Can you clarify the parameters for getting business sponsors for our elementary school?
We are definitely seeing more and more PTAs seek out corporate sponsors/partners for activities they like to hold within their schools. There are a few guiding principles you should consider when deciding whether or not to partner with a business.
- Is the mission/product of the business consistent with your stated purpose as listed on your 1023 application with the IRS? For example, a cigarette company would probably not be consistent with a PTAs stated purpose.
- Is there anything within your standing rules that would prohibit or limit your ability to partner with businesses?
- Who within your PTA will be responsible for reviewing and signing the partnership agreement? This is typically a role filled by the president, but you, of course, would want to check your standing rules.
- It is very important to read all partnership agreements very carefully to make sure the PTA knows what is being required of them in exchange for the donation and are able to do what is required of them within the parameters of their standing rules, stated purpose, and school district requirements. Remember all financial matters and binding agreements should be signed by two elected officers.
As part of this sponsorship, you can offer to put their logo in your newsletter, Facebook page or website. There are a couple of prohibitions:
- You can’t recommend that your members purchase goods/services from this partner.
- You can’t make a qualitative judgment on their goods/services such as saying, “Bob’s Ice Cream Parlor has the best ice cream in all of Washington State.”