Keeping everyone literally on the same page is an essential part of running a healthy PTO. And one father officers most responsible for this task is the PTO Secretary.
This post will cover how to be the best PTO Secretary so you can avoid some of the mistakes and myths surrounding this position!
The Secretary Position is one of nine positions every PTO must have!
First off, Some groups have two secretary positions: Recording secretary and Corresponding Secretary.
Corresponding Secretary Duties
The official title totally gives away the main responsibility of the PTO Corresponding Secretary!
That’s right, the primary thing Corresponding Secretaries do is to write notes and prepare letters related to PTO business!
This role is an easy one that can easily be combined with another role if a volunteer would like to take on more.
It’s also a perfect role for a parent who doesn’t have a whole lot of time, but still wants to be involved.
Corresponding Secretaries don’t necessarily have to attend PTO meetings, although it is helpful.
Recording Secretary Duties
The duties of the PTO Recording Secretary are vastly different from those of the Corresponding Secretary and are much more involved.
The main responsibility of the Recording Secretary is to take and maintain the minutes of the PTO meetings.
Minutes from both the General Membership as well as the Executive Board Meetings should be recorded.
The Recording Secretary role is another role that fits well with a volunteer who is limited in time, but wishes to take on a crucial role!
Recording Secretaries must be able to attend the majority of PTO meetings or find a designated note taking substitute.
Keep detailed notes
Take detailed notes during Exective and General Membership Meetings.
But don’t write a novel!
In fact, your minutes don’t even have to be in full sentences.
No, really! Sentence fragments are just fine.
You’re trying to get the essence of what happened during the meeting.
You are not responsible for transcribing the meeting word for word.
Make sure to capture all motions and votes that occur.
The whole point of the minutes is to capture what was discussed and decided so that someone not attending the meeting can understand what happened.
For most meetings, your notes should be no more than a page or two.
Show up early for meetings
Make sure you’re on time or even a little early for meetings so that you’re ready to go when the meeting is called to order by the President.
One recurring issue some Recording Secretaries have is that they put off typing up the meeting minutes.
Avoid this by typing notes during the meeting on your laptop or tablet or come home and type up your notes.
Have minutes ready within a few days after the meeting.
Your memory will be freshest then and you won’t forget to add any element into the minutes
Get and stay organized
As the Recording Secretary of the group, you’re charged with the safekeeping of your PTO’s history, including meetings of the current year as well as minutes from past years.
Keep a Binder for the Current Year
Keep copies of the minutes organized in a binder.
I have a binder kit for Secretaries that can be downloaded and printed in just a few minutes for an organized set up in no time!
Keep past years’ information safe.
Keep a separate binder for minutes of meeting from previous years.
There’s really no need to have those minutes with you at all times.
If your school has a PTO closet or office, the binder can be kept in there.
Over to you!
Now you have a detailed explanation of what’s involved as Corresponding Secretary or Recording Secretary!
Have any other questions about the role?
Let’s talk in the comments!