Pennington School PTO By-Laws
ARTICLE I: Name
The name of this organization is the Pennington School Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO). It shall also be known as the Pennington PTO, the PTO and/or the Organization as referenced in these bylaws.
ARTICLE II: Articles of Organization
The PTO exists as an unincorporated organization of its members. Its “Articles of Organization” comprise these Bylaws, as from time to time amended. The Pennington PTO is established exclusively for charitable and educational purposes, including, for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future Federal tax code.
ARTICLE III: Purpose
The purpose of this organization is to promote academic and social enrichment of Pennington students by strengthening the relationship between home, school, and community.
The purpose is promoted through educational programs, events, and activities, which instill the Pennington philosophy of “Born to Win, Enter to Learn, Exit to Achieve,” for students, parents, teachers, and those with an interest in the Pennington School community.
ARTICLE IV: Policies
The following are the basic policies of the organization:
1. The objectives of this organization shall be promoted through an educational program directed toward parents, teachers and the community. This shall be developed through conferences, committees and projects.
2. This organization may cooperate with other organizations and agencies active in child welfare, provided its representatives make no commitments that bind the group.
3. This organization shall be noncommercial, nonsectarian, and nonpartisan.
4. This organization shall cooperate with the school to support the improvement of education in ways that will not interfere with administration of the school and shall not seek to control their policies.
5. The name of the organization or the names of any members in their official capacities shall not be used in any connection with a commercial concern or with any partisan interest for any purpose not appropriately related to promotion of the purpose of the organization and for any purpose not specifically approved by the organization.
6. The organization or members in their official capacities shall not--directly or indirectly--participate or intervene (in any way, including the publishing or distributing of statements) in any political campaign on behalf of, or in opposition to, any candidate for public office; or devote more than an insubstantial part of its activities to attempting to influence legislation by propaganda or otherwise.
7. No part of the net earnings of the organization shall inure to the benefit of or be distributable to its members, directors, trustees, officers or other private persons except that the organization shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distribution in furtherance of the purposes set forth in Article III hereof.
8. Notwithstanding any other provision of these articles, the organization shall not carry on any activities not permitted to be carried on (i) by an organization exempt from Federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or (ii) by an organization, contributions to which are deductible under Section 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code.
ARTICLE V: Membership and Dues
1. All parents and/or legal guardians of students who currently attend Pennington School and all current faculty and staff of Pennington School shall be eligible for membership in the organization.
2. Membership in this PTO shall be made available without regard to religion, race, color, creed or national origin.
3. The organization shall conduct annual enrollment of members but persons may be admitted at any time during the school year.
4. Only members of this PTO who have paid dues for this current membership year shall be eligible to vote in the business meetings of this PTO or to serve in any of its elective or appointive positions.
5. The annual dues shall be all-inclusive for membership in the organization.
6. Each member of this PTO shall pay such annual dues to said organization as may be prescribed by the Executive Committee and shall be payable, without prorating, at any time during the school calendar year (fiscal year) upon registration for membership. The annual dues shall be set at $5 per family.
7. Membership benefits include but are not limited to a copy of the School (student) Directory and opportunities for earning volunteer hours.
8. All memberships received during the fiscal year ending June 30 shall expire the following September 30.
ARTICLE VI: Officers and Election of Officers
1. Each Officer of this PTO shall be a member of this PTO. The privilege of holding office shall be limited to members whose dues are paid in full.
2. The Pennington PTO Officer positions of this organization shall consist of a President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer.
3. Officers shall be elected by ballot in the month of May at a General Membership meeting. However, if there is but one nominee for office, election for that office may be by voice vote. A majority of the votes cast shall constitute an election.
4. Officers, except the Treasurer, shall assume their official duties following the close of the Executive Committee meeting in June. The Treasurer shall assume his/her official duties upon the completion of the financial review process. Officers shall serve for a term of one year or until their successors are elected.
5. A person shall not be eligible to serve more than two consecutive terms in the same office. A person who has served in an office for more than one-half of a full term shall be deemed to have served a full term in such office.
6. If a vacancy occurs in the office of the President, the Vice-President shall ascend to the position. A vacancy occurring in any other position shall be filled within a reasonable amount of time for the unexpired term by a person elected by a majority vote of the remaining Board.
ARTICLE VII: Duties of Officers
1. The duties of each office are as follows:
a. The President shall:
i. coordinate the work of the officers, committees and the organization as a whole in order that the PTO objectives, goals and main purpose be promoted;
ii. be the principal executive officer of the organization and preside at all meetings of the organization;
iii. perform all such duties as may be prescribed in these By-Laws;
iv. be a member ex officio of all committees.
b. The Vice-President shall:
i. act as aid to the President;
ii. perform the duties of the President in the event of the President’s absence;
iii. ascend to the position of President if the office of President becomes vacant.
c. The Secretary shall:
i. record the minutes of all meetings of the organization and shall perform such other duties as may be delegated to him/her. The minutes should be available for review at the next regularly scheduled meeting and posted on the website for public review;
ii. prepare and distribute a monthly newsletter highlighting PTO news, events, contributions in support of the Purpose;
iii. have a current copy of the Bylaws;
iv. maintain a current membership list.
d. The Treasurer shall:
i. have custody of all of the PTO funds;
ii. keep a full and accurate account of receipts, expenditures;
iii. make disbursements in accordance with the approved budget or account payable whichever is appropriate and authorized by the Executive Committee;
iv. have all checks or vouchers signed by two officers, preferably the Treasurer and one other Officer;
v. present a statement of account at every Executive and General meeting of the organization;
vi. make a full report at the meeting at which new officers officially assume their duties;
vii. coordinate the examination of the PTO general ledger accounts according to the procedures outlined in Article XII: Finances;
viii. at the beginning of the fiscal year, prepare a draft annual budget for discussion by the Board of Officers, and Executive Committee recommendation.
2. All officers shall perform the duties outlined in these Bylaws and those assigned from time to time. Upon the expiration of the term of office or in case of resignation, each officer shall turn over to the President, without delay, all records, books, and other materials pertaining to the office.
ARTICLE VIII: Board of Officers
1. The Board of Officers shall consist of the President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer and the Principal or his/her designee.
2. The Board of Officers shall:
a. Manage the affairs, activities and operations of the organization.
b. Transact necessary business during the intervals between the meetings of the general membership and such other business as deemed necessary by the membership of these By-Laws.
c. Develop annual goals for the organization, in support of the Purpose for presentation to the Executive Board and General Membership for approval.
d. Create Standing and Special Committees; approve the plans of standing and special committees, and present reports and recommendations at the meetings of the general membership.
e. Coordinate the nomination and election process for the upcoming Board.
f. Ensure a review the Organization’s accounts in accordance with Article XII: Finances, no later than July 31 following the fiscal year end, and prior to the Treasurer filing the annual tax return, Form 990-EZ.
3. The power to form any committee/special committee and appoint their members rests with the PTO and/or the President of his/her designee. It is strongly recommended that this process be a membership cooperative effort.
4. Monthly meetings of the Board of Officers shall be held during the year. The date and times will be decided upon at the discretion of the Board. Notice of all meetings should be announced to all Members at least seven (7) days before the scheduled date. Special meetings may be called by the President or a majority of the Board of Officers. When possible, notice of these meetings should be announced to all regular members of the Organization. Any regular member may attend a meeting of the Board of Officers, but shall not be entitled to vote on matters before the body.
5. A majority of the Board of Officers shall constitute a quorum.
ARTICLE IX: Executive Committee
Only members of the Organization shall be eligible to serve on the Executive Committee.
1. The Executive Committee shall consist of:
a. officers of the Organization;
b. Chairmen of standing committees;
c. School Principal or his/her designee;
d. a faculty representative appointed by the Principal or elected by the faculty;
e. a representative of the school’s Parent Advisory Council (optional).
2. The duties of the Executive Committee shall be:
a. to transact necessary business in the intervals between the Organization’s General Membership meetings and such other business as may be referred to it by the Organization;
b. to create standing and special committees;
c. to approve the Plans of Work of the standing committees;
d. to present a report at the General Membership meetings of the Organization;
e. to approve the proposed budget to be presented to the members of the Organization for adoption;
f. to present to the General Membership for approval, budget amendments over $200.
3. The Teacher Representative will be the liaison and support between the parents and the teachers and staff.
4. The Advisory Council Representative will be the liaison and support between the Advisory Council and the PTO Board.
5. The Chairpersons for all standing committees will oversee all meetings/activities for his/her committee. The Chairperson will also be responsible for keeping its committee members on task and the officers, parents and school well informed.
Regular meetings of the Executive Committee shall be held at least nine times during the school year. The dates and time to be approved by the committee at its first meeting of the year. Five Executive Committee Members present shall constitute a quorum. Special meetings of the Executive Committee may be called by the President or by a majority of the members of the Board, seven days notice being given.
ARTICLE X: Standing and Special Committees
1. The standing committees of this Organization consist of Communications, Event Fundraisers, Family Fun Nights, Family Relations, Membership, Ongoing Fundraisers, Social Events, School Service, Staff Relations/Hospitality, Teacher representative, By-Law Review.
2. The chairperson of each committee is appointed to position and is considered to be a member of the Executive Committee. The chairperson of each committee shall recruit the members for his/her committee. The Chairperson shall report the plans and activities of the committee at all Executive and Regular Meetings.
3. The power to form any committee/special committee rests with the PTO and/or the President or his/her designee. It is strongly recommended that this process be a membership cooperative effort.
4. The President or his/her designee shall be a member ex-officio of all committees.
5. The duties of the Chairpersons for the Standing Committees are as follows:
a. Communications (PTO Newsletter, Webmaster, Public Relations (new);
b. Event Fundraisers (PTO Annual Fundraiser, Basket BINGO (new), Holiday Shop (needs 2 chairs);
c. Family Fun Nights;
d. Family Relations (Uniform Sales, Volunteer Coordinator, Welcome Packets (new));
e. Membership (Membership & Recruitment, Telephone (School/Student) Directory);
f. Ongoing Fundraisers (Labels & Box Tops, Grocery Cards, Market Day);
g. Social Events (Fall Festival, Variety Show, Spring Fling, SummerFest, Spaghetti Dinner);
h. School Service (School Store/Spirit Wear, Beautification, Advisory Council Rep.);
i. Staff Relations/Hospitality (Teacher/Staff Recognition/Appreciation);
j. Teacher Representative;
k. By-Law Review.
(to be revised to match above)
a. PTO Membership: The chairperson shall be responsible for recruiting members of the Organization, collecting dues, and sending out acknowledgement of membership. An annual membership drive will begin at the start of the school year.
b. Student (School) Directory: the chairperson shall be responsible for the publication of the Telephone Directory, including obtaining advertising, and maintaining the database of information.
c. Parent Volunteers: The chairperson shall be responsible for compiling and distributing the parent volunteer sheets at the beginning of the school year and keeping track of the number of hours each family has put toward their required service of 10 hours per child.
d. Fundraising: The chairperson shall be responsible for planning, coordinating, and implementing fundraising projects for the PTO with input from the executive committee.
e. School Beautification: The chairperson will be responsible for investigating and implementing any improvements to the grounds or interior of the school with input from the executive committee.
f. Receipts/Labels/Box Tops: The chairperson will be responsible for signing the school up for the various rewards programs and for collecting, totaling, and claiming the rewards.
g. Business Partnerships: The chairperson shall contact various businesses regarding their involvement in the school by way of donations of items, money or products.
h. Bylaws: The chairperson will be responsible for writing/amending the bylaws of the PTO with input from the Executive Committee.
i. Teacher Recognition: The chairperson will be responsible for projects that boost the morale of the students and teachers by recognizing their accomplishments.
j. Summer Festival: The chairperson will be responsible for planning, organizing, and overseeing activities of the festival with input from the Executive Committee.
k. Web Manager: The chairperson will be responsible for developing, managing, and maintaining the web sites for the PTO with input from the Executive Committee.
l. Uniforms: The chairperson will be responsible for informing parents and staff of uniform policies and changes. This person will also be responsible for overseeing the uniform needs of parents needing financial assistance. The chairperson will also oversee the operation of the uniform swap shop.
ARTICLE XI: Meetings
1. The Executive Meeting shall take place at 6:00pm the 2nd Monday of each month.
2. General Membership Meetings of the Organization shall be held at least four times per year, on the 2nd Monday of the month at 7:00pm at Pennington School. Dates to be determined by the Executive Committee annually each Spring when the school calendar is developed.
3. Additional meetings of the Organization may be called either by vote of the Executive Committee or by petition of the majority of the Members. The time and place of all Special Committee Meetings will be determined by the Executive Committee. If possible, Meeting shall be announced at least seven (7) days prior to the meeting.
4. Ten members present at a properly called General Membership or Special Meeting shall constitute a quorum and shall be entitled to take action on behalf of the Organization.
5. A majority vote of the Members present at any meeting shall be required for any action to be taken by the Organization.
6. Executive Committee Members may not have more than two (2) unexcused absences for Executive Committee Meetings. For an absence to be excused, the Executive Committee Member must have a person present that is capable of representing such committee. If an Executive Committee Member has incurred 2 or more absences he/she will be asked to step down from the Executive Committee.
ARTICLE XII: Finances
1. The President of the PTO is the only officer authorized to enter into contracts or agreements for the purchase of materials or services on behalf of the Organization. The President shall not have the authority to enter into such agreements on behalf of Pennington School or the Prince William County School District, nor should they hold themselves out as having such authority.
2. No loans shall be made by the Organization to its officers or members.
3. At the beginning of each fiscal year, the Treasurer shall coordinate the signing of signature cards for the bank to enable the four current Officers to have signing authority on PTO checks.
4. All checks, drafts, or other orders for payment of money on behalf of the Organization shall be signed by the Treasurer and by one other member of the Board of Officers.
5. The Treasurer shall deposit all funds of the Organization to the credit of the Organization in such banks, trust companies, or other depositories as the Board of Officers may select and shall make such disbursements as authorized by the Board of Officers. All deposits and/or disbursements shall be made within a maximum of thirty (30) days from the receipt of funds and/or orders of payment.
6. The Treasurer shall ensure all transactions, whether deposits or disbursements, have sufficient supporting documentation to validate the Organization’s rights and obligations of the transactions. The Treasurer shall also post each transaction to the appropriate account to enable timely reporting for effective management decisions.
7. The Treasurer shall reconcile the Organization’s cash accounts with the bank at least monthly, as soon as practical, but no later than the 20th of the following month. When the bank statement is received by the PTO, an Officer other than the Treasurer, shall open the bank statement and review the transactions therein for any irregularities. The Officer will then sign with their initial and date on the first page of the bank statement indicating they have reviewed the contents. If any irregularities are found, the Officer will discuss with the Treasurer the issues identified. The Officer will coordinate the delivery of the reviewed bank statement to the Treasurer to enable the timely reconciliation of the account.
8. The Treasurer shall present a financial report at each General Membership Meeting of the Organization and shall prepare a final report at the close of the year.
9. The Board of Officers shall ensure the Organization’s accounts are reviewed annually, no later than the July 31 following fiscal year end. The Board shall designate a Financial Review Committee composed of a combination of outgoing and incoming Officers (excluding the outgoing Treasurer, if applicable), to include at least two but no more than three persons to perform the review. The Financial Review Committee will review the accounts, with the cooperation of the Treasurer, and if satisfied that the accounts are in order, shall sign a statement to the fact at the end of the review.
10. The Treasurer shall prepare and file the annual tax return, Form 990-EZ, for the fiscal year (July 1 to June 30) by the filing deadline, which is 3 ½ months after the fiscal year end or October 15.
ARTICLE XIII: Cash Handling Procedures
The procedures for handling cash monies for an event are as follows:
1. When starting cash funds are needed for an event:
a. The Committee Chair will contact the Treasurer with the request for a reasonable amount of starting cash in the specific increments needed. The form of this request, preferably, is the Cash Request Form, which can be downloaded off the PTO website.
b. The Treasurer will withdraw the requested funds from the bank and meet with the Committee Chair (with the Cash Request Form) and turnover the cash to the Committee Chair, using the Cash Request Form to document the amount given and the amount received, signed off by both the Treasurer and the Committee Chair. The Committee Chair will use a PTO cash box obtained from the school office to safeguard the funds.
2. The Committee Chair will safeguard the cash in the cash box during the event, and will ensure appropriate change is given as necessary, and protect the cash received (to include checks) The Committee Chair will ensure the cashbox is safeguarded at all times during the event.
3. At the end of the event, the Committee Chair and one other person will count the total cash and document the same, in the present increments, on the Cash Request Form, to turn back over to the Treasurer. Both persons will sign the Cash Request Form to attest to the amount of cash being provided back to the Treasurer.
4. The Committee Chair will coordinate with the Treasurer to turn over the cash as soon as is practicable.
a. If the Treasurer is present at the end of the event, the Committee Chair can turn over the cash box at that time.
b. If the Treasurer is not present at the end of the event, and the school office is open, the Committee Chair can place the cash in a sealed envelope, along with the signed Cash Request Form, and place the envelope in the PTO box, Treasurer folder. The Committee Chair will contact the Treasurer to inform that the envelope is waiting Treasurer pickup. The Committee Chair can return the empty cash box to the school office, PTO area.
c. If the Treasurer is not present at the end of the event, and the school office is not open, the Committee Chair will keep the cash and appropriately safeguard the same, until such time that the Committee Chair can do i. or ii. above, which the Committee Chair shall attempt to do as soon as possible.
ARTICLE XIV: PTO Expense Reimbursement Procedures
The procedures for PTO related expense reimbursements are as follows:
1. When a Committee Chair (or a member of the committee) or other persons conducting business on behalf of the PTO uses personal funds to obtain PTO-related goods or services:
a. The Committee Chair should ensure that the purchase is within the scope of the budget for that line item, and that the purchase supports the intent and needs of the event.
b. The person needing reimbursement should complete the PTO Expense Reimbursement Form, which can be downloaded from the PTO website, and submit the form along with the supporting receipts to the Treasurer as soon as practicable after the expense is incurred.
i. The person can provide a soft copy of all necessary documents, including the form, via email to the Treasurer, or
ii. The person can provide a hardcopy of all necessary documents, and place in the PTO Box, Treasurer folder, and contact the Treasurer to inform that the documents are available for pickup.
c. The Treasurer will validate the supporting documents and form and will process the reimbursement as soon as practicable, generally not later than the next monthly PTO meeting. Alternative arrangements can be made for reimbursements needing faster turn round.
d. PTO expenses requiring reimbursement shall be submitted to the Treasurer within 60 days of the close of the event or by the end of the fiscal year, whichever is sooner. If the submission does not meet the submission deadline, the expense will not be reimbursed without a waiver from the President.
ARTICLE XV: Dissolution
Upon dissolution of this Organization, any residual funds shall be distributed to Pennington School.
ARTICLE XVI: Amendments
Proposed amendments to the Bylaws shall be distributed to all members prior to a scheduled meeting. They shall be voted on at the next scheduled meeting. A majority vote of the members present at the meeting is required to amend the Bylaws.
Bylaws shall be reviewed by the Board of Officers at the end of each school year and amended as necessary.