Horace Mann PTO Bylaws

Bylaws of the Horace Mann Elementary Parent Teacher Organization
Horace Mann Elementary School
687 Watertown Street
Newton, MA 02460


(adopted August 2017)



The organization shall be known as the Horace Mann Elementary Parent Teacher Organization (Horace Mann PTO). It shall be an affiliate of the Newton Council of Parent Teacher Organizations.

ARTICLE II / Purpose


Section 1. Our mission is to:

  • Promote the core values of Horace Mann which are Care & Respect, Effort & Hard Work, Critical Thinking, Risk Taking
  • Support the Horace Mann administrators, teachers and staff in providing optimal educational, social emotional, and physical growth of our children
  • Encourage collaboration, cooperation and communication between all staff and parents
  • Encourage and promote parent involvement and volunteerism in the Horace Mann Community
  • Strengthen and bring together the Horace Mann community with year-round opportunities for engagement and connection through PTO meetings, social events and fun/educational events
  • Enhance our children’s educational experience through fundraising to support the Creative Arts & Sciences program, Arts Education, technology purchases and other school programs
  • Advocate for Horace Mann Elementary at the district level when necessary

Section 2. The PTO is a non-profit organization that exists for charitable and educational purposes and that qualifies as an independent organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Notwithstanding any other provision of these articles, the PTO shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on (a) by a corporation exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (b) by a corporation, contributions to which are deductible under section 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code.


ARTICLE III / Policies


The policies of the PTO shall be non-commercial, non-sectarian and non-partisan. Its name shall not be used in connection with any political interest or candidate.


ARTICLE IV / Members


Section 1. Any parent, guardian or recognized guardian (loco parentis) for a student at the school may be a member of the PTO. Members who have contributed towards the annual dues shall be considered Members in Good Standing. All Members in Good Standing shall have voting rights. The principal and any teacher employed at the school may be a member and have voting rights.

Section 2. Dues, if any, will be established by the Executive Board. If dues are charged, a member must have paid his or her dues at least fourteen (14) calendar days before a given meeting to be considered a Member in Good Standing with voting rights. (If unable to pay their dues, the board will support any member who has financial need.)

Section 3. The Executive Board (see below) shall vote on most issues concerning the day-to-day running of the PTO as set forth in the Duties by Role (see below.) The Executive Board will call for general votes of all PTO members when it sees fit to do so. It will then publish guidelines for member voting and casting a vote.


ARTICLE V / Officers


The Executive Board (Board) shall be comprised of two (2) Co-Presidents, two (2) Co-Treasurers, a Secretary, and no less than two (2) and no more than four (4) Vice-Presidents. The principal is a member ex-officio. A faculty member is also welcome, ex-officio.

The Executive Board shall govern, manage and facilitate the PTO. The Executive Board will adhere to the Duties by Role as stated in these Bylaws. (see below). The Executive Board shall set and request membership dues, set and approve the annual budget as presented by the Treasurer(s), and establish and manage all committees and fundraisers.

Section 1. Terms of office for both Co-Presidents and Co-Treasurers are two (2) years. Every effort will be made to have terms of “co” positions overlapping. Terms of office for Secretary and Vice-president are one (1) year. Term limits for both Co-Presidents and Co-Treasurers shall be two (2) consecutive terms. The term shall begin on August 1 and end on July 31.


Section 2. Individual Duties by Role are as follows:


Co-Presidents. The Co-President(s) shall preside at all general PTO meetings and Executive Board meetings and set the agenda, with consultation, for these meetings. The President(s) shall serve as the official representative(s) of the PTO. The President shall serve as an ex-officio member of all PTO committees. The President shall represent Horace Mann Elementary School at Newton PTO Council (PTOC) meetings, school committee meeting and district meetings, or send a representative.

Secretary. The Secretary shall keep all written records of the organization and the Executive Board, and shall attend all meetings of the PTO and the Board and record minutes of the proceedings. The Secretary shall post the minutes from each monthly open meeting online on the PTO website and through email prior to the next PTO meeting and maintain files of the minutes of past meetings. At the beginning of each PTO meeting, the Executive Board will vote to approve the prior meeting’s minutes. The Secretary will also distribute the agenda for each meeting as established by the president(s).

Co-Treasurers. The Treasurer(s) shall receive all monies of the PTO, shall keep an accurate record of receipts and expenditures, and shall make authorized disbursements. The Treasurer(s) shall make available a statement of account at meetings of the PTO and as requested by the Executive Board, and shall prepare with the Executive Board an annual budget for approval and make a full report at the Fall and Spring Annual Meetings. The Treasurer(s) shall prepare and file all fiscal reports of the PTO as may be required by federal and state law. The treasurer(s) shall report annually to the Executive Board when the taxes and fiscal reports have been filed. In advance of filing taxes, the treasurer(s) will meet with the co-presidents to go over the filings.

Vice-Presidents. The Vice-Presidents shall assist the co-presidents as needed, or in case of an inability to serve. Other duties will be assigned by the Board as needed.


Section 3. If there is a vacancy in the office of president, a vice-president will become president and an election will be held at the next meeting to fill the vice-president seat.


Section 4. Officers can be removed from office with or without cause by a two-thirds vote of those present (assuming a quorum) at a regular meeting where previous notice has been given.


ARTICLE VI / Elections

Elections shall be held annually in the spring. The Executive Board shall send out a call for nominations by May 15th of each year. Any Member in Good Standing may nominate another Member in Good Standing for nomination to an Executive Board position. Once the nominations have been gathered, the Executive Board will present the slate of officers and set an election date. Candidates will have the opportunity to campaign. Elections shall be by ballot if there is more than one nominee for an open position. To be considered for the position of treasurer or president, a nominee must have previously served as a committee chair or vice-president.

ARTICLE VII / Committees

The Board shall establish committees, as needed to support the PTO mission, programs and budget. The President(s) shall appoint the chairperson(s). Committees shall have such duties and powers as delegated to them by the Executive Board. The Chairperson shall appoint any number of members of the PTO to assist in implementing the committee activities within the current PTO budget set for the committee. Each committee shall have an Executive Board liaison to report to with updates and handle communications with the Board.




Section 1. The Executive Board shall hold monthly meetings with the Principal. These meeting are open to all members of the PTO, but will not include public comment or votes unless called for by the President(s). These meetings will be advertised on the PTO website and through community email.


The Executive Board will also meet monthly to plan for the open meeting with the principal and for planning and implementation of initiatives. Planning meetings are closed. A quorum must be reached for votes at all meetings. At least ten (10) meetings a year shall be held.

Section 2. Special meetings may be called by the President(s), any two members of the Executive Board, or five (5) general members submitting a written request to the Secretary. The Executive Board shall publish notice of General and Special PTO Meetings to PTO members at least one (1) week prior to the meeting.


Section 3. The Executive Board shall host two (2) informational meetings per school year. In the fall, the Board will present the proposed budget, calendar of events and information on committees and volunteer opportunities. In the spring, the Board will present accomplishments and updates, a budget update and discuss elections for the next academic year.


ARTICLE IX / Finances


Section 1. The fiscal year of the PTO shall be from August 1 to July 31 of the following


Section 2. The annual budget, prepared by the Treasurer(s), shall be presented for approval at a PTO meeting prior to the beginning of each fiscal year. Any expenditure in excess of $250.00 not contained in the budget must be approved by the Executive Board prior to its disbursement. A copy of the annual budget shall be posted on the PTO website.

Section 3. All funds shall be kept in one or more accounts under the name of the PTO at a financial institution. The Treasurer(s) and the President(s) shall have full authorized access to any and all accounts, including online accounts, at all times, except in the event of misconduct. Statements of the accounts shall be sent electronically to the President(s) and Treasurer(s), and may be reviewed by the Secretary or another officer or member of the PTO other than the Treasurer and the President, as designated by the Executive Board. The Executive Board shall seek to reserve at least six (6) months of operating costs at all times.

Section 4. All financial activity shall be recorded in a manual or computer accounting system. The Treasurer(s) shall reconcile the account(s) and report all financial activity to the Executive Board monthly.

Section 5. The Treasurer(s) and the President(s) are the authorized signatories for all expenditures.

Section 6. The co-treasurers shall report to the Executive Board each year when taxes are filed.



Section 7. No part of the net earnings of the PTO shall benefit or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the PTO shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in these Bylaws if the Executive Board decides that no conflict of interest exists.


ARTICLE X / Rules of Order

The rules contained in “Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised,” or any subsequent edition of

“Robert’s Rules,” shall govern the PTO in all cases not covered by these Bylaws.


ARTICLE XI / Amendments

These bylaws may be amended at any regular or special meeting providing that previous notice was given (14 calendar days) with two-thirds vote of those present assuming a quorum.


ARTICLE XII / Dissolution

The organization may be dissolved with previous notice (14 calendar days) and a two-thirds vote of those present (assuming a quorum has been met.)


Upon dissolution of the PTO, assets shall be distributed for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 or the corresponding provisions of any future Federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the Federal, state, or local government for a public purpose. Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by a court of competent jurisdiction of the county in which the principal office of the organization is then located, exclusively for such purpose.