Growing Membership

Leading your PTA begins with relationships.

A strong and engaged membership benefits all kids in your school and throughout your community. Family engagement is linked to higher graduation rates, improved test scores, and teacher retention -- among other important outcomes. When your membership is strong -- your PTA voice is strong too.

Attracting and retaining members is not just the responsibility of the Membership Chair. Your PTA will see an increase in participation if you focus every aspect of your PTA—every officer, board member and committee chair’s responsibilities—on achieving strong, positive, two-way relationships with families, teachers and others in your community.

Things every PTA leader can do to support membership growth for your PTA include the following:

  • Know your personal “why”—why you were attracted to PTA and why you stay engaged as a PTA leader. Share your story widely and often.
  • Listen to and understand the perspectives of families and school staff. What do they want for their children and their school? Focusing your PTA on what matters most to your members will show you care and value their feedback.
  • Value time. Every family has limited time these days. But many are willing to give some of their time to make an important impact for the students and school. Value time by being: organized at events, purposeful with PTA efforts, specific about what is needed from volunteers and thankful for any support received.
  • Pay attention to membership reports. Use every opportunity to make personal connections—at the bus stop, on the bleachers or in your neighborhood—and build the PTA web of membership. Play an active role in implementing your PTA’s membership plan by using the best recruitment tool we have—your voice.
  • Support your Membership Chair in recruitment activities. Challenge the rest of your board to be fully involved as well. If you show you care, others will follow.
  • Share the value of PTA. Toot your own horn. Make sure your members and community know about all of the programs or improvements led by the PTA. Let them know how PTA is working on their behalf at the school district, state and national levels to inform policies that affect their children.
  • Educate yourself about special offers and member benefits provided through PTA National Member Benefits Providers, and your state and local PTA, if applicable.

For more on the PTA approach to building membership, see the Membership section of the Back-to-School Kit.