Carrie Palsson, Chair

Tracie Potts, Vice Chair

Works to grow membership and encourage engagement by all families ans staff




It's Time to Get Detail-Oriented!

You've been thinking about membership all summer.  You've got your team assembled, you've got your posters, you've got your prizes.  Now it's time to put it all together.  You only have a few chances to meet your prospective family members in person when they are excited about the upcoming school year, so plan to take full advantage of these chances and get ready to reap the benefits of face-to-face recruitment.

Here are important things to keep in mind as you plan your membership drive.

  • Can you create a pre-registration process?  Can your principal or communication chair send out info about joining and have people register before school even starts?  Can they register online (google form) and then pay in person at an event?  Sell it as a way to avoid the lines!  
  • Where will you place your table for most impact?  Remember that people don't want to talk to you when they enter the building for open house.  They want to go straight to the teachers!  How can you optimize your chances of being seen as they exit the building?  Do people typical exit out of a different door than they enter through? Set up there!
  • Speaking of tables, do you have a table reserved?  Talk to your building services staff before the event to make sure they have what you need! Your building services staff are your PTA's best friends.  Open communication with them is key.
  • If you offer online registration, can you borrow a few Chromebooks from the school so you can have people register directly into your database and skip the bad handwriting?  If you use this option, I recommend having chairs for people to sit in and middle school or high school students who act as technology gurus to help people navigate on the Chromebooks.  Do you need to send out a volunteer request to get helpers?
  • If using paper forms, consider having clipboards and pens available.  Give people the form on a clipboard so they can step aside to complete their registration. 
  • Talk to your treasurer about getting a card reader.  Square and Paypal will both give you free ones if you have an account.  Catch the people who never carry cash and probably won't join later.
  • Let shy volunteers handle the paperwork.  Board members should be in front of the table, talking to everyone who walks by.  Have a brief meeting with board members before the event and remind them of the importance of a personal invite and a friendly, warm attitude.
  • Do you have some creative ways to attract people to the table?  Remember, if you can get the kids over and are friendly with them, the parents will follow!  I've mentioned using a prize wheel in previous e-mails.  If you don't have one of those, a colorful basket of school supplies that you raffle off to members might also be attractive.  I just saw a mini-plinko game on Amazon that also looks super fun (found it HERE.)

I hope you find this information helpful!  Feel free to ask if you need any further ideas!

Carrie Palsson
MCCPTA Membership Chair