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.
- 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.
PTA welcomes into membership people representing a diversity of cultures, ethnic backgrounds, and political and religious beliefs. The purposes of the PTA acknowledge the importance of a spiritual life in the development of children and youth. As an association, PTA has the right to offer inspirational messages to open or close its meetings, but such messages by PTA leaders or invited religious leaders should be inspirational rather than sectarian, recognizing that in this pluralistic nation not all members share the same beliefs. Poetry, quotations from great men and women, uplifting anecdotes, and moments of quiet meditation can be used.
Diversity and Inclusion Policy
PTAs everywhere must understand and embrace the uniqueness of all individuals, appreciating that each contributes a diversity of views, experiences, cultural heritage/traditions, skills/abilities, values and preferences. When PTAs respect differences yet acknowledge shared commonalities uniting their communities, and then develop meaningful priorities based upon their knowledge, they genuinely represent their communities. When PTAs represent their communities, they gain strength and effectiveness through increased volunteer and resource support.
The recognition of diversity within organizations is valuing differences and similarities in people through actions and accountability. These differences and similarities include age, ethnicity, language and culture, economic status, educational background, gender, geographic location, marital status, mental ability, national origin, organizational position and tenure, parental status, physical ability, political philosophy, race, religion, sexual orientation, and work experience.
Therefore PTAs at every level must:
- Openly assess beliefs and practices to assure inclusiveness and guard against discrimination;
- Make every effort to create a PTA board and membership that is inclusive and reflective of its community;
- Encourage that all PTA activities at the school be planned by a committee which is representative of the population.
Read the full Diversity and Inclusion Policy.
Types of PTAs
PTA at the local level is linked to the state PTA and the national PTA organization, forming a nationwide network of members working on behalf of all children and youth.
Because of its connections to the state and national PTAs, the local PTA is a valuable resource to its school community with:
- Access to programs to benefit children, youth, and their families.
- Recognition and size to influence the formulation of laws, policies, and practices—education or legislative.
Early Childhood PTAs
Preschool groups often round up parents from several neighborhoods and various early-childhood programs. They involve child-care providers, grandparents, and others concerned with the education and development of children from birth to age five.
Elementary/Middle School PTAs
PTAs serve as a type of forum where parents, teachers, administrators, and other concerned adults discuss ways to promote quality education, strive to expand the arts, encourage community involvement, and work for a healthy environment and safe neighborhoods.
PTSAs actually provide youth members with the opportunity to make a difference by developing leadership skills, learning about the legislative process, increasing their self-esteem, and contributing to the school. In turn, adult members gain a new perspective for program development, as well as acquire a better understanding of the youth of today.
Special Education PTAs
PTA believes that all children have the right to a quality public education, which allows each child the opportunity to reach his or her fullest potential. Special Education PTAs are designed to help parents advocate for special-needs children.