||The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (May 2012)|
||It has been suggested that this article be merged with Parent Teacher Organization. (Discuss) Proposed since December 2012.|
A parent-teacher association (PTA) or Parent-Teacher-Student Association (PTSA) is a formal organization composed of parents, teachers and staff that is intended to facilitate parental participation in a school. They occur in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan and may occur in other countries.
PTAs in the United States
In the U.S., most public and private K-8 schools have a PTA, a Parent Teacher Organization or an equivalent local organization. These organizations also occur (though less frequently) at high schools and preschools.
Groups going by the PTA acronym are part of the National Parent Teacher Association (National PTA), a non-profit formerly based in Chicago (now in Alexandria, Virginia) that was founded on February 17, 1897, with membership open to anyone who believes in its mission and purposes. The first meeting was held in Marietta, Georgia by Alice McLellen Birney at Marietta High School. Every person who joins a local PTA automatically becomes a member of both the state and National PTAs. PTA membership — including the number of affiliated units and of individual members — has been declining for several decades. The group boasted more than 12 million members in the late 1960s; today membership is down below 5.2 million.
On June 28, 2009, Chuck Saylors became the 113-year-old group's first male president. According to Saylors, only about 10% of the formerly all-female group's members are men.
Local groups doing similar work but that are unassociated with the state and national structure of the National PTA are often known as Parent Teacher Organizations (PTOs). A number of other acronyms are used as well. In the United States, roughly 25% of parent groups are PTAs, while the remainder are independent. There are 23,000 local organizations recognized by the National PTA in the United States.
PTAs in the United Kingdom
In the United Kingdom Parent Teacher Associations are common, being present in the majority of schools (sometimes called Home School Associations). An NFER study "How are schools involving parents in school life? Annual survey of trends in education 2007" found that 83 per cent of primary schools, and 60 per cent of secondary schools had a "PTA or equivalent". In England, Wales and Northern Ireland PTAs may choose to join PTA-UK which describes itself as "The national charity representing over 13,750 PTAs across England, Wales and Northern Ireland" which seeks "To advance education by encouraging the fullest co-operation between home and school, education authorities, central government and all other interested parties and bodies." Unlike the USA the fact that a body is called a PTA does not, in itself, imply membership of any national organisation. There is a separate, similar body for Scotland. "The Scottish Parent Teacher Council" PTAs are, in general not involved in the Governance of Schools, that is a matter for the school governing bodies, but in practice parents who are active in the PTA will tend to engage in the elections of parent representatives (Parent Governors).
- Google cache search results of Alice McLellan Birney Papers collection information
- "FAQs / PTA Annual Report". National PTA (United States). Retrieved 2009-03-09.
- "PTA Welcomes First Male President". NPR story. Retrieved 2009-06-28.