Bylaws of the P.S. 31
Brooklyn Parent-Teacher Association, Inc.*
*Approved by the membership on May 27, 2004, and amended by the membership on
March 9, 2007; May 23, 2008; September 24, 2010; September 23, 2011; May 19, 2017; June 20, 2017; December 14, 2018; and February 7, 2020.
The P.S. 31 Brooklyn Parent-Teacher Association, Inc., believes it is their obligation to maintain closer cooperation among parents, teachers, pupils, community organizations indispensable to the better education, health and moral welfare of the children attending the school, do hereby dedicate themselves to lend unselfishly all possible and to fulfill such needs and obligations.
Article I. Name
The name of the association shall be: P.S. 31 Brooklyn Parent-Teacher Association, Inc. (the “Association” or “PTA”).
Article II. Objectives
The P.S. 31 Brooklyn Parent-Teacher Association, Inc. is organized and shall be operated exclusively for charitable, educational, scientific, and literary purposes within the meaning of section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended; to strengthen and support P.S. 31 Samuel F. Dupont School; to promote the welfare and education of children at P.S. 31 Samuel F. Dupont School in the home, school, and community by fostering parental involvement in the school; and to conduct any other lawful activity or pursue any other purposes consistent with the foregoing.
Article III. Membership
Section 1. Eligibility
Membership in the Association shall be limited to parents. Hereinafter the term ‘parents’ refers to ‘parents, foster parents, legally-appointed guardians, and persons in parental relation to students currently attending P.S. 31.’ No membership form is necessary. In the beginning of each school year, a welcome letter from the Association shall inform parents of their automatic membership status and voting rights.
If a Parent-Teacher Association, membership shall be open to all teachers currently employed at P.S. 31.
Section 2. Donations
In order to fully fund enrichment programs, the PTA needs to raise approximately $200 per student. Member donations are voluntary and can be given in any amount. Donations are in no way a requirement for PTA membership, voting, or running for office.
Section 3. Voting Privileges/Restrictions:
Each parent of a child/children currently enrolled at P.S. 31 shall be entitled to one vote. Proxy voting or absentee balloting is prohibited.
Each teacher currently employed at P.S. 31 shall be entitled to one vote.
Article IV. Officers and elections
The offices for election of the PTA shall be: Co-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, and Board Member. There shall be a maximum of five positions filled. The Association must elect the mandatory core officers (Co-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, and Board Member) in order to be a functioning PTA. The term of office for Co-Presidents shall be for one year as outlined below.
Section 2. Term of Office and Term Limits
The term of office shall be from July 1st through June 30th. Officers shall be elected by the second Friday in June for a one-year term beginning July 1. Qualifications for officers are limited to parents. Term limits for each officer position for the Association shall be two consecutive one-year terms. The candidate may be elected to serve in a third term provided no other interested candidate is nominated and willing to serve.
Section 3. Duties of Officers
3.1 President or Co-Presidents: Co-presidents shall preside at all meetings of the Association and shall be ex-officio members of all committees except the nominating committee. The co-presidents shall provide leadership for its members. The co- presidents shall appoint chairpersons of PTA committees with the approval of the Executive Board. The co-presidents shall delegate responsibilities to other PTA members and shall encourage meaningful participation in all parent and school activities. The co-presidents shall attend all regular meetings of the region/district presidents’ council and shall be core members of the school leadership team. The executive board members in consultation with the Association will determine which co-president will serve as the school’s representative to the region/district presidents’ council. The co-presidents shall meet regularly with the Executive Board members in accordance with these bylaws to plan the agendas for the general membership meetings. The co-presidents shall both be the signatories on checks. The co-presidents or his/her designee shall represent the PTA on region/district committees. The co-presidents shall assist with the June transfer of PTA records to the incoming Executive Board.
3.3 Secretary: The secretary shall maintain the official record (minutes) of the proceedings and actions of all Association meetings. The responsibilities shall include the preparation of notices, agendas, sign-in sheets and materials distributed. The secretary shall prepare the minutes of each Association meeting and shall make copies of the minutes available upon request. He/she shall maintain custody of the Association’s records on school premises. The secretary shall sign and incorporate all amendments into the bylaws and shall ensure that signed copies of the PTA bylaws with the latest amendments are on file in the principal’s office. The secretary shall be responsible for reviewing, maintaining and responding to all correspondence addressed to the Association. The secretary shall assist with the June transfer of all PTA records to the incoming Executive Board.
3.4 Treasurer: The treasurer shall be responsible for all financial affairs and funds of the Association. The treasurer shall also be responsible for maintaining an updated record of all income and expenditures on school premises and shall be one of the signatories on checks. The treasurer shall adhere to and implement all financial procedures established by the Association. The treasurer shall be prepared to present and provide copies of financial reports at all Association meetings. The treasurer shall also prepare and provide the January 31st interim and June annual financial accounting reports. He/she shall make available all books or financial records for viewing by members upon request and for audit. The treasurer shall prepare all financial records and assist with the June transfer of all PTA records to the incoming Executive Board.
3.5 School Leadership Team Membership: The co-presidents of the PTA shall automatically serve as core members of the School Leadership Team. All other parent member representatives shall be elected by the general membership.
Section 4. Election of Officers
The Association will adhere to the timeline in accordance with the current Chancellor’s Regulation A-660 (between the fourth Monday in May and the second Friday in June) for completion of PTA elections during Community and Citywide election periods beginning in the school year 2004-2005 and every two-year voting period thereafter (i.e., 2006-2007; 2008-2009). During non-voting periods for Community and Citywide elections, the PTA will adhere to the timeline as outlined in the PTA’s bylaws.
The yearly election of officers of the Association must be held by the second Friday in June. Any timeline established by the FTA to complete the nominations and election process must adhere to this timeframe. The principal must be notified in writing of the date and time of the election by May 1st.
4.1 Nominating Committee: A nominating committee may be established during the February general membership meeting. If a nominating committee can be established, the committee shall consist of three to five (3-5) members. The majority of the members of the committee must come from the general membership. The remaining members of the nominating committee shall be selected by the co-President, subject to the approval of the Executive Board. The nominating committee shall choose one of its members to serve as chairperson. No person employed at P.S. 31 shall be eligible to serve on the nominating committee.
Members of the nominating committee are not eligible to run for office. An eligible member of the nominating committee may be considered as a candidate if she/he immediately resigns from the nominating committee in writing.
The nominating committee shall seek out the membership in writing, in English and other languages as appropriate, for recommendations of candidates for all offices. The nominating committee will also be responsible for conducting the election process. This includes the following:
- Canvassing the membership throughout the months of February – April for all eligible candidates;
- Preparing and distributing all notices at least ten calendar days in advance of any meeting(s) pertaining to the nominations and election process in English and other languages spoken by parents in the school;
- Preparing ballots, attendance sheets, ballot box, tally sheets and all other materials pertaining to the election immediately following the April meeting;
- Determining and verifying the eligibility of all interested candidates, prior to the election;
- Reporting the names of previously nominated candidates during the April meeting;
- Ensuring that an opportunity is provided to all members allowing for nominations (this includes self-nomination) to be taken from the floor and then officially closed during the April meeting;
- Sending a reminder meeting notice which includes the names of all eligible candidates and the officer positions they are seeking to the membership at least two (2) weeks prior to the spring election meeting;
- Notifying the principal of the date off the election in writing by May 1st;
- Scheduling the election at a time that ensures maximum participation;
- Ensuring that only eligible members receive a ballot for voting;
- Completing the spring election during the period of time between the day that falls ten days after the second Wednesday of May and the second Friday in June of each school year;
- Ensuring that the election is certified by the principal or his/her designee immediately following the election (Refer to Article IV, Section 6);
- Maintaining on file (on school premises) the ballots from any contested election for a period of six months or until a determination of any grievance filed, whichever is longer.
If a nominating committee is not/cannot be formed by the end of February, the executive board must communicate that the nominations and election process outlined above will proceed under the direction off at least two members off the Association who are not running for office. These members will be selected to serve in this role by vote of the general membership at the March general membership meeting. They will perform the responsibilities and adhere to the timeframe outlined in this section of the bylaws. They may also seek assistance in conducting nominations and the election from the appropriate region/district presidents’ council and/or the principal or his/her designee and/or the district or regional superintendent or his/her designee.
If at least two members off the Association who are not running for office are not/cannot be identified to conduct the nominations and election process, an expedited nominations and election process as outlined in Chancellor’s Regulation A-660 will be conducted by the appropriate region/district presidents’ council and/or the district or regional superintendent or his/her representative by no later than the second Friday in June.
4.2 Notices: The meeting notice and agenda for the spring general membership election meeting shall be distributed not less than ten (10) calendar days prior to the date. All meeting notices and agendas shall be available in English and translated, whenever possible. The distribution date shall appear on all notices. It shall list all candidates in alphabetical order by surname under the office for which they were nominated.
4.3 Voting Requirements: There shall be one vote per member for the child/children currently attending P.S. 31. Each teacher currently employed at P.S. 31 shall be entitled to one vote. Voting by proxy or absentee ballot is prohibited.
4.4 Contested Elections and Use of Ballot:
- Written ballot shall be used in all contested elections.
- Names of candidates shall appear on the ballot in alphabetical order by surname under the title of the office(s) for which they were nominated. Names of candidates for the positions of co-presidents must be listed as a team.
- Ballots shall be printed with voting instructions in English and other languages spoken by parents in the school.
- Ballots shall be distributed once voter eligibility has been established.
- Ballots shall be counted immediately following the election and in the presence of the members.
- Ballots shall be retained for six months by the chairperson of the nominating committee or if there is no nominating committee, by an officer. If he/she will no longer be an eligible member after June 30, the ballots shall be turned over to the incoming Secretary.
4.5 Uncontested Elections: In uncontested elections, members may vote by show of hands or by acclamation to accept the slate of incoming officers.
Section 5. June Transfer of Records
The outgoing PTA Executive Board shall arrange for the orderly transfer of records and information of the PTA, which shall include an overview of all PTA transactions for the school year, to the incoming Executive Board. At least two meetings will be scheduled during the month of June for this purpose. Any member of the Executive Board may request the assistance of the district or region presidents’ council during this process.
Section 6. Certification of the Election
The results of the election shall be announced by the chairperson of the nominating committee or by a member selected to conduct the nominations and election process.
All mandatory officer vacancies must be filled by succession of the next highest ranking officer. For example, a vacancy in the position of President will be filled by the Vice-President or next highest ranking officer. In the event that the core mandatory offices (Co-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, and Board Member) cannot be filled through succession, a special expedited election must be held to fill those vacancies. Officers who wish to resign their positions once an election has been certified, must do so in writing to the secretary, and, at that time, shall turn over all records to the secretary. In the event of the resignation of the secretary, he/she must transfer records to the president or co-presidents.
Section 8. Special Expedited Election Process
Special Expedited elections shall be held to fill vacancies in the mandatory officer positions (Co-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer, and Board Member) in the event they cannot be filled through succession. The Executive Board shall be responsible for announcing vacancies in any or all of the core mandatory officer positions. Notice of any vacancies must be communicated to the general membership at least forty-eight hours prior to holding special election process to fill the vacancy. Officer vacancies can be filled at a special meeting provided there has been at least a five calendar day written notice to the membership.
Section 9. Disciplinary Action
Any officer who fails to attend three (3) consecutive Executive Board meetings shall be removed from office by recommendation of the Executive Board or motion from a member and two-thirds vote of the membership present. The officer shall be given the opportunity to submit in writing an explanation showing good cause which explains his/her reason for not attending these meetings for the Board’s consideration.
In other instances where an elected officer(s) of the Association has been accused of being derelict and/or neglectful in his/her duties, an officer(s) may be removed only after:
- A motion is presented by any PTA member during any meeting of the PTA assembly to appoint a review committee. The motion must be approved by majority vote of the general membership present.
- The majority of the review committee must be comprised from the general membership. Executive Board members against whom charges are being contemplated may not serve on the review committee.
- The review committee must investigate, examine and obtain all relevant documents, interview all pertinent witnesses, etc., in order to conduct their fact-finding review. All pertinent facts and information must be considered by the committee. The officer(s) against whom charges are being contemplated has the right to present relevant facts, documents and/or witnesses.
- The committee must present its findings and recommendations during a general membership meeting within a period not to exceed sixty (60) calendar days from the date of the establishment of the review committee. The Association’s notice and agenda must cite that a vote will be taken by the membership regarding disciplinary action. The general membership shall then vote to remove or absolve the officer(s).
Article V. Executive board
Section 1. Composition
The Executive Board shall be composed of the elected officers of the Association (and chairpersons of standing committees). Persons employed at P.S. 31 or community school board members and or community and citywide education councils in the district or region shall be ineligible to serve as an elected officer of the Association. Officers shall be expected to attend all Executive Board meetings and shall be subject to removal under Article IV, Section 9 unless a good and valid reason is rendered in writing.
Section 2. Meetings
Regularly scheduled meetings of the Executive Board shall be held monthly, September through June, on a date and time convenient to the Board members.
Section 3. Voting
Each member of the Executive Board shall be entitled to one vote.
Section 4. Quorum
Two (2) members of the Executive Board shall constitute a quorum, allowing for official business to be transacted.
Article VI. Meetings
Section 1. General Membership Meetings
- There shall be no less than six general membership meetings of the Association held during the school year, September through June. A ten calendar day written notice of meetings shall be required prior to the scheduled meeting. The date of distribution shall appear on all notices.
- All eligible members may attend and participate during general membership meetings and may speak to agenda items subject to restriction in these bylaws.
- Observers may speak and otherwise participate, if acknowledged by the chair.
Section 2. Order of Business
The order of business at meetings of the Association, unless changed by the Executive Board shall be:
- Call to Order
- Approval of Minutes
- President’s Report
- Treasurer’s Report
- Principal’s Report
- School Leadership Team Report
- Committee Reports
- Old Business
- New Business
Section 3. Quorum
A quorum of ten members of the Association shall be required in order to conduct official Association business.
Section 4. Minutes
Minutes of the previous general or special membership meeting shall be available in written form and read for approval at the next general membership meeting. The minutes must be made available upon request to any member.
Section 5. Special Membership Meetings
- A special membership meeting shall be called to deal with a matter(s) of importance that cannot be postponed until the next general membership meeting. The president may call a special membership meeting with a minimum of forty-eight (48) hours written notice to parents stating precisely what the topic of the meeting will be.
- In addition, upon receipt of a written request from five (5) Association members, the president must call a special membership meeting within five working days of the request and with forty-eight (48) hours written notice to parents.
Section 6. Parliamentary Authority
All procedural questions not covered by these bylaws shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, provided they are not inconsistent with law, policy, regulation and these bylaws.
Article VII. Committees
Section 1. Standing Committees
1.1 The Co-presidents will appoint standing committee chairpersons with the approval of the Executive Board. Ad-hoc committees shall be established by Executive Board approval. Only chairpersons of the standing committees will be allowed to vote on Executive Board issues. The standing committees of the Association are the following:
Membership: The membership committee shall be responsible for encouraging parent participation, outreach and recruitment. The Chairperson for the Membership committee shall make every effort to coordinate their outreach efforts and strategies with the school’s Parent Coordinator. The membership committee shall also prepare a newsletter to all members which contains, at a minimum, messages from the principal, PTA co-president, list of Executive Board members, all PTA meeting dates, student and parent events, school policies, PTA budget and any other material deemed appropriate by the Association. The committee shall also be responsible for maintaining a current list of members which shall be available without home addresses and telephone numbers at every membership meeting.
Budget: The budget committee shall be responsible for drafting 1) a proposed budget each spring for approval by the membership, 2) a written review of the prior year’s budget, both of which must be presented for vote at the May membership meeting, and 3) presenting the budget process. (See Article VIII, Section 3.)
Audit: The audit committee shall conduct an internal audit or shall recommend that an external audit of all financial affairs of the organization be conducted based upon their initial findings. The treasurer shall make all books and records available to them. The audit committee shall prepare a written report or provide copies of the external report to be presented to the membership at a general membership meeting or upon completion of their review and investigation.
Article VIII. Financial affairs
Section 1. Fiscal Year
The fiscal year of the Association shall run from July 1 through June 30.
Section 2. Signatories
The president, secretary and treasurer shall be authorized to sign checks. All checks require at least two signatures. Signatories shall not be related by blood or marriage. Writing checks to petty cash or cash is prohibited. The use of withdrawal slips is prohibited.
Section 3. Budget
The budget committee shall consist of five (5) persons and be chaired by the treasurer. The committee shall be responsible for:
- Presenting the budget process for membership approval which must be voted on by no later than the October membership meeting;
- A written review of the prior year’s budget for discussion at the May membership meeting;
- Preparing a proposed budget for adoption by the membership at the May membership meeting; and
- The development and/or review of the budget process which includes:
- The outgoing Executive Board must review the current budget, annual financial status, accounting, expenditures and outstanding bills and prepare a proposed budget for the next school year. The proposed budget must be presented to and approved by the membership no later than the May meeting.
- The incoming Executive Board must review the proposed budget in September for presentation and discussion during the September meeting. Budget amendments may be proposed at this time.
- The counting and handling of any cash, checks, or money orders received requires at least two non-related PTA members to participate. Received monies shall be counted within the same day, recorded and be signed by the authorized PTA members. All monies must be counted in school.
- No parent and/or staff member shall collect fundraising proceeds from any student without the written approval from the principal.
- All funds shall be deposited in the bank account by authorized board members within 24 hours of receipt. No funds shall be kept in a member’s home but shall be secured and locked in the school. PTA funds will be taken to the bank for deposit by at least two authorized members.
- Documentation related to every transaction must be maintained at the school, e., cancelled checks, deposit receipts, purchase orders, PTA minutes related to the expenditure, etc.
3.2 The budget may be amended by vote of the general membership at any membership meeting.
3.3 All expenditures not included in the budget at the time of its adoption must be approved by resolution of the membership.
3.4 The Executive Board is authorized to make an emergency expenditure not to exceed $400 with a two-thirds approval by the Executive Board. These expenditures shall be reported to the general membership at the next Association meeting in writing by the treasurer. The minutes of the meeting must reflect a vote taken by the Association to accept this action.
Section 4. Audit
4.1 The Co-presidents shall request volunteers to form an audit committee of three to five (3-5) persons. Executive Board members, if they are not check signatories, may serve. The majority of the committee shall be comprised from the general membership.
4.2 The audit committee shall conduct an audit of all financial affairs of the Association with the help of the treasurer who shall make all books and records available to them. The audit committee may also recommend that an external audit of the Association’s financial records be conducted.
4.3 Additional duties of the audit committee may include the examination of all relevant financial statements and records of disbursements, verification of all Association equipment and ensuring compliance with bylaw provisions for the expenditure of funds.
4.4 The audit committee shall prepare a written report or provide copies of the external report to be presented to the membership at a general membership meeting or upon completion of their review and investigation. This report shall be included for review and discussion during the June transfer of records.
Section 5. Financial Accounting
5.1 The treasurer shall prepare and provide copies of the Interim Financial Accounting Report by January 31st and the Annual Financial Accounting Report by the June meeting including all income and expenditures, to be presented and reviewed by general membership. Copies of these reports shall be provided to the principal. The Treasurer must file a financial disclosure form annually with the IRS in line with requirements of similar 501(c)(3) organizations. This form will need to be post-marked by November 15th for the tax year beginning July 1st and ending June 30th.
5.2 The treasurer shall be responsible for all monies of the Association and shall keep accurate records in a form consistent with these bylaws and applicable Regulations of the Chancellor. The treasurer, secretary, at least one other PTA officer, and additional persons as needed shall be designated and approved by the PTA Executive Board to collect, count, tally and record all orders and payments. In accordance with Chancellor’s Regulation A-610, parents must obtain written approval from the principal before collecting fundraising proceeds from students. The treasurer and at least one other PTA officer shall transport all funds to the bank, and deposit slips shall identify the source of all monies deposited. All parties involved in these financial transactions shall initial the deposit slips. The treasurer shall make all authorized disbursements and shall, within the next banking day, deposit all monies of the Association in a responsible banking institution selected by the Association. All records of the Association, including checkbooks, ledgers, cancelled checks, invoices, receipts, etc., shall be maintained and secured on school premises.
All collected monies for next day bank deposit must be secured on school premises.
Article IX. Amendments
These bylaws may be amended at any regular meeting of the Association by a two-thirds vote of the members present, provided the amendment has been presented in writing to the membership at the previous meeting, and appears in the notice of the meeting at which it is to be amended. Amendments are effective immediately unless otherwise specified. A thorough review of these bylaws shall be conducted every three (3) years. These bylaws shall not contain language which does not conform with Chancellor’s Regulation A-660 and Department of Education guidelines.
Article X. Dissolution
Upon the dissolution of this organization, assets shall be distributed for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or to a state or local government, for a public purpose.
These bylaws as set forth above have been voted on and approved by the membership. The most recent amendments were approved at the membership meeting held on December 14th, 2018.
P.S. 31 Brooklyn Parent-Teacher Association, Inc.
Conflicts of Interest Policy
The purpose of this Conflicts of Interest Policy (the “Policy”) is to protect the P.S. 31 Brooklyn Parent-Teacher Association, Inc. (“PS 31 PTA”) when it is contemplating entering into a transaction or arrangement that might benefit the private interest of a member of the PS 31 PTA. This Policy is intended to supplement but not replace any applicable state and federal laws governing conflict of interest applicable to nonprofit and charitable organizations.
- No officer, faculty, professional staff, or member of the Public School 31 Parent Teacher Association (PS 31 PTA), or any of its committees, shall derive any personal profit or gain, directly or indirectly, by reason of his or her participation with the PS 31 PTA.
- Each individual shall disclose to the PS 31 PTA any personal interest which he or she may have in any matter pending before the PS 31 PTA and shall refrain from participation in any discussion or decision on such matter.
- The President of the meeting is expected to make inquiry if such conflict appears to exist and the member has not made it known.
- In the event of a potential conflict of interest:
- An interested person may make a presentation at a meeting of the PS 31 PTA, but after the presentation, he or she must leave the meeting during the discussion and vote on the proposed transaction or arrangement involving the conflict of interest.
- If a more advantageous transaction or arrangement is not reasonably possible under circumstances not producing a conflict of interest, the officers shall determine by a majority vote of the disinterested members whether the transaction or arrangement is in PS 31 PTA’s best interest, for its own benefit, and whether it is fair and reasonable. In conformity with the above determination it shall make its decision as to whether to enter into the transaction or arrangement.
- Annual Statement
Each officer of the PS 31 PTA and PS 31 faculty or professional staff members shall annually sign a statement which affirms such person:
- Has received a copy of the Conflicts of Interest Policy;
- Has read, understands and agrees to comply with the Policy;
- Understands PS 31 PTA is a charitable organization and in order to maintain its federal tax exemption it must engage primarily in activities which accomplish one or more of its tax-exempt purposes; and
- Has disclosed any other board or committee memberships and employment; and
- Has disclosed any conflicts of interest with PS 31 PTA within the last year.
This Policy may be amended from time to time in accordance with the bylaws of the PS 31 PTA.
PS 31 PTA Conflicts of Interest Annual Certification
I, __________________________________, am (circle one) a PS 31 PTA officer / PS 31 faculty or professional staff, and certify that I:
- Have received a copy of the PS 31 PTA Conflicts of Interest Policy (the Policy);
- Have read, understand and agree to comply with the Policy; and
- Understand that PS 31 PTA is a charitable organization and in order to maintain its federal tax exemption it must engage primarily in activities which accomplish one or more of its tax-exempt purposes.
At this time, I am a Board member, a committee member, or an employee of the following organizations:
I certify, except as described below, that I am not now nor at any time during the past year have been:
- A participant, directly or indirectly, in any arrangement, agreement, investment, or other activity with any vendor, supplier, or other party doing business with the PS 31 PTA which has resulted or could result in personal benefit to me;
- A recipient, directly or indirectly, of any salary payments or loans or gifts of any kind or any free service or discounts or other fees from or on behalf of any person or organization engaged in any transaction with the PS 31 PTA.
Any exceptions to 1 or 2 above are stated below with a full description of the transactions and of the interest, whether direct or indirect, which I have (or have had during the past year) in the persons or organizations having transactions with the PS 31 PTA.
Printed Name Signature