Handling Money

Collecting funds and disbursing payments must be managed by effective PTA procedures. These procedures protect the PTA, officers and its membership by preventing fraud and ensuring the proper use of funds. Having the right procedures in place also makes it more likely that if a loss occurs, it will be found quickly and covered by insurance less the deductible.

An effective system of financial management procedures includes the following:

  • Put it in writing. Policies and procedures must be put in writing. Train all PTA board members on these processes and ensure they follow these financial procedures consistently. Review policies and procedures annually.
  • Segregate duties. For example:
    • Establish dual administrators for all online accounts whenever possible.
    • Make sure invoices are received by a person who does not have the authority to approve payments.
    • The person who approves payments is not able to sign checks or enter invoices into the accounting system.
    • Make sure all bank statements and bank reconciliations are reviewed each month by someone who does not have access to the bank account or authority to sign checks.
  • Keep an accurate and detailed file. An accurate and detailed account of all monies received and paid out is kept in the Treasurer’s permanent file. A filing system is maintained for proper and complete storage of all financial records. (See Records Retention Schedule.)
  • Deposit immediately. Checks or cash received are logged and immediately deposited to the PTA's bank account. When receiving cash for an event, it is a best practice to have two people count the cash and write up the deposit together.
  • Reconcile monthly. When bank statements are received, the checkbook is reconciled to the bank statement immediately, and a copy of the monthly bank reconciliation should be submitted to the Board and membership along with the monthly financial report.
  • Contact your state PTA with any concerns. Fraud generally involves stolen or misappropriated assets such as cash, property, or equipment. If you believe that fraud has occurred, immediately contact your state PTA.