Your end-of-year checklist

In a year full of twists and turns, it's been tricky to plan ahead. Our handy checklist will help you tie up all the loose ends

  • Review activity: With PTAs having to find new ways to fundraise this year, it’s particularly important to take the time to reflect on your endeavours. Weigh up the profits versus the amount of effort involved. What might you do differently next time?
  • Request feedback: If you haven’t already asked volunteers, committee members and supporters to give feedback, now’s the time. Download the knowledge capsule template and seek constructive criticism.
  • Celebrate successes: Create a PTA achievement board to be shared online. Highlight how much you raised and what you bought for the school. Demonstrate the positive emotional impact your activities had on the community.
  • Say thank you: Take time to write thank-you notes to volunteers, supporters and sponsors. Organise a virtual get-together or send out tokens of appreciation to core members (ensuring these don’t come out of PTA funds).
  • Write welcome packs: Prepare a PTA welcome pack to hand out to new starters.
  • Organise paperwork: Make sure all your key paperwork and policies are kept securely in one place. This includes your constitution, accounts, meeting minutes, insurance policy, charity registration details, risk assessments and licences.
  • Check data and details: To comply with GDPR, it’s essential to review the data you hold about committee members, volunteers, local businesses and other supporters. Make sure you know where details are stored, and when to delete them.
  • Assess your accounting: It’s best practice to have two authorised signatories on cheques and Direct Debits, so make sure you know who yours are. Check whether an independent annual audit needs to be carried out (see gov.uk for guidance from the Charity Commission).
  • Tidy your stores: If you can access your stores, make sure any equipment remains in good order. Deal with anything that needs repairing or replacing, and if anything is broken, check to see if it’s still under guarantee. If any electrical equipment needs its annual PAT test, see if you can do this through the school. Check use-by dates on any perishables.
  • Start succession planning: Anticipate which committee members might step down this year and start warming up new people to take over. Ask departing members to write handover notes for their successors. Encourage members to invite guests to PTA meetings. If those with qualifications or certificates are leaving, consider sending others on appropriate online courses, such as first aid or food safety and hygiene.
  • Set new goals: Meet with the head to discuss the school’s needs and work out the best way for the PTA to help. With the ever-changing rules and requirements, it’s vital to know how the PTA can support the school and where the priorities lie. Use this information to set new targets for next year.
  • Put dates in the diary: Publish dates as soon as you are able, and have contingency plans in place. Make a note of any renewal dates and accounting requirements, such as when your PTA insurance or lottery licence expires.
  • Check in with sponsors: Business partnerships are about working together, so contact your sponsors to see how they’re coping in the current climate. Ask if there are any ways you can support one another.

Finally, congratulate yourselves on the money – and the smiles – you’ve managed to raise during what has been a challenging year – you’re amazing!

 

See also