By Emma Barhoumi
Starting this year, North Springs has made a change to one of its’ key parent organizations. Over the last year, a decision was made that the North Springs PTSA (Parent Teacher Student Association) would become a PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) in the 2014-2015 school year.
Annually, North Springs pays the PTSA $5,000, so by switching to a PTO the additional funds would give North Springs more money and flexibility to support existing and new programs.
The decision to leave a PTSA and become a PTO was decided at a April 2014 general membership when board elections were held and the PTSA members casted their vote. PTSA bylaws require 20 members must be present to establish a quorum, and a majority is then required to pass a proposal.
The role of the NSCHS PTO will be exactly the same as the NSCHS PTSA. The PTO supports the parents, teachers, faculty and students of North Springs with similar programs to the PTSA. The PTO has a specific role at North Springs which is to do major fundraising, fund capital projects in areas like technology, and to financially support the special programs like art, music, media center and physical education, among other things.
The cost to join the PTO is the same as it was to join the PTSA last year. Memberships start at $10 per student. In order for students to receive their schedules, students had to show proof of membership in PTO.
There is no requirement by Fulton County Schools to have a PTSA, PTO or any other parent organization, however, North Springs’ charter petition calls for parental involvement through volunteer hours and membership in PTSA, but the actual charter contract does not require an organization.