up of men and women who have a wide range of daily commitments. Some work 60 hours a week, some work from home. But all of us juggle work, bills, household chores, kids, sports, and homework, just like you! We provide free day care at PTA meetings, for all of our parents without spousal support or with conflicting spousal work schedules.
Myth #3. My PTA membership never expires. I only have to join once
Sorry, PTA memberships are an annual thing, good for one school year. Memberships need to be renewed each year. The good part is that by raising funds every fall during our membership appeal, we can afford to hold fewer fundraisers and bug you less throughout the year! Plus, if you enroll online, your username and password will make it a snap to login and re-enroll next year.
Myth #4. I don’t have the time to join the PTA
At its most basic level, "joining PTA" is about advocacy and providing financial support to the school. Your decision to purchase a PTA membership (and stay current on what is happening with kids in our area) is significant all by itself. It takes only minutes to join, and you will have the satisfaction of knowing that your support helps fund events and opportunities that will benefit our children through the school year.
Myth #5. I will have to take a board position or chair a committee if I join the PTA
No way! Some of our most valued PTA friends have never held an elected (or appointed) position. You do not have to be a leader to be an important part of PTA. We confess that we occasionally get a little overeager when we meet a new member who shows interest in helping out, but we promise we don't force positions on anyone. Your smile, enthusiastic support, opinions and fresh ideas are what we truly need.
Myth #6. I’ll get roped into volunteering if I attend a PTA meeting
There will be lots of opportunities to get involved, but no pressure. Just pass on the sign up sheet if you are unable to participate. No judgment here! We just appreciate the chance to talk with you and get fresh, new ideas, and support!
Myth #7. The PTA has all the help they need
Hahahaha, we wish! It's probably no surprise that the more volunteers Rachel Carson PTA has, the better. More volunteers means less work for each person, which means everyone has more time to enjoy events with their families! Everyone likes to be asked, but please don't wait for an invitation to show us what you have to contribute. We need, and want, your help... whether we know it yet or not! You have gifts and abilities that are entirely yours to give. When you give yourself to the people around you, all of us are richer for it! The first step is to show up and be willing to engage.
Myth #8. My child’s life will be the same whether or not I join
Imagine if everyone felt this way! All of the wonderful activities and support that your child enjoys because of PTA would suddenly vanish! Not to mention the fact that membership puts you in direct communication with other parents and teachers, and shows your child that you are interested and invested in their educational experience. Research has shown that parental involvement within the child’s school increases academic achievements and decreases behavior issues.
Myth #9. The PTA isn't interested in my ideas. They're a group of friends, who do not want anyone else involved and want things their way
Nothing could be further from the truth... really! New friends, and new ideas, are always welcome. It is important to keep our PTA fresh and exciting!
Myth #10. PTA meetings are only for the executive board
Absolutely not. PTA meetings are for everyone. Keep an eye on the Chronicle and this website to find out what Principal Hammond and the A-team will be discussing at meetings, and if it is a topic of interest to you, please join us! Attending one meeting isn't a commitment to come every month. Everyone's availability changes from month to month. But you'll never know what a PTA meeting is really like unless you join us some time,
Bonus Myth #11. I can only join PTA during the Fall Membership Appeal
While that's the only season where we'll be actively encouraging signups (and perhaps rewarding those who do sign up with some cool raffles & prizes... just putting that out there), we welcome new members any time of the school year! Online signup is generally available from August to June.