Frequently Asked Questions
What is a PTA?
A PTA unit is a local, self-governing membership association whose main purpose is to promote the health, welfare, safety and education of children and youth in the home, school, community, and place of worship. PTAs traditionally work within a school community, although there are examples of non- school based PTAs working for children in other settings. As the largest volunteer child advocacy association in the nation, Parent Teacher Association (PTA) reminds our country of its obligations to children and provides parents and families with a powerful voice to speak on behalf of every child while providing the best tools for parents to help their children be successful students.
PTA does not act alone. Working in cooperation with many national education, health, safety, and child advocacy groups and federal agencies, National PTA collaborates on projects that benefit children and that bring valuable resources to its members.
Why Join a PTA?
PTA is the only group whose exclusive interest is the health, welfare, safety and education of your children. Children cannot vote and do not participate in the legislative process. Thus, they have no say in creating the policies that affect their lives and well-being. PTA allows you to speak for the interest of your children when you cannot be there yourself. Whether in Washington DC, Bismarck, or in your own city government offices, everywhere decisions are made that affect your children, PTA is speaking on behalf of your children. This has always been and will always be a central focus of PTA.
Perhaps most importantly, though, your membership in PTA has a direct impact on your children and the quality of their school. PTA has the ability, more than any other organization, to make a school a better place for your children to learn. PTAs do this by addressing the needs of their individual schools. By becoming a PTA member, you can help identify those needs and develop solutions that may include making the school safer, becoming more technologically advanced, being more tolerant to others' differences, and bringing enriched educational opportunities to the school.
How Can I Join PTA?
The easiest way to join PTA is by joining a local PTA unit in your community. If your child goes to a school building served by a PTA, join! If your child's school does not have a PTA, encourage other parents to seriously consider affiliation with the North Dakota State PTA.
If you do not have children in school or, simply do not have children, you can still join by becoming a contributor to the North Dakota State PTA.
Why Form a PTA?
If your child’s school has a parent-teacher organization rather than a PTA, you may be wondering what the benefits of becoming a PTA are. These are some of the benefits your organization would receive if it became a PTA:
- PTAs receive materials and information developed for all sorts of programs that can be used to support children, parents, and families.
- PTAs become part of a larger community working with and advocating on behalf of issues affecting the health, welfare, safety, education, care, and protection of children at the local, state, and federal levels.
- PTAs can access a state and nationwide network of parents to get information, materials, and resources to help children, parents, and families in their own communities.
- PTAs become independent, self-governing organizations where all members have voice and vote.
- PTAs can access excellent leadership education and training resources.
- PTAs can access state office staff and a group of knowledgeable people with experience to help you succeed. Whatever your question is, whether it's about fund raising, liability insurance, filling out IRS forms, parliamentary procedure, or developing programs, answers and advice are readily available.
How Do PTAs Help Kids?
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.”
Here are some examples of how individual PTAs from around the state are fulfilling that mission in their own communities:
Providing Enrichment Programs for Children
PTAs offer enrichment opportunities for children, including after school tutoring, foreign language classes, career days, and more. Because each PTA chooses its own enrichment programs based on the needs of their community, there are as many different enrichment opportunities provided by PTAs as there are individual PTAs in this state.
Providing Parenting Classes for Their Community
Many PTAs provide parenting education in conjunction with their meetings, including such topics as parent involvement in education, understanding learning styles, building children's self-esteem, helping your child succeed in school, and youth violence prevention.
Influencing Legislation on Behalf of Children
Some PTAs advocate for local issues that affect the children in their community. In the past, anti-smoking resolution, pursuit of school nursing legislation, graduated driver license coalition,..............???
Making the School a Better Place to Learn
PTAs have purchased and donated computers, playground equipment, and volunteered countless hours in the classroom and in conjunction with programs and activities.
How Can I Form a PTA?
Contact the North Dakota State PTA office by phone at 1-701-297-9168 or email us at northdakotapta(at)gmail(dot)com. NDPTA will have a Board member contact you and take you through the steps needed to form a PTA unit.