Getting to Know Your PTO

Many people have an idea of what the PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) at Congress Park is and what activities and fundraisers are supported by the PTO, but there is much more to it than raising money and hosting events. Here are some questions and answers that hopefully give you a better sense of what the PTO does throughout the year.

Who makes up the PTO?

We all do! All parents and staff members make up the membership of the PTO here at Congress Park.

What is the Executive Board and what do they do?

According to the CPPTO bylaws, there are currently have seven board seats.

  • The President (Catherine Rodriguez)
  • VP of Events (Gail Housman)
  • VP of Communications (Alan Miller)
  • Treasurer (Julie Narimatsu)
  • Secretary (Chris Witte)
  • Fundraising Coordinator (Taline Nikolopoulos)
  • Volunteer Coordinator (Rachel Nava)
  • Principal (Mrs. JimĂ©nez)

You can view the bylaws for specifics, but in general the board functions to act as administrators. The PTO must submit a budget to the District every year and works to oversee the fundraising, events, activities and donations that support the school and the district. The finances of the PTO are a big responsibility and it is something the Board takes very seriously. It takes a lot of discipline to be frugal and to decide how best to allocate the funds. In the past the PTO has worked to allocate as much as possible back to our students and the school, but there is always room for improvement. The more the PTO raises, the more can be allocated back to the school.

Who can attend a PTO meeting?

All members are encouraged to attend. This year, the PTO Executive Board chose to hold meetings monthly. This may change year to year based on the board members who hold board positions and the needs of the CP community. The PTO Executive Board also meets regularly to address any administrative issues.

What do you discuss at the general meetings?

Each Executive Board member, including the principal, gives a report to address what has happened since the last meeting and to share information about topics relevant to the school and the PTO membership (i.e. the treasurer always provides a financial report to review the income and expenses since the last meeting).

How can you support the PTO?

The PTO has many opportunities for members to help out. Always check the website and newsletters for specific volunteers needs and sign up as early as possible to help the chairpersons with scheduling. Here are a few more ways to help:

Donations: The PTO is always working hard to solicit donations and it takes a lot of time and effort. The more people who can reach out to community businesses, the more the PTO can offer at events such as the Parents Night Out and Sock Hop. The PTO also takes donations for supplies for the pancake breakfast and fun fair. This is something that the PTO would like to have volunteers for year round. This type of work is flexible and can be done from home.

Chairperson: Events and fundraisers cannot be held without a chairperson. While the Executive Board has taken these chair positions when necessary or possible, it is critical that volunteers other than Executive Board members coordinate and oversee large events and fundraisers.

We look forward to a great 2017-2018 School Year with you!