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New Series By PTAs, for PTAs: 10 Weeks of Back to School

Updated: Aug 30, 2021

Week One: Four Tips for Back-to-School Night

Welcome to a new informational series! Every week, we've been asking PTA leaders about how they achieve their goals - back-to-school night, membership drive, fall fundraisers, communication, and more. We had an overwhelming response - the tips have been flooding in - thank you PTAs that have shared insights!

Every week, we'll present the top tips and tricks. Here's the first installment: Tips and tricks for hosting a fun and informative back-to-school night, and getting new members.

Tip 1: Offer Families Incentives to Join the PTA at Back-to-School Night

Here are a few tips from your fellow PTAs:

✔️ Offer a tangible joining incentive, especially for students like clearance spirit wear to the first 100 students that join.

✔️ Door prize drawings, store gift cards and school T-shirts have worked to encourage parents to join during open house/meet-the-teacher nights.

✔️ We have a spinning wheel with prizes if they join. And they are entered into a raffle for either a bookbag full of school supplies or a movie package.

✔️ We did a PTA membership drawing - Open House week. Any new membership during this time was eligible for a chance to win free school supplies! We already hit our goal for the year ... but we are not stopping there! We may do another drawing in the future.

Tip 2: Make it easy to join then and there

✔️ We had iPads at our table so people could just join and pay right there.

✔️ Create a QR code for your MemberHub store so they can scan with their phones and sign up for PTA. Paperless!

Tip 3: Engage & educate families about the PTA

✔️ Research new families to make them feel welcome.

✔️ Over communicate!! This year, we have notices going home in print, postings planned to our PTA and town Facebook pages, as well as email/newsletter notice planned from teachers, Room Parents, PTA leaders and the main school office.

✔️ Create a QR code that is linked to your MemberHub online store. Print those out on card stock (regular paper will do as well) business card size. Parent and kids love these!

✔️ Avoid putting your membership table next to your volunteer table. You never want to imply that volunteering is a requirement for membership.

✔️ Ask Teachers to promote and ask them to ask their parents to join.

✔️ We provide a list of the activities and events the PTSA sponsors, including awarding scholarships to eligible seniors at the end of the school year; that usually brings us a decent group of senior families to become members.

✔️ Make sure everyone understands that you don't have to be a stay at home parent to volunteer, there is a role for everyone!

✔️ Not just providing PTA info, but also school and district info that you wished you had known is a nice way to show that PTA is truly there to be a bridge and support in more ways than just events and fundraisers.

Tip 4: Everyone loves free stuff!

✔️ Balloons! I learned kids will push their parents to the balloons. We had some wobble balloons and a small snack.

✔️ Ice cream treats with a PTA flyer

✔️ We had a Prize Wheel for the children. While the children spun the wheel, we took the opportunity to talk to the parent. MOST parents provided us their name and emails for volunteering and fundraising!

✔️ Raffles or some kind of thing to give away like popcorn or popsicles helps.

✔️ We would offer mints, cookies, brownie bites, and small bottles of water.

✔️ Create a PTA table with brilliant decor, have available the PTA mission, and perhaps give out essential kits to each member.

✔️ Food trucks this year are greatly anticipated!

MemberHub Resources for these tips:

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