Ideal for those who don’t want the big responsibilities, specified roles on the PTA mean everything’s not left to a dedicated few. Splitting positions such as chair, treasurer and secretary can be particularly helpful if you’re struggling to find volunteers able to commit enough time to them. Allocating jobs such as stores person and grants officer leaves the committee free to concentrate on big events and moving the PTA forward. Taking on a named role doesn’t necessarily make someone a trustee or committee member, but helps define the scope of what they do. Consult your constitution for details of how the committee should be structured. Positions on offer vary between PTAs, and could include some of these…
The position of vice or co-chair involves working closely with the chair, including running meetings, encouraging volunteer participation, organising events and of course deputising in the absence of the chair.
- Suits team players who are highly organised
May help and deputise for the secretary. In charge of social media, newsletters, emails and keeping the PTA website up to date. If your PTA has an events manager or team, the communications officer will work with them to publicise events, fundraisers and any other PTA initiatives. May also liaise with local media and send press releases.
- Suits confident people with good tech and communication skills
Works closely with the treasurer, and is often responsible for card readers and associated apps, removing excess cash from floats to a safe place during events and guarding money. They may also assist in making sure funds are processed efficiently.
- Suits efficient people who are good with money
Raffles and lotteries officer
An agile PTA role that involves reaching out to local businesses for raffle prizes, sponsorship and services. They will also coordinate selling tickets and distributing prizes. This role can also include some fundraising responsibilities, such as running a school lottery or 100 club.
- Suits outgoing people who are persuasive
The remit of this role is to research and apply for grants, typically for larger scale projects such as replacing play equipment. Working closely with the school and PTA committee to identify funding opportunities, the PTA grants officer applies to grant-giving trusts, local authorities and businesses for significant financial donations. Writing skills are a must, as the officer will have to complete applications and provide feedback.
- Suits people who have fundraising experience or are motivated to learn
Any PTA will have a lot of clobber, from folding tables to miles of bunting, to donations of items for sale at future events. All of this will need managing, quite likely in a large cupboard or shed on the school premises. It makes life easier for everyone if that store is inventoried and well organised.
- Suits planners and tidy people who can work on their own initiative
An essential role, class reps are the communication channel between the PTA and parents of each class. As such, they’re key in securing volunteers for events and enabling the committee to reach out to the school community with immediacy and directness.
- Suits friendly people who are good communicators
Pre-loved uniform coordinator
Second-hand, or pre-loved, uniform is brilliant. It’s affordable for parents, it’s a reliable money-maker for the PTA and it’s environmentally sound. The PTA uniform coordinator role involves requesting and sorting through donations, washing and repairing as necessary, storing, pricing and organising sales. These may take the form of pop-up sales in the playground, uniform stalls at events or even dedicated shops. A great job for someone who can’t make meetings.
- Suits people who are ecologically committed
A dedicated events manager will help ensure good planning and that things run smoothly on the day. In the planning stages, they should work closely with the chair to complete risk assessments, organise bookings and licensing, plan infrastructure (power, lighting, layout etc), and all the details of a successful event. The PTA events manager is also the point of contact for all the volunteers and external parties involved in an event.
- Suits practical people who are good multitaskers
From summer fairs to autumn discos, PTA events often involve feeding people in order to raise funds. The catering and refreshments officer organises PTA-run stalls, coordinates with parent volunteers and works with external vendors, such as pop-up caterers or ice cream vans coming on site.
- Suits people who have catering experience
Bake sales are perennially popular and a great way to reliably top up PTA funds. If they happen frequently, a dedicated PTA bake-sale coordinator can be invaluable. The role involves agreeing dates with the school, getting volunteers on board to bake or staff the stall, and managing the sales hygienically and safely, with an awareness of allergens.
- Suits reliable people who love cake
Putting it into practice
‘This was my first year as chair, and we’ve introduced a lot of changes, including rolling out the Classlist app, reactivating our social media pages and producing a termly newsletter. We felt the best way to deal with the additional workload was to allocate new committee roles. We introduced a ticket ambassador to manage all ticket sales, including those made online, and allocate and distribute tickets. Our social media ambassador deals with all social media platform updates and posts, and our newsletter ambassador collects all the information and compiles each newsletter. Things are now more organised, and it isn’t left to the chair to do all three jobs in one. Our committee has welcomed these changes as they give more people the chance to have a structured role and play to their different strengths.’
Zarifa Dewey, chair, St. Aidan's School Association, St. Aidan's Primary School, Coulsdon, Surrey (220 pupils)
Talented parents can easily slip under the radar, which is why we created our parents’ questionnaire. Ask parents to fill it in and discover their skills, connections and opinions of the PTA. Use it to find out which job roles might suit them, whether they are employed by a company that offers match funding, sponsorship or raffle prizes and what events they would be interested in attending.