23 Mar
PTA? No F@#*ing Way.

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I’ve been asked to sit on the PTA board at my daughter’s elementary school. I’m not certifiably insane, so of course I don’t want to, but I don’t want to upset anyone, either. How do I get out of this predicament?

Signed,

PTA Peggy

___________________________

Dear PTA Peggy,

As everyone knows, “PTA” stands for “Parent Teacher Association.” The PTA (or PTO) is a group found at most public schools, and it’s where parents and teachers come together to work for the welfare of the children. More information about it can be found here.

Now, simply joining the PTA is a no-brainer. You pay your dues, you attend a couple of meetings, you hide in a bathroom stall with a cigarette when they start looking for bake sale volunteers—no big whoop. But becoming a member of the PTA board? That’s when we start separating the Type-A wheat from the Slacker Mom chaff. Because serving on the board is when “PTA” can start to stand for “Please, Take Advantage.” (Or maybe I’m just still bitter about losing the Vice President of Carnivals election to that slut Missy Rogers.)

But listen, if you’re not interested in being on the board, just politely decline. You don’t owe them any explanation as to why you don’t want to become an uber volunteer. However, before you say “no,” maybe just listen to what they have to say. Since they’re most likely asking you to be on the board because they think you have something valuable to contribute to the school, it’s at least worth a few minutes of consideration.

And if you still decide not to do it, no harm, no foul. There’s absolutely nothing to feel guilty about. After all, your time is your time and you can do with it whatever you want.

At least that’s what I tell myself when I’m hiding out in a bathroom stall sending nasty text messages to that slut Missy Rogers.

Sincerely,

Wendi, TMH

16 Responses to “PTA? No F@#*ing Way.”

03.23.10#1

Comment by Lady Steele.

I was asked to be on the PTA board at my daughter’s school. The only problem I’ve had is that I work outside the home, while most of the other moms are Stay At Homes. I’ve brought a different perspective to the group, and I’d like to think I have made a difference. And of course, I always have the “can’t be there, I’ve gotta work excuse!”

03.23.10#2

Comment by Christy.

How about “No, thank you.” End of sentence. Full stop. Unless of course you want drama and back stabbing and late nights and…………never mind. Just say “no”. Please!

03.23.10#3

Comment by Heather.

I suggest moving to Abu Dhabi. They’ll never find you there, what with the Abayah dress and all.

03.23.10#4

Comment by Michelle.

I would say no. I would tell them you have too many other obligations and can’t dedicate enough time to that.

Then I would go hide in a bathroom stall with a cigarette. LOL

03.23.10#5

Comment by Karen at French Skinny.

Thanks Miss Wendi. I have one year before the dreaded PTA. I tend to get a little “enthusiastic” about things like this. And just a “smidgen” competitive. I feel myself wanting to take that Slutty Miss Rodgers down like the biatch she is! (Sigh) I feel I must just walk away.

03.23.10#6

Comment by GrandeMocha.

Just say, “No F@#*ing Way.” I’m sure they’ll leave you alone after that!

03.23.10#7

Comment by marathonmom.

yeah, right now they just want my money. But I am a WOHM so there’s no way they’d ask me to be in a leadership position.

03.23.10#8

Comment by Patty.

My mother had a horrible experience with the PTA when I was in school, so I was someone leery about joining when my daughter came of age.

Doubts fully justified, I must say. There was a core group of women who muscled everyone out of the way to stay in charge, and most of their children were already graduating from high school. “Move on” was not a concept they grasped.

More power to you if you can accomplish anything other than the stall-hiding, but I know for a fact that hiding in the stalls is counterproductive. Really!

03.23.10#9

Comment by Jeanne.

I find that adding “it’s a condition of my parole” to the end of the sentence usually cuts short future offers better than anything else I’ve tried. Short, simple, and they won’t argue with it, trust me.

amy Reply:

Shit. I could have used that one YEARS ago! Priceless my dear.

03.23.10#10

Comment by Chelswatts.

Ahhhh… NOW I know where you’ve been hiding every Friday morning when I meet with the principal and presidents. Good thing you covered the NF today, you’re on my good side, but I’ll be checking the bathrooms for tell-tale smoke in the future

03.23.10#11

Comment by amy.

I have had a child in some sort of ‘school’ situation for the past 18 years.

Politely say no thank you. And count your freaking blessings!

This ‘hard to say no’ work at home and part time out of the home mom was not so smart. Luckily I learned early about self preservation in the school system.

The PTA is called the PAC where I live. Parent Advisory Committee they like to refer it to. I like to call it a PAC of type A parents (usually mothers) who like to run the show. Fine. My understanding was you would go to the meetings to be kept abreast of what the school was up to. Volunteer for certain events.. be a good mom.

So wrong. It is a PAC of women trying to outdo each other in how many hours they contribute to the school, while constantly wiping their brow and commenting on how awful and negligent all OTHER parents are. It is a PAC of parents who guiltily make you feel inferior because you are NOT willing to spend the 6 hours your kids are in school working for the school.

Ahem. No bitterness. None at all!

A sometimes more productive and rewarding option to stay involved in your child’s school is to volunteer an hour or two a week in their class room, go on field trips when you can. Sign up when the PAC posts a volunteer sheet for the schools big event or ask your child(s) teacher what you can do to help with the time you are willing to contribute.

PTA JUST SAY NO!

hmama3 Reply:

Amy, you are right on!!!! I feel a twinge of guilt every once in awhile (especially at the start of each school year when see the new PTA roster and my name is not on it!), but I quickly remember that I am much happier simply volunteering for a few hours being a reading helper or helping the teacher in the classroom for a few hours a month. So much more rewarding and can be done when it’s convenient for ME!!! Thank you for inspiring me to keep on doing what I know is right!!!

03.26.10#12

Comment by Karin.

PTA board member here – I try to be realistic about what I can contribute and I find myself saying no to things. Our PTA prez is type-A enough for the rest of us. I have my committees that I chair (membership and movie night) and go to meetings and I keep up with what’s going on with the PTA and what forms need to be submitted but I make sure that I don’t take on more that I can handle comfortably.

Honestly, though, if you think that the PTA board is just a group of catty, power-hungry SAHM’s

03.26.10#13

Comment by Karin.

(grr – I hate my touchpad on my laptop!)

If you think that the PTA board is just a bunch of catty SAHM’s and you don’t have the time or desire to commit, just say no b/c it’s really the kids who lose out.

01.17.12#14

Comment by A PTO Party: Good God, How Fun Does THAT Sound? | The Mouthy Housewives.

[…] it does sound like you have one of the worst kinds of PTOs: the kind that acts like they’re doing things for the kids when they’re really doing […]

Consider Checking Out...